Trampoline workouts put a bounce in your step — and a wobble in your legs.
SINCE I FIRST went jumping at SkyMania a few years ago, trampolining has become a semiregular part of my fitness routine. It’s super fun, it’s a great activity with kids on a rainy afternoon and it’s amazing for fitness. After 15 minutes of vigorous jumping, my legs always beg for a break.
When I learned SkyMania in Kirkland had a CrossFit trampoline class called SkyFit, I had to go.
SkyFit adds weights and other training to push you in an already challenging activity, although you can make it as low- or as high-impact as you want. SkyMania is set up with multiple small trampolines separated by bumpers, and on a weekday morning, it is delightfully spacious.
Teacher Jennie Jaeger had us jump rope to start, which in some ways was easier on a trampoline, because we had so much bounce, but timing was harder than on solid ground.
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After the warm-up, we picked up 2-pound balls. We threw them at the bouncy walls with each hand, and did overhead throws and push throws from the chest. After 20 to 30 reps for each set, we jumped across four trampolines, turned around and jumped back.
In addition to jumping mat to mat, I practiced jumping against the slanted walls. Despite previous attempts, I had not mastered this without falling. Jaeger showed me how to twist in the air first, so your feet hit the wall with your toes pointed down. That way, you are facing the right direction and can keep momentum.
I still felt tentative, and fell the first couple of times — if you’re new to jumping, you’ll fall a lot, FYI. By the third round, I put in all my effort, and succeeded in twisting and landing on my feet, and also bouncing across to the other side. Yes!
We also worked on jumping, and tossing and catching a light ball at the same time for coordination. I tried to throw it from behind my back and catch it in front, which required accuracy I do not have. We also did passes under one leg at a time.
To give us a break from the cardio, Jaeger added band work: We put bands around our shins and inched sideways across the bumpers to work our hips.
My favorite part was the tricks. She taught us a knee drop, followed by a tuck of the knees up to our chests and a butt kick.
I learned the name for another trick, the seat drop, where you bounce on your butt with legs straight ahead. Jaeger had me use my hands farther behind me for support while doing it, which helped.
After practicing the seat drop, she ramped it up with a twist. She bounced a few times to get good height, dropped down for one, bounced high enough she was vertical, twisted 180 degrees and did a second seat drop. My jaw dropped.
She broke it down and had us practice jumping and twisting 360 degrees while spotting with our eyes. I can spin when I’m fresh, but I was losing steam, so we skipped the full-twist seat drop. After final core work and stretching, Jaeger told me to come back to work on it.
We were not timed during our intervals, which usually pushes me to go harder, but I didn’t need it. Trampolining on its own is a vigorous, intense workout, challenging core and leg strength. I liked the class both for the workout and for learning new jumping skills. If you’re excited to jump and want to learn more, it could be the right one for you.