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Bouncing Fun With A Trampoline

Jan 3, 2008
The trampoline is becoming more and more popular. This is no doubt due to many factors, one of which is the ease of learning and performing stunts that would be difficult or impossible without the assistance afforded by the apparatus. This very fact, however, causes the apparatus to be potentially dangerous. A boy can get "over his head" fairly easily so supervision should always be conspicuous. A good overall safety policy is for the student to check the prerequisites with the instructor, thus satisfying the instructor that he is ready to attempt the next stunt sequence.

It is suggested that a minimum of four spotters be posted at all times that the tramp is in use. Spotters must be alert and keep the performer on the tramp. There are occasions when it is obviously best to help the performer off the tramp by helping him maintain balance, but most often the spotters' task is to keep the performer from falling off the tramp. It is recommended that the tramp be folded and locked when supervision is not available.

Description of Activities

Stunt (1) : BOUNCING

PREREQUISITES: Warning about bouncing too high.

DESCRIPTION: Simply jump up and down on the tramp using the arms to depress the tramp, for lift and balance.

MAJOR CUES: Flex your legs as you start to rise from the bottom of your bounce. The eyes should be focused on a spot at the end of the tramp. Control is the objective - not height. As you contact the tramp, force your arms down so you can drop deeper into the tramp; thus the tramp will throw you higher.

TEACHING PROCEDURES: Usually bouncing comes naturally; however, the separation of the feet just as contact is made with the tramp to a distance of twelve to eighteen inches is sometimes a problem. The major difficulty is the use of the arms. Generally the arms are used to aid in attaining height and to maintain balance. To attain height the arms are lifted quickly as one rises from the bottom of the bounce.

This arm lift is, of course, coordinated with the leg spring. The arm lift is usually forward and to the side with the arms slightly bent. Some movement of the arms is essential if balance is to be maintained during flight. The higher the bounce, the more arm movement is required for balance purposes. Generally the arms should be kept slightly in front of the body and taken behind the lateral plane only at the bottom of the bounce in order to initiate another lift.

FREQUENT ERRORS: Kicking the tramp, uncoordinated arm swing, legs together, and arms going too high and too far to the rear.

SAFETY PRECAUTIONS: Use moderate height, four spotters, and insist that the student attempt to remain in the center of the tramp. Practice killing the bounce by flexing the knees.

PROGRESSION OR COMBINATIONS: After learning to bounce, practice one-half and full pirouettes occasionally.


PREREQUISITES: Good Bounce, control, and practice doing the half turn.

DESCRIPTION: Rise from the tramp; execute a full turn before landing:

MAJOR CUES: Start the twist with the arms. Keep the feet together and the arms in close.

TEACHING PROCEDURES: Just as the tramp begins to lift the body from the bottom of the bounce, throw the right hand across the chest and turn the head to the left. As the body turns, allow the left hand to fold against the chest beside the right hand. Try to turn the head quickly and return the eyes to the end of the tramp without focusing on any object as the head turns. Stop the twist by throwing the right hand back and stopping the head.

FREQUENT ERRORS: Waiting too long to start the twist.

SAFETY PRECAUTIONS: Stand-by spotters should be provided.

Have fun with you trampolining!
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