House of Air, the popular trampoline park near Crissy Field, isn't just for kids birthday parties and corporate retreats. There's actually a serious workout to be had here.
It's easy to smile in a roomful of trampolines on a Saturday morning, where we congregants were directed to our own spacious trampoline beds, each separated by padding to prevent double-bouncing. Our instructor, Carlee (also the facility’s Safety Manager), wasted no time teaching us the “safety stop” lest we got out of control—you've got to know the importance of keeping both feet on the trampoline to protect your ankles and knees, and how to fall should the need arise.
For anyone who hasn't been on a trampoline since, oh, fifth grade, it definitely takes some warming up to get comfortable. “Go at your own pace and really focus on your form,” Carlee instructs. Skill level may seem like a funny consideration here, but there's variety of experience among the participants. The main emphasis is on your core: “Keeping your core tight and flexed," Carlee says. "Jumping is primarily a core work.”
For our first challenge, a 6-minute cardio circuit that included basic aerial exercises like jacks and spins got our bodies sweating and hearts thumping fast. Carlee says that jumping for 10 minutes is equivalent to running for 30 minutes, “and is also low impact," she add, taking the stress of weight on your joints. Next up: a 9-minute circuit of strength exercises from squats to planks and mountain climbers (definitely harder on a trampoline); followed by repeated circuits and an abs circuit at the end. Just try to do one sit-up on a trampoline!
We all left class with sore shoulders, huge, childlike grins, and the sense or reward that comes with a killer workout. Ross, a guy in our class, noted that "you get what you put in...It always leaves me with a feeling of satisfaction knowing that I pushed myself harder than I normally would," he says.
- Bare feet isarebest for traction. We suggest wearing fitted clothing.
- Hair should be pulled back out of your face. Warning: Bouncing ponytails can be weapons!
- Use the bathroom before class, seriously.
- Give yourself enough time before class to park and sign the mandatory waiver