Trampolines and rebounders are closely related in many ways. However, each has its own uniqueness, which you may prefer to the other. Neither is better though; just different.
We can’t truly distinguish between a rebounder and trampoline without defining what a rebounder is.
A rebounder is a trampoline that is smaller in size. It’s often used for fitness and/or weight loss. A trampoline, on the other hand, is primarily used for recreation. Because of their smaller size, most rebounders are used indoors and are easier to install, break down, transport and store.
Also known as a fitness or mini-trampoline, rebounders have a smaller bounce than most trampolines. Outdoor trampolines are typically between 7-1/2 and 16 feet (or larger for commercial trampolines), while rebounders are typically about 3-1/2 feet.
Comparing Shape and Color
Like trampolines, rebounders come in various shapes – from circular to rectangular and even trapezoid. You’ll also find them in multiple colors, to suit just about any style or taste.
Quite surprisingly, some rebounders can support up to 400 pounds, depending on the brand and/or model. Standard trampolines, on the other hand, generally support between 100 pounds (for smaller models) and 330 pounds (for larger models). In some cases, however, some trampolines (such as Magic Cage/Circle) and rebounders (such as The Bellicon) can support even more weight.
Both types of equipment are recommended for one jumper at a time.
Rebounders and trampolines both improve your overall muscle coordination. They are especially beneficial if you suffer from back or joint pain.
Fitness trampolines are a great option if you want to walk, jog or bounce during workout. Unlike standard trampolines, some come packaged with a basic workout video, consisting of various exercise routines.
Outdoor trampolines, on the other hand, encourage play. These larger pieces often have extra accessories that you can purchase (for an additional cost). These may include basketball sets, tent attachments and bounce boards. Unlike most rebounders, some trampolines also come with a safety net, making them a wonderful option for families with young children.
The price of a rebounder varies by brand and model, starting as low as $30-$200 and going as high as the $700 range. Outdoor trampolines, on the other hand, often range in the $100-$400 range, while others fall in the $1,000 range.
Types of Trampolines
Trampolines have come a long way from when the first modern equipment was made, back in the 1930s. Today, these fun pieces come in different styles, colors and shapes, but the overall concept is the same. There are primarily two types of trampolines – recreational and competitive.
Recreational trampolines are usually purchased by individuals for use within the home. Shapes vary from oval and circular to square, rectangular, hexagonal and octagonal.
Competitive trampolines, on the other hand, are often rectangular, and are purchased for sports. They are made from a strong fabric and held together by several strong coils, to withstand heavier weight during competitive jumps.
Types of Rebounders
Unfortunately, not all rebounders are created equally. These fitness units can be divided into two categories: quality and non-quality/cheap.
Cheap, in this case, is not defined by a rebounder’s softness, firmness or price, but by the quality of the material that’s used to make it. Cheap rebounders are often manufactured with low-quality bungee cords or weak steel springs. They often sink down under you as you bounce and leave your back and knees feeling worse than before.
Quality rebounders, on the other hand, are often made from high-quality cords or steel springs. These can be adjustable cords like those made by Bellicon or JumpSport’s 370 model, or they can be steel springs like those from ReboundAIR, Needak and Cellerciser. Some of these springs are made to last two or more years or even the lifetime of the equipment.
Which Option is Best for You?
Choosing between a trampoline or rebounder depends on who will be using the equipment, how it will be used, and where it will be used.
Decide How or Why It Will be Used
I would suggest a traditional or outdoor trampoline if you plan to jump for fun or recreational reasons. On the other hand, if you plan to walk, jump or bounce for fitness, a rebounder may be better.
While it is never a good idea to do flips on your equipment, it’s more likely to happen with children despite your warning. If this is the case in your family, I would strongly recommend a trampoline (preferably one with a safety net) rather than a rebounder.
Decide Who Will Use It
Rebounders are great for any age, even the elderly, and can provide a lung-strengthening workout even if you have knee or back problems.
I would recommend a trampoline for families with children. In fact, if you have younger children, a round trampoline may be best. Round trampolines tend to have a softer and more even bounce than their rectangular counterpart. This makes them a wonderful option if you plan to share your equipment with friends, who are new to bouncing.
A larger trampoline is also a great option if you need an equipment your kids can grow into.
Decide Where It Will be Used
Space is an important decision as you make your choice between each option. If you have limited space, a rebounder may be the way to go. It works well if you live in an apartment, don’t have a yard, or simply don’t want to be bothered with putting up your equipment whenever it rains, snows, etc.
For those living in an apartment, worried about disturbing neighbors, opt for a rebounder with a soft bounce, such as those made by Needak or Bellicon.
On the other hand, a standard trampoline works well if space isn’t an issue and you want an equipment the whole family can enjoy.
Finally, whether you choose a trampoline or rebounder, it’s important to select a quality equipment that supports your weight and that of other jumpers.