The Mini-Trampoline Victory

trampoline jumping

Bouncing on a trampoline to self regulate and learn body movement controlI recently had a huge "aha moment" with one of my favorite and most recommended therapy tools, the mini-trampoline.  I have been using this in the past for high quality, intense, and easily accessible proprioceptive input.  I have used it over the years to help kids potty train, cease chewing on their shirts, slow down crashing into everything, improve their ability to sit for meals, help with transitions, improve visual functions and lately improve their ability to sleep at night.

I have parents purchase a 42”-48” mini trampoline from a local sports store. I ask the parents to have their child jump for 60 seconds (longer if they desire) 3 times a day. First prior to eating breakfast or going to school, secondly prior to homework (if prior to dinner) for just 60 seconds, and the third time before bath/shower time (prior to bedtime); this last time I do not encourage going for more than 60 seconds.

The average child between the ages of 3-12 will jump approximately 100-120x’s in 60 seconds.  What is happening is that the child is giving themselves a healthy sensory diet of proprioceptive input which is a building block for their overall sensory motor development. 

I have parents telling me that their child is going to bed easier and sleeping deeper now. In the past month, a 4 year old girl who had frequent bouts (30+) of throwing up (regurgitation) has dropped down to 1-3x’s every few days and she has been taken off meds (Zantac).  The parents and I feel that the trampoline was the main facilitator of this welcome behavior.