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Trampoline facts & trivia

World somersault record

On 18th September 2003 Brian Hudson broke the world record for the most consecutive somersaults completing an amazing 3,333 at the Jumpers Rebound Centre in Gillingham. This broke the previous record of 3,025 by a considerable margin.

Nissen's kangaroo

After he had invented the trampoline (named after the Spanish word for diving board - el trampolin) George Nissen set about publicizing it with demonstrations to avoid hiring a sales force, by the 1950's however he got more ambitious and he hired a trampolining kangaroo - on some occasions he even bounced along with it:

For more about Trampolining history see:

For more about Nissen check out:

What common language?

Australians call a Straddle Jump a 'Split Pike', for clarification a Pike is therefore called a 'Closed Pike' - just to smooth things along in 2006/7 BG started referring to it as a Piked Straddle (as opposed, no doubt, to the Straddled Pike which could leave anglers confused);

In the USA they hedge their bets on these moves and have the 'Straddle Jump Pike' and the 'Pike Jump'.

Paul Kitchen tells me there used to be a move in UK a few centuries back called a 'backward and forward split jump' - ouch.

The Aussies also call Somersaults 'Saults' which links more etymologically to the original term 'Salto'.

Alternative trampolines

Not content with simply learning 'standard' trampoline skills the proliferation of backyard trampolines in North America has lead to the development of entirely new sporting avenues such as 'trampoline wrestling', 'velcro jumping' and 'trampoline biking', not to mention the development of floating 'water trampolines' (like backyard trampolines in very large rubber tyres).


Ken Kovach is a "Guinness World Record Holder"... on the CBS Live! with Regis show Ken set a world record by performing 129 revolutions of a Hula Hoop around his body while somersaulting for one minute - this happened on 18/9/2000.

Stick jumps?

The 10th skill in the USA Trampolining Level 1 & Level 2 routines is "straight jump to a stick" - umm.

Star Wars

In Star Wars, the Empire Strikes Back, in the scene where Luke knocks Darth Vader off the platform after jumping from the ceiling, Luke jumps down also. Look closely at the bottom-left part of the screen you can hear a 'boing' and see Luke's head bob back up onto the screen.  Apparently even Jedi knights need to cushion their falls - in this case with an off-shot trampoline!