September 23, 2009 // Local

Golden moments on the trampoline

Up and down, up and down. Bouncing, bouncing.

My wife Rose and I have been talking for a few years about getting a trampoline for our daughter, who will soon turn seven. We thought it would be a good way for Heather to work off some energy and enhance some coordination skills.

So when I found a bargain, we broke down and made the purchase. My efforts on Labor Day weekend included assembling the trampoline and the protective netting “cage” — a task in itself considering I am pretty mechanically-challenged. It makes me thankful that I’m an editor and did not have to follow the pursuits of Our Lord and his foster father, St. Joseph, in the field of carpentry.

That being said, what would take an hour or two to assemble, took me about six hours, so it seemed. At the end of the construction, my 6-year-old assistant and I were putting up the final touches in the drizzle.

That night my bones ached, mostly from pulling the springs from the tarp to the frame.
Now the fun begins. It seems my little darling will only jump on the trampoline if I’m jumping with her.

So I’ve learned in the last few weeks, that jumping on a trampoline is one of the best workouts one could ask for. Trust me, it burns not just calories, but joints, ankles, hips, wrists, elbows and muscles that I didn’t know even existed.

There’s no rule that prohibits a 44-year-old dad from jumping on the trampoline. I’ve learned to limit my time on the trampoline to 15 minutes, or 300 jumps with rest periods between every set of 100.

It also gives me a few minutes each day to share with Heather and have some fun. Time flies and one day in the distant future she won’t want any part of jumping on the trampoline with the “old man” around. So, I’ll offer up those achy bones and sore muscles now and thank God for the present time I have with my daughter.

In a few weeks, weather will dictate disassembling the trampoline for winter storage in the shed. Until then, if you pass by and see a “geezer” out in the backyard playing with a kid, don’t think I lost my marbles, rather I found some golden moments.

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