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How to Choose an Exercise Mat?

A gymnastics mat is one of the most essential training accessories. It can be used for gymnastics and athletics, as well as various martial arts and other sports. The purpose of a gymnastics mat is to serve as a landing surface that prevents you from getting injured. Because they are used in a number of sports that significantly differ from each other, there are several types of this accessory available.

We choose gymnastics mats according to:

  • a given sports activity,
  • material used,
  • thickness,
  • surface treatment.

Sports Activity

  • Gymnastics – gymnastics mats should have anti-slip treatment, at least on one side. They should also be at least 4-5 cm thick. This is the most common mat size and can be considered the default.
  • Acrobatic gymnastics – here, mats at least 10-cm thick are necessary (called tumbling mats) to ensure safe landing. For landings made from greater heights, it is recommended to use mats at least 20 cm thick.
  • Martial arts – the important aspect here are the mat’s anti-slip quality. The mats are usually 4-6 cm thick. If you are a beginner and are just learning how to fall down and such, it’s better to choose a thicker 10-cm mat.

Material Used
The mats differ mainly in the surface material. We offer 3 basic options:

  • synthetic leather (PU)
  • PVC
  • Plawil (durable heavy-duty sacking with a very long service life) – great durability and long service life

The absolute majority of mats are filled with enforced long-lasting foam.

Mat Thickness
Ideal mat thickness depends on whether the mat is used for landing, exercising or both.

  • Mats that serve as exercise pads, landing pads for martial arts (judo, aikido…) or gymnastics mats are usually 4-10 cm thick and are the most common type. They have a multi-purpose use.
  • Landing mats, also known as tumbling mats, are usually 20-40 cm thick. It’s the only way to ensure comfortable and safe landing while jumping from a great height.

Surface Treatment
The surface can be:

  • Smooth on both sides in cases when a slightly skiddy surface is not a problem or is even required.
  • Anti-skid surface on one side to prevent the mat from moving on the ground.
  • Anti-skid surface on both sides in if you don’t want the mat to move on the ground and also don’t want to skid on it while you are exercising.

Some types of mats have enforced corners that allow them to maintain a better shape and protect them from side impacts.

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