I have to admit, I'd never heard of the Bellicon rebounder until someone from their company contacted me. I strongly recommended Needak as the best rebounder out there, so they wanted to see if I'd be willing to test out one of their Bellicons for a review.
I agreed. If there was a better rebounder out there, I wanted to know about it.
I first checked out their site - www.bellicon-usa.com
My initial impressions were very good. I like the idea of no metal springs. As much as I love my Needak, it can be a little loud. If I am watching TV while bouncing, I have to turn the volume up quite a bit to hear comfortably. This has a tendency to slightly annoy anyone in the room with me.
I also liked that they are made in Germany. I own quite a few items that were made in Germany and I know the Germans are serious when it comes to quality. You can expect to pay more, but their items are built to last.
I dug further into the site and noticed the price - they cost twice as much as a Needak! Ouch.
Then I looked for their warranty. Bellicon rebounders have a five year warranty on their standard frame, a five year warranty on the mat, and a one year warranty on the bungees. Needak, by comparison, has a lifetime warranty on their frame, a five year warranty on their mat, and a two year warranty on their springs.
If I'm going to pay twice as much, I would think that Bellicon would be able to at least match Needak's warranty...
Hmm...two positives, two negatives. I guess I was going to have to let the Bellicon speak for itself.
The rebounder arrived a few days later. The first thing I noticed when I opened it - NO nasty chemical smell. Thank goodness! I hate when I buy something that off gasses its chemical fumes in my home (I'm looking at you, new iPad case).
They sent me a 44-inch gray and black non-folding rebounder. Bellicon rebounders come in a variety of colors, but I'm boring so I choose the gray and black.
Assembly was easy. All that was needed was to screw on the legs and, voilà, ready for bouncing.
And bounce I did.
I was instantly impressed with the size of the bounce as well as the gentleness. And the quiet, oh the quiet. All I could hear was my feet touching down on the mat.
I used the Bellicon for a few weeks before I directly compared it to the Needak. Why? I don't know. It sounded good at the time.
During this period I could feel that my leg muscles were getting more of a workout with the bungees. Still, even though I really liked the Bellicon, I wasn't sure that the additional cost was worth it.
Next came the direct comparison. I placed the Needak and Bellicon side-by-side. The Bellicon rebounder was larger and taller, but weighed quite a bit less than the Needak.
Both units were solidly constructed with a steel frame. Both looked like high-quality units.
But the real difference came when bouncing between the two.
First the Bellicon. I felt light as air with the gentle and quiet up and down.
Next the Needak. Ugh, it felt like jumping up and down on the floor. I couldn't believe the difference! I felt disappointment wash over me. I loved my Needak. I have owned it for almost a decade...
Back and forth I went - jumping on the Bellicon for a minute or so, than bouncing on the Needak. Each time I switched to the Needak I felt jarred and heavy. Bouncing on it suddenly felt like a lot of work.
This especially shocked me because I've done the same thing with comparing the Needak to other, cheaper models. And the results were the same. The Needak felt like a light bounce while the cheaper models felt like jumping up and down on concrete.
The fact that the quality of the Belllicon rebounder made my Needak felt like a cheap, sporting-goods model was astonishing to me.
Bungees are so much better than springs...
Now I'm not saying that the Needak is in the same category as the cheapies. Not even close. You have to be careful with the cheapies because they can hurt you if you bounce on them long-term. The Needak has no such issues.
In fact, the Needak is a very high-quality unit. It's just that the Bellicon rebounder is SOOO much better.
So is a Bellicon worth it? Is it really worth the extra money?
I say, unequivocally, yes. The bungee technology makes this rebounder quieter, more effective, and MUCH more fun.
I still have reservations about their warranty - it really should be better.
But after examining the unit and using it for two months, I really don't see how the frame or mat could be damaged with normal use. It looks like it will last just as long as the Needak, which means pretty much forever.
The bungees have to be replaced, just like the springs in the traditional rebounders. But changing out the bungees is super easy, fast, and safe.
Why safe, you ask? I've changed out the springs on my Needak. Not only was it incredibly difficult and strenuous, but I had to wear thick gloves to keep from pinching my fingers and hands in the tightly coiled springs. NOT something I want to do again...
Still trying to decide between a Needak and Bellicon? For more of a direct comparison between the two, see my best rebounders page.
Wishing you safe and happy bouncing!
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