Olympian Rea Lenders about the jumping craze4/12/2019
Olympic trampoline gymnast Rea Lenders offers advice on safety for Jump XL
Anybody who frequently visits the website or social channels of Jump XL, has undoubtedly seen the brand new safety video. With a very familiar face! None other than Olympic trampoline gymnast Rea Lenders offers visitors of parks of the European market leader advice on safety. Rea tells all about her journey towards becoming a top notch gymnast on the trampoline, and how she feels about the jumping craze.
Trampolines: love at first sight
She was just six years old, but it was love at first sight. Little Rea and her parents happened to stumble upon a trampoline demonstration at the local mall in Hoogezand. “I was mesmerized”, says Rea. “The trainer encouraged me to jump and immediately invited me to a try-out at the club.” It didn’t took the talent long to qualify for the national selection. At thirteen, Rea competed at the World Championship for adults. “Al those experiences made the sport fun and inspiring. I kept wanting to be better and accomplish more.”
Advice on jumping safely
Today, Rea can look back on a successful career of no less than 29 years. She is a ten time national champion and competed twice in the Olympics. Once in Athens in 2004, and in London in 2012. Although she said farewell to competitive trampoline gymnastics in 2016, she hasn’t burned all her bridges yet. Her experience encouraged her to discover another side of the sport. At present, Rea advises Jump XL on safety. She also developed a fitness program for the instructors of the trampoline parks.
When Jump XL approached Rea to cooperate in a safety video, she didn’t hesitate for a bit. “Trampoline jumping is my life. I want others to have just as much fun doing it, as I do. But, in a safe manner. I want everyone to have a great day at Jump XL without any injuries. When I started jumping, the first thing I learned was stopping safely and bending my knees. For 29 years, I jumped at least thirty hours a week. I followed the rules, kept myself together and I never had any serious injuries.”
Trampoline parks and gymnastics: a match!
Rea encourages the current trend of the new generation of trampoline parks that are conquering the world. “I am more than happy to share my experience and knowledge with young talented jumpers. Jumping at a trampoline park is the perfect way to incite love for trampoline gymnastics. However, jumping for fun or for sport, differs greatly from each other. The official competitive trampolines are very different from the ones in a park. At Jump XL the trampolines are more rigid and that’s a good thing. If they were the same, you would jump eight meters high! ”
So, if the trampolines differ, does that also mean that the way of jumping is different? Rea: “Absolutely. I could never do what a free runner like Bart van der Linden does at Jump XL. Olympian or not. It doesn’t matter if you are a gymnast or a fun jumper: it is so much fun! Everybody should challenge themselves and take a leap of faith. Jumping on a trampoline is a great work-out and parks like Jump XL are suitable for all ages. There are no excuses!”
Curious about the video? Watch Rea give out safety instructions here: safety and rules