Best Trampoline Guide

Taking off on a Trampoline!As we head into the Thanksgiving and Christmas season, many of us would not be jumping out in the cold! Here’s where rebounding comes in. Check out our mini-trampoline recommendations or any of the rebounder reviews to help you decide on a rebounder to keep fit or keep the kids busy with some healthy indoor exercise this season!

Do you have kids who would love a trampoline? Or maybe you are an adult who is looking for a rebounder to include as part of your fitness routine? Trampolines are a great tool for fun and fitness but it is important to get one that is safe and will last through years of rough use. Deciding on the best trampoline to buy can be a challenge. The Best Trampoline Guide is a shortlist of the best trampolines for each category together with trampoline reviews, safety guidelines and information on how to choose a trampoline, compiled in my search for the best trampolines available

I have a daughter who first played on a trampoline some years ago. I remember the look on her face; the bright spark of excitement at the first sight of the the bright blue trampoline that sat on the lawn. As a toddler she had always loved playing in bouncy castles, but this was a whole new level!

Expect to pay about $250 and above for a 12-foot round trampoline. Anything below that would have suspect quality and should be avoided (of course size also matters and a smaller 8′ model from the same brand will cost less). You can get a good value trampoline in the $200-$500 range. These are round shaped trampolines for family fun. The really premium models will cost from $700 to $2000 depending on size. These are generally rectangular in shape and meant for gymnastics.

Best Trampoline Shortlist

Here are my top trampoline recommendations:

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Don’t forget to add a ladder and anchor kit for outdoor trampolines!

Get a trampoline as a gift for a kid or a piece of fun fitness equipment for yourself! Have active children with energy to burn? A trampoline will provide hours of healthy fun instead of having them just sit in front of the TV or glued to an iPad. Too many children these days lack physical exercise and we see that in the increasing obesity and general lack of fitness as a whole generation is raised on touchscreens. It can be a challenge to get kids off their video games. The key is FUN! And a trampoline is great fun! It develops fitness and coordination. The end results are a healthier and more confident person.

Choosing a Trampoline

So which trampoline should you buy? It depends on who and what the trampoline is for. There are many options available and they vary widely in size, price and quality.

For an out door trampoline, I strongly recommend the Skywalker for it’s balance of quality and price. It comes in 12 or 15 foot round sizes and also a choice of blue, green or red. Ultega also makes a comparable 12 or 14 foot trampoline, but they seem to have quality control issues recently with some packages delivered with missing parts. If you are willing to pay, Jump Sport is pricey but comes with a longer warranty and their patented Staged Bounce technology which is supposed to help reduce injuries. You also need to add $260 for the enclosure which is sold separately.

For rebounders I would definitely go with Needak as a first choice – particularly the folding model in blue which I think is a pretty cool color! It’s made 100% in the USA with top quality materials. Go with Jumpsport if you want to spend about $100 less.

The important factors to consider are:

Type

Are you looking for a traditional trampoline, a mini trampoline a.k.a. rebounder or a toddler trampoline?

  • Traditional Trampolines: If you have the space, traditional trampolines are great fun for the whole family! They come in several shapes and sizes such as the classic round as well as square and oval. These shapes are usually designed for family fun. Trampolines for gymnastics and competitive training are usually rectangular.
  • Mini Trampolines or Rebounders: Rebounding is a fantastic fitness activity. It is a low impact exercise suitable for all ages – children, adults and seniors. A rebounder takes up very little space and some models can be folded in half. You can rebound while watching TV, at work or on vacation! It’s so much fun you might end up fighting over it or have to buy one for each family member!
  • Toddler Trampolines: These are similar to rebounders but specifically designed for young kids. Unless you want a mini trampoline with bright colors and a low weight limit, I would recommend getting a regular rebounder with a stabilizing bar which can be used by both a toddler and every other member of the family.

Safety

This is the most important factor. You or your loved ones safety is at stake. You will be launch several feet into the air and land on the trampoline. It is imperative that the trampoline has quality construction that will withstand the tremendous stress exerted and safety features to protect you from knocks and cuts. So don’t skimp on price if it compromises quality. Go for either the best quality or great value with good quality.

Price

The prices of both trampolines and rebounders can vary very widely.

  • Trampolines start at around $100 and can cost over $2,000.  Be prepared to budget close to $300 and above for a reasonable quality trampoline with safety net. Price factors include quality as well as size and shape as described below.
  • Rebounders can cost from $38 to $400. A high quality rebounder will cost $200 to just over $300.

Size & Shape

For a traditional trampoline, you will also need to decide on the size which ranges from 8′ to 17′. Shapes include round, square, oval and rectangular as described above. Size and shape also affect price – the larger the trampoline the higher the cost. Round trampolines are also generally cheaper as they require fewer springs and material compared to the other shapes.

Design, Construction & Materials

The build quality of a trampoline depends on its design, construction and material used.

  • Design:  Is the design stable or might it tip over? Are the springs and poles all adequately padded? Is the trampoline easy or near impossible to assemble? (Tip 1: Don’t underestimate ease of assembly!) (Tip 2: Skywalker trampolines come with safety nets pre-attached!)
  • Construction: Are the joints and parts all attached securely? You don’t want the legs breaking or springs flying off. Do the pads attach securely and cover the springs adequately?
  • Materials: Jumping mat, frame, springs and foam pads are all important parts. Is the mat UV and water resistant? Is the frame galvanized steel?

Weight Capacity

Each model has different weight capacities. Make sure the trampoline you pick can handle the heaviest user!

Delivery and Assembly

You can pick up a trampoline at the local Walmart or sports store, but it is much easier to order online and have it delivered! Consider that a 15-Foot Skywalker trampoline comes packaged in 2 boxes with a shipping weight of 113 pounds EACH! You will need a small truck or van to transport that home. I personally use Amazon often since I don’t stay close to a Walmart and it is also a great way to send gifts to my nephews and friends.

For an outdoor trampoline, be prepared to set aside 2 to 3 hours for assembly. If you are handy with D.I.Y., you could probably complete the job in less than that. It is also good to have someone help you with the assembly as a trampoline is large and the extra pair of hands will come in very handy. Just follow the instructions and double check all the joints and springs after assembly.

Finally, you should order a ladder and anchor kit. A ladder is very helpful with climbing on and off the trampoline – in fact I would say it’s essential. An anchor kit is an important safety accessory especially in areas with strong wind and to secure the trampoline firmly.

 

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