Best Gym Mats
Whether you come here today for commercial reasons or for personal reasons, you probably already understand why owning a gym mat (or mats) is important when you perform basic exercises. Even simple workouts such as pushups, sit-ups, crunches, planks, and even jumping jacks can be safer and improved when you perform them on a gym mat. Of course, this is something that can also make gymnastics safer as a whole. Either way, for fitness enthusiasts, it is a good product to own but you need to be fully aware of what to look for when buying one. Even though it really is simple at its core, the best options out there will offer comfort, stabilization, and will be crafted of high-quality materials. And, before we get into the beef of this guide, let’s take a look at some of the best models on the market currently.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 2.5 hrs of research
Tons of sizes can be chosen from
Provides excellent shock absorption
Made of 100 percent recycled rubber
OUR TOP PICKS FOR THE BEST GYM MATS
Tons of sizes can be chosen from
Provides excellent shock absorption
Made of 100 percent recycled rubber
Tends to attract dust and footprints
The sizes can be inconsistent
Due to the fact that the “gold” option on this list is made with 100 percent recycled rubber, it can be used both indoors and outdoors effectively. Also, it provides great shock absorption and comfort.Read more
As was mentioned, this really does offer fantastic comfort for your feet. However, it also can absorb shock when you perform high-intensity exercises.
Again, this is suitable for both indoor and outdoor uses. Either way, the rubber flooring is not going to slide around while you are on it due to the anti-slip nature of the rubber itself.
Nothing will last forever but this floor covering is certainly going to last you a long time (granted you treat it correctly). The recycled rubber that is utilized is both wear and abrasion-resistant, after all.
Rubber-Cal provides you with an extensive list of size options to choose from. You can go as small as four-by-three feet or as large as four-by-ten feet (there are also two thickness options available). In spite of this, though, some users have claimed the sizes can be inconsistent.
When the time comes to transport this mat, it can be rolled up more compactly. It does not appear that the seller includes a carrying strap (or even Velcro straps), though.
Even though this can be one of the more costly gym mats on the market, its recycled rubber construction makes it worth it. The stabilization and shock absorption this provides is fantastic.
2. GORILLA MATS
Included with your purchase is a 100 percent microfiber towel
Backed by a 100 percent money-back guarantee
There are two integrated Velcro straps
When you sweat, it is easy to slip with bare feet
For certain, you have to admire the quality of Gorilla Mats. This model, in specific, offers an excellent combination of comfortability, portability, and toughness.Read more
The top of this model is equipped with high-density, non-slip material that delivers stabilization and comfort at the same time.
What is nice is the bottom of this is equipped with a unique circle pattern. This will enhance the grip it supplies on surfaces. However, when you begin to sweat, the top becomes quite slick.
For the price, the quality and subsequent durability better be ideal. And, thanks to the premium non-toxic materials that are utilized, it is safe to say this is the case.
At six-by-four-foot, this is going to be large enough for a wide variety of uses and exercises. The ¼-inch thickness, admittedly, is a bit thinner than other models.
Due to the two Velcro straps that have been integrated, it keeps the mat in place when you roll it up for storage and transport.
To account for the issue with slipping (when you begin to sweat), you may want to use this with your gym shoes on. This will negate the one main issue with this design as everything else is phenomenal.
Made of premium non-toxic materials
There are other sizes available
Comes with a storage bag
It is not the lightest option out there
If you need a lot of space to work with, then you will probably love this six-by-six large mat. This is combined with the ½-inch thickness of dense foam for enhanced foot comfort.Read more
It is the ½-inch of dense foam thickness that provides comfort for you. All in the meanwhile, it is also not overly squishy to make it harder to perform workouts.
This is not going to slip on hardwood floors but to prevent yourself from slipping, you may want to wear shoes. Some added traction is going to help you significantly.
Thanks to the fact that Square36 designed their model with premium non-toxic materials, it can be used for everything and is going to hold up to mild abuse.
Even if the six-by-six-foot size is not large enough, there are bigger options available. Of course, there are also smaller options to select from, as well.
Though this is not the lightest mat on the market, it comes with two storage straps and a storage bag. This gives you a dedicated bag for transport, which is nice.
As you can see, this deserves all the praise it has received from previous buyers. Again, you will pay the price here but the quality and convenience make it worth it.
4. BALANCEFROM INTERLOCKING
The pieces connect easily together
When needed, the pieces are very easy to clean
Features ½-inch thickness of high-density foam
During high-intensity workouts, the pieces do not stay together very well
As opposed to various other options out there, this is actually comprised of interlocking tiles. The individual tiles will lock together and then you can utilize them as a whole.Read more
The ½-inch of high-density EVA foam that is integrated here is going to cushion your spine, elbows, knees and hips while you are on hard floors. In the meanwhile, it is also going to deliver support for you.
Now, the tiles themselves are equipped with non-skid texturing and this enhances their stabilization. They do need to be interlocked together, however, and they can sometimes come apart during high-impact workouts.
Each individual piece is designed of high-quality material (EVA foam) but as mentioned, collectively they can struggle to stay in place at all times.
This option will provide with you 24 square feet of coverage but there are larger options available (such as 144 square feet) if you require more surface area.
Because these can be connected together, it also means that they can be stored individually. Admittedly, though, together they can be a bit cumbersome to transport.
Really, this type of gym mat is only going to appeal to a select few of you. Its interlocking design is ingenious, in concept, but can also be a nuisance depending on how you want to use it.
5. PROSOURCEFIT TRI-FOLD
The tri-fold design is very convenient
Provides solid slip resistance
The foam interior keeps its shape over time
The foam is really firm
It is a bit narrow
One of the most convenient aspects of this next model is that it folds. So, this eliminates the need to deal with the hassle of rolling the mat up for storage and portability purposes.Read more
This is equipped with dense EPE foam and this delivers the goods in regard to the comfort. Of course, as one buyer noted, the foam is quite firm (but this also adds ideal support).
Depending on the applied pressure, this is not going to slip often. For movement-intensive exercises, though, it may end up slipping on hardwood floors.
The foam itself is extremely resilient and will hold its shape over time. In addition, the vinyl covering will resist wear and stretching. Indeed, the quality here is superb.
The six-foot length is going to be ideal for just about everyone. Now, the width is another story at only two feet. Admittedly, this is very narrow and may not be suitable for your needs.
As was alluded to, this bad boy folds (it is actually a tri-fold design). In addition to the fact that this is easier than rolling, there are two integrated carrying handles.
What this offers is supreme durability, ideal support and fairly good stability. Sure, it is a bit narrow but granted this is not an issue for you this is a terrific option.
6. SOOZIER FOLDING
It will not slip on hardwood floors
The water-resistant material is easy to clean
It is comprised of four individual panels
The handle is not very sturdy
The materials could be higher in quality
Soozier presents another option that is designed to be folded instead of rolled. Though the utilized materials could have been more heavy-duty, this remains a highly effective option.Read more
This right here is actually one of the thickest options on the market. It sports a whopping two inches of high-density EPE foam for your convenience.
On hardwood floors, it is not uncommon for this to slip a little. It all depends on how much you are moving on it, though, as heavier movements will result in more slippage.
It is actually noted by a few users that the utilized material here is not the best. Still, the two inches of EPE foam is covered with a durable PU leather cover.
Outside of the two-inch thick nature, this is six-by-four-foot in size. If need be, there are additional lengths available (such as 10 feet).
The integrated handle has been criticized for its lack of sturdiness but there are hook and loop strips on all four sides that allow you to join the entire mat together.
It is not too tricky to see why this has been a favorite amongst various buyers. Though some flaws are present, the overall design is stable, easy to clean, and comfortable.
7. SIVAN HEALTH AND FITNESS
Many different colors are available
There is a removable carry strap integrated
It sports a solid amount of padding
When sweating, the top becomes a little too slick
Sivan Health and Fitness engineered their yoga mat with a rubbed surface on the bottom and a smooth surface on the top. This makes for a nice combination of stability and comfort (though the top can be a little too slick).Read more
In spite of the fact that this is not as thick as other options in the world, it is designed of memory foam. Overall, there is enough padding present to provide protection for your knees and joints.
The good news is the ribbed surface will grip the floor for enhanced stability. The bad news is the top will become slick when you begin sweating.
The memory foam that was engineered here is going to last for a long time, granted you store the mat properly and treat it with care.
At 71 inches in length (which is just barely under six-foot) and 24 inches in width (which is two-foot exactly) this will be long enough for most and wide enough for slightly less.
As you can see from the photos, this can be rolled up and then carried with the integrated strap. For the record, this same strap is removable when you do not need it.
If you tend to sweat profusely when you partake in any form of exercising, you may be leery to buy this. But, there are always remedies for this issue, so you should still be okay with this model. For everyone else, this is an easy thumbs-up.
Made of durable foam
A carrying strap is included
Offers a ½-inch of thickness
Shoes can’t be worn on this
Sweating can cause the top to become slick
AmazonBasics is known for designing high-quality, affordable products. Their products will typically not blow you away but they always seem to deliver the goods. Yep, that is exactly the case here, as well.Read more
The thick layer of cushioning that is provided, which is ½-inch, for the record, will support your body and also cushion your feet during exercises.
In large part to the textured surface of the bottom, this is not going to move on most surfaces. Yet, for the top, as one user pointed out, it can become a slip-and-slide if you drip sweat on it.
To combat the slick top, you may be thinking to wear your shoes. However, if you do, the soles of your shoes will end up scuffing this mat as it simply can’t withstand the abuse.
This is just over six-foot in length and two-foot exactly in width. This is a fairly standard size but do note that the width makes for a narrower surface area.
Portability is where this really shines. First off, it can be rolled up compactly. Secondly, there is an elastic carrying strap that allows you to carry this over your shoulder.
If you know the reputation for AmazonBasics consumer products then nothing about this should shock you too much. Overall, this is a great affordable option.
9. INCSTORES FOAM
Any tile can be a corner or border
Many square footage options are available
It is constructed of high-density EVA foam
A lot of static electricity is generated while you move on it
The foam is a little squishy
Along the lines of a previous entry on this list, this one sports individual tiles that need to be interlocked together. It is almost like solving a puzzle but once you do, you can enjoy the benefits of this design.Read more
As with most top-end gym mats in the world, this is constructed with high-density EVA foam.
Admittedly, the tops of these tiles do not offer superb stability. For the most part, you should be fine but do not attempt to get too crazy with your exercises.
The EVA foam that is utilized is non-recycled, non-toxic and also highly durable. Yet, it is pretty squishy and this can become an issue when you need more support.
It has been noted by previous buyers that the individual tiles sometimes do not fit flush with one another. Now, on the bright side, you get to choose how many tiles you want (with several options available).
The more tiles you buy, the more cumbersome they will be to transport. So, you can dictate how portable this model is, quite frankly.
It was mentioned earlier in this guide that if you are not a fan of interlocking tiles you will want to stay away from this option. If the opposite is true, however, knock yourself out.
10. SPRI FITNESS
There are different color options available
Made of thick poly-foam
Integrated is a carrying handle cutout
Not the most durable option out there
A few buyers found it slippery on hardwood floors
Now, this is a great last option if you do not require a ton of space. The reason for this is at 20 inches in width, this is very narrow and does not offer an extended surface area to work with.Read more
SPRI engineered their gym mat with thick, poly-foam for enhanced comfort and support.
On hardwood floors, this is probably going to move a little if you are performing movement-intensive exercises.
A previous buyer left their thoughts about this model and noted that within a couple of weeks, theirs had begun to show signs of wear and tear.
Without question, this is a small exercise mat that is ideal for specific workouts. It is only four-foot in length and is just under two-foot in width.
One thing is for sure, you would be hard-pressed to find a model that is more portable than this. After all, it is smaller and even features a convenient carrying handle cutout.
For isolated use, this will offer some of you exactly what you are looking for. It is simply too small and unstable to be recommended for anything else, though.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
This right here is the main reason why gym mats are effective, in the first place.
One of the primary reasons why you should invest in a gym mat is for safety and protection. After all, when you are performing even the most mundane of exercises, sometimes accidents can occur. In an example where you fall down, having a cushioned surface to soften the blow is going to be ideal. Of course, the same cushioned surface can also provide a stable and comfortable base for your knees and joints. To wrap all this up, gym mats should be comfortable so look for models that are indeed just that.
Yet, what features do you need to keep a special eye on? Well, the first is the thickness of any one model. While you may think the thicker the better, mats that are too thick can be troublesome. Though this extra padding is nice for cushioning, too much thickness can cause you to sink and this can negatively affect your workout performance. At the same time, models that are too thin will not offer much padding or shock absorption properties. Oh, and as for the material, you will often see foam be utilized. There are different types of foams but that will be touched on further in a different section.
Look for both sides of the mat to offer stabilzation.
The last thing you want is for the exercise mat that you are using to slip out from under your feet. After all, this becomes counter-intuitive to the safety that it is supposed to enhance. In order to assess the stability of any given model, you need to analyze the design of both the bottom surface and the top platform. With the former, what you are looking for is a bottom that is going to stick to the surface it is on. This can be accomplished with unique patterns, specific materials (such as rubber) and any sort of texture. It may seem subtle, but an anti-slip bottom is one of the most critical features of any gym mat.
However, why does the top matter? While the top will not dictate how frequently the actual mat moves around, it can cause you to slip if it is too slick. Oftentimes, this will be a greater possibility when you begin to sweat. Clearly, the best models out there will combat this but even if they do not, you can always wear specific gear to help enhance your grip. Also, this is a good time to point out a different type of model you will see. Some will come with interlocking tiles and while this can be nice, ensuring that the tiles will stay firmly together during your workout will be important to keep an eye on.
It is simple; a high-quality gym mat will last longer than one made of low-grade materials.
Unless you want to buy an exercise mat once a year, you should probably place an emphasis on buying a model that is built to last. The main way to ensure this is to look for options that are engineered with high-quality materials. Now, and this is worth mentioning, you can play a role in the longevity, as well. The manner in which you store and treat your mat can go a long way in dictating how long it will last. Back to the matter at hand, though, the materials that are utilized will be the main focal point.
As mentioned, foam is a very popular material in the engineering process of gym mats. And, there are two main types that you will often see. The first is known as ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) foam while the other is known as expanded polyethylene (EPE) foam. Out of the two, EVA foam is actually more durable. It is primarily due to the density and the tear strength advantage that this foam holds over EPE. EVA foam also tends to be more resilient, as well. This is not to insinuate that EPE foam is bad by any means. But, when it comes to longevity, EVA rules. Of course, you will see some options designed with vinyl coverings or even with recycled rubber.
This all comes down to your preferences and how you want to use the mat, honestly.
Right now, it is time to for you to answer a very important question; how much surface area are you going to need? This is extremely vital to answer because it is going to dictate which gym mats you will have interest in. Different models will be outfitted for different purposes and if all you need is a small isolated area, then there is no reason to buy one that is six-by-six-foot, for example. Now, for the average person, what is a good way to determine the size to buy?
Generally speaking, for the width, you should measure the widest part of your stomach and add a foot. For your length, take your height and add six inches. These dimensions should be the minimum size you buy (as you can always buy larger if you want even more space). To make this easier on you, some sellers will provide you with several different sizing choices.
Most models will be portable, admittedly, but there are certain features that can enhance it.
Not all of you will be interested in using your new exercise mat strictly at home. Perhaps you intend to take it with you to the gym or even to a friend’s house. In this instance, it is helpful when it is optimized for transport. Thankfully, most models on the market are so you are in luck. With that being said, not all gym mats are built the same. Two examples of such are rolling models versus folding models. With those that are designed to roll compactly, they should be equipped with straps to secure them so they do not unravel.
As for folding models, these will be easier to work with but will not be as compact. It really is a tradeoff of compactness for convenience, if you think about it. But, either way, you go, it is optimal if an included carrying strap is integrated. With this, it will be much easier to carry around your mat from location to location.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
When you think about it, the main reason you buy a product such as this is for comfort purposes. After all, it is used to provide your body with protection when you perform certain exercises. Two key factors to assess that will make or break the comfort, furthermore, are the thickness and the materials. Then again, those that are too thick may provide too much cushion and this can cause you to sink a little.
Not only does the bottom portion need to grip the surface it is on but the top also needs to be somewhat stable to stand and lie down on. This combination is exactly what you are looking for to ensure the model you pick offers superb stabilization. It sounds simple, right? Well, the problem is not all models out there will feature both. The good news is, speaking for the top surface, you can wear certain gear to increase the grip you receive.
At the end of the day, who really wants to invest in a cheap exercise mat that is comprised of low-grade materials? It is understandable if you are on a tight budget but even if money is a concern, there are affordable options out there that are made with quality in mind. Look for high-quality materials such as EVA and EPE foam and recycled rubber to be utilized.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: Where should you store your model?
For the most part, you can really store your model where you see fit. Clearly, it may not be advisable to do so in direct contact to the sun as the UV rays can cause damage. But, once it is either folded or rolled up, you can stow it away in a closet, under your bed, or any other location you can think of where it will not be damaged. Now, you should also avoid folding your model in an unintended manner as this can cause creases.
q: How do you clean them?
Really, cleaning gym mats is going to be a very simple endeavor. But, you should probably avoid machine washing unless the seller specifically claims their model is suitable for such. To be honest, though, there is no point to risk the damage as cleaning them by hand will not be difficult. Most of the time, this can be accomplished with warm water, mild dish soap, and a soft cloth. Before you finish, just ensure it is fully rinsed and dried (do not do so in direct sunlight).
q: Can you place two of them together?
Let’s say that you are looking for an incredibly large surface area to work with. If you literally can’t find a high-quality model that is of suitable size for you, you can opt to simply connect two mats together. However, there is no guarantee that the two of them are going to stay together. Depending on the model, there may be a unique dot pattern that will allow the two to do so but even then they can come apart. Yet, you can always resort to some mat tape to fix this issue.
q: Why should you invest in an exercise mat, anyway?
If you simply look back to the comfort and stability sections of this guide, then you will have the answer to this question. Truthfully, those are the two main reasons why you would want to invest in a product such as this, in the first place. Additionally, though, exercise mats can also help to protect your flooring if you accidentally drop any weights. This is especially true on hardwood floors.
q: What type of flooring will work the best?
For the most part, the type of flooring you should use a specific model on will be dictated by the size. With smaller mats, they may end up shifting too much on carpet. In this case, hardwood, tile, or even cement floors would be the best. Of course, with big enough surfaces, some models will work just fine on carpet.
q: Can you wear shoes on them?
One of the best ways to combat slippery surfaces, and this was alluded to earlier, is to wear shoes that are designed with well-designed soles. However, is footwear going to ruin a standard gym mat? It all depends on the integrity of the model and the type of materials that are utilized, quite frankly. One specific entry on this list, for example, is not designed to withstand the abuse that footwear can cause. Some extra research may need to be conducted on your part because if you plan to exercise with shoes on, the model you buy will need to be able to withstand the abuse.