Trampoline Mechanics – How Does It Work?

Published: 23rd May 2011
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There’s no denying the fact that trampoline are a great deal of fun. Whether you’re a young child or just young at heart, there’s nothing else in this world that can compare to the weightless feeling you have when you can jump three or four feet into the air without even really trying. The design of the trampoline is very simple, and it still uses the same trampoline parts that were used to make the original devices way back in the 1930’s. However, if you’re interested in learning a little bit more about how the trampoline provides such a sensation without the aid of motors or wings, here are some facts about trampoline mechanics.
The most important parts of this simple machine are the trampoline springs. Without the invention of the metal spring, which can store energy in its tight coils, bend and stretch, and then expend energy by quickly returning to its original shape, the flight of fancy provided by the trampoline simply wouldn’t be possible. It was this important fact that George Nissan, the inventor of the modern trampoline realized as he was watching some circus performers. Nissan noticed that the safety net slung far below the trapeze artists was just elastic enough, that when they fell from a great height, it would rebound, sending their bodies into the air for one last flip or trick before they dismounted.
Nissan wanted to devise a way to recreate this rebounding motion over and over again so that athletes could practice their tricks without climbing up and down the trapeze tower every time they fell. So instead of rope, he decided to use some sturdy canvas fabric, and by stretching it over an iron frame with the assistance of some metal springs, the modern trampoline was born. It’s important to realize that the trampoline springs are the most important element of the trampoline’s design. Without them, the bouncing motion of the trampoline would be impossible.
Because the trampoline is so dependent on the springs to retain its elastic nature, it’s important to pay close attention to the condition of these trampoline parts every time you use it. Leaving a trampoline outdoors all year round can be devastating for the trampoline springs, causing them to rust, bend, or even stretch. When the springs are compromised, they can lead to serious injury because they’ll no longer provide a smooth rebounding motion. Make sure to inspect your platform before every jumping session and use a trampoline cover to protect them.


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