The Frustrations of a bellicon Researcher, or How Rebounding Made Me Lose My Hair

John Hines 03.05.2019


If the subtitle of this article is making you worry about your hairline, let me be clear: male pattern baldness is not a side effect of mini-trampoline exercise. At least, not directly…

My name is John Hines, and I’m the Communications Director of bellicon USA. For the last few years, I’ve written a number of articles for the bellicon website, most of which were about current research related to health, fitness and rebounding exercise. Over the next few months, I’ll be doing this more frequently, with topics ranging from detoxification to osteoporosis to workplace fitness. As much as I hope that you’ll find these articles informative and thought-provoking, I should warn you that the more you learn about rebounding exercise, and the more you share what you’ve learned, the more you’ll feel like you’ve taken crazy pills. 

Let me explain…

In 2012, soon after beginning my job at bellicon, I had a long discussion with Philipp von Kunhardt, the company’s CEO, regarding health and fitness claims for the bellicon mini-trampoline that seemed improbable to me.

It wasn’t the first time that we’d had this discussion. At that time, Philipp and I had been friends for several years, and I had, on many occasions, initiated the argument that no fitness device, and certainly not a fun, bouncy one, could address all of the health and fitness benefits that he and his website claimed his trampoline could.

However, now that I was a bellicon employee, I was sure that I’d be expected to share with customers all of the company’s health claims, and not just the ones I personally found credible. Having had a very dedicated doctor for a father, who was also a medical researcher, and being a long-term cancer survivor myself, I was very guarded when it came to accepting health information from sources other than major medical research hospitals, organizations like the National Institutes of Health, or reputable peer-reviewed journals, and I felt I should make my position clear to Philipp. To his credit, Philipp took all of the steam out of my self-righteous zeal by saying, “That’s great! So, here’s your assignment: research each of our health claims and confirm whether it’s true or not, and if you think anything’s doubtful, we’ll remove it from our website.” So, I started researching. 

After weeks of slogging through scores of lengthy, unimaginably boring, as-confusing-as-Egyptian-hieroglyphics scientific studies, I returned to Philipp and said, “I think your mini-trampoline does a lot more than you think it does,” and we began revising the bellicon website to include the newly discovered research. I also started talking incessantly to everyone I knew about the amazing bellicon fitness trampoline that could take a couple of minutes of bouncing and convert it into extraordinary cardio fitness, bone strength, improved balance, enhanced immune system, accelerated fat burning…and then I started to see that look on their face, like I’d joined a cult and was making this stuff up. They thought I’d taken crazy pills.

Fortunately, even if I am crazy,  I’m not alone. Everyone I work with at bellicon USA not only owns a bellicon, but uses it, and knows from experience just how great it is. They’re also familiar with the research which shows that a bellicon workout is probably the most complete, most beneficial form of exercise you can possibly do. Period. But my coworkers also know how surprisingly difficult it is to convince someone who’s completely unfamiliar with rebounding, or has never set foot on a bellicon, how much they have to gain from it , often because they think you're exaggerating or trying to earn a sales commission (which we don’t)…or that you’re just plain nutty. When this happens, as it frequently does, we bellicon veterans just look wearily at each other and nod, like shell-shocked soldiers who know they're fighting an uphill battle for a just cause.

To be honest, the subtitle of this article, “how rebounding made me go bald,” is an exaggeration, which is something we researchers should avoid. The truth is that I began losing my hair long before I came to bellicon. However, pulling my hair out for seven years over the fact that so few people believe how great our product is hasn't helped at all. (Plus, my father was bald.)

I do hope you get the opportunity to read some of my upcoming articles, and should you find yourself becoming a bellicon believer in the process, don’t worry: you may feel crazy, but you're not alone.

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