Being a Kinesiologist I am always looking for ways to help my clients maintain their wellness. It doesn’t matter if we are young or old, wellness brings with it more options for living our best life.
One of the biggest challenges for men and women over 50 is having and maintaining good levels of bone density. One in three women and one in five men are likely to have an osteoporosis related bone density issue. But it is not just this age group that are having bone related issues. Lack of a good nutritious diet and poor exercise regimes are proving key factors in bone issues in all age groups in our society.
Bone Health is an Urgent Priority
Let’s jump right in, because in my view there is no time to waist when it comes to getting on top of our bone health. Without bone health we have no structure – no frame on which to hang this beautiful body.
Our bones provide our framework. They make up our skeletal system. Bones are cushioned by cartilage held in place by tendons and ligaments. These tendons and ligaments then attach to muscles. The muscles work together to keep our frame in check. Without our bones we would lack the ability to move, stand, sit, breathe.. All our organs would not have their space to work properly. We would be a mass of muscle, like a blob on the ground.
What do Bones Need for Health?
According to the Martini Fundamentals of Anatomy and Physiology (5th edition, page 51) we need the following for maintenance of healthy bones:
- Regular exercise
- Vitamins A, D, C,
- Dietary calcium (from green vegetables)
- Normal levels of growth hormones, thyroid hormones, sex hormones, parathyroid hormone, calcitonin and calcitriol.
What Regular Exercise can we take to Maintain Healthy Bones?
Bone strength is dependent on motion. This motion needs to be regular and consistent. It can’t be done once in a while, or even once or twice a week. It needs to be a consistent daily motion like taking daily exercise. How many of us begin an exercise programme to get fed up quickly and lapse in our efforts once again.
For bone health and to maintain good mineral density levels we need a type of exercise that offers weight bearing force. That means exercise that helps us work against gravity. Rebounding does exactly this – in the very action of each bound on the mini-trampoline we are literally creating the situation where we work against gravity. In fact, approximately three times our g-force is created when rebounding and this is the level needed to help our bones stay healthy.
What is Rebounding?
Rebounding is a form of exercise that involves bounding lightly on a mini-trampoline. This can be done keeping the feet on the surface of the rebounder, or jumping slightly off the rebounder. It is a form of exercise that can be done at home with some light music for about 20 minutes daily to bring about major health benefits.
What Results can We Expect from Rebounding
Here are just two studies regarding rebounding and bone density/strength –
The first was in 2015 which compared aerobic dance training on a mini-trampoline and on a hard wooden floor for bone resorption, health related fitness, balance and foot plantar pressure in women. (Journal of the Medical Association of Thailand, September 2015.)
The study showed that performing the floor exercises in a mini-trampoline increased bone formation and decreased bone resorption as well as improving health related fitness, balance and leg muscular strength.
The second study was in 2016. This study looked at competitive trampolining and its influences on trabecular bone structure, bone size and bone strength.
Here is what the study said:
‘Trampolinists’ bone size and strength at both the radius and tibia were higher than controls (group who did not trampoline). Furthermore, trampolinists have denser and thicker trabeculae coupled with a larger bone adding to higher bone strength.(Journal of Sport and Health Science 5, December 2016.)
For me and you, the most effective results will come from daily rebounding. By making rebounding a daily experience you can:
- Boost your oxygen uptake better than when running
- Improve your cardio vascular activity
- Improve bone mineral density
- Improve muscle tone
- Boost lymphatic drainage
- Boost mood
- Lower Blood Pressure
- Strengthening blood capillaries
- Work every cell in the body
All these benefits were noted by NASA scientists back in 1979 when their studies found that rebounding was 68% more effective than running on a treadmill. They also noted that oxygen uptake was better with rebounding than with running. Rebounding for a shorter period of time did more for cardiovascular health than running.
What Impact Does Rebounding have on the Body?
Another positive about rebounding on our health and wellbeing is that when rebounding the entire body shares the g-force impact, making it a low-impact exercise. This low-impact is spread evenly across all main joints – knees, hips, lower back, spine and neck. Where as with running there was high impact on ankles and knees.
I don’t know about you, but I personally have many stories I can tell regarding injuries I received when running – the sore ankles and knees, pulled muscles, etc. But since I have been rebounding I have not had any of these issues. That is not to say that once can’t have injuries from rebounding. I have had clients report that they have aggravated lower back problems, had major detox experiences, felt very sick and overstretched the small muscles in their abdomen and pelvic areas because they didn’t follow a gentle introduction to rebounding.
That is why I have created two programmes that are focused on making rebounding easy and accessible for over 40’s.
Rebound For Wellness – Simple and Effective Programmes to get you Rebounding Every Day
The first programme is a Basic Rebound For Wellness Programme. It has 20 weeks of videos that bring the rebounder from just one gentle minute rebounding each day to 20 minutes each day. This programme keeps the rebounding at a level that is achievable for almost everyone. The great thing about this programme is you can stay at a week or level for as long as you wish, making sure you are ready for the next video. You can also go back if you say, didn’t get rebounding for a number of weeks.
The second – Intermediate Programme also runs for 20 weeks and is an excellent additions for the first programme. It helps you begin to lift your legs while rebounding bringing even more toning to the smaller muscles of the pelvis and abdomen. Again it is really important that you work at a pace that is achievable for you, so stay at whatever week you need to and for as long as you need to.
One of the key findings around managing Osteoporosis is the need for consistent weight bearing exercise. Rebound for Wellness is created with exactly this in mind. At the end of these two programmes you will have been rebounding for at least 40 weeks. If you decided to stay at a specific week for longer, then you may well have been rebounding for the whole year on these two programmes. That is consistent weight bearing exercise at its best.
But remember, for the best outcome and in my experience, Rebounding needs to be done in a safe way. Introduce yourself to rebounding gradually and slowly. If you have fallen away from your daily rebounding, make the decision to get back on that rebounder and go back to the basic programme so you don’t over do it.
The intention of Rebound for Wellness is to get you to the point were you are providing your bones with enough gravitational force to allow them to replace old cells with new cells and absorb calcium through weight bearing exercise which will help to make them harder and stronger.
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