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Whether a gymnast has just started tumbling or is an experienced tumbler at home, they will benefit from having gymnastics mats at home. The truth of the matter is a gymnast is never still and soon most of the furniture in your home will be used as an apparatus!
Unfortunately, unlike the gym, a home’s floors aren’t cushioned or very forgiving. If you have a gymnastics mat available to cushion falls, you will be able to encourage your gymnast to practice without getting bruises or potentially getting hurt.
Many people wonder how a gymnast will use a mat at home. The truth is these mats are multi-purpose and can be used for much more than just basic tumbling practice. For instance, your gymnast will love their mat to practice basic tumbling like rolls, walkovers, handstands, or even cartwheels.
Mats will be used by advanced gymnasts to practice standing back tucks and front tucks too. A home gymnastics mat is also perfect for slumber parties, and general horseplay. Mom can even use it for yoga practice.
What to Consider When Buying a Gymnastics Mat for Home Use
If you are considering buying a gymnastics mat for use at home, you need to make several considerations before making a purchase. We have listed the most important features of home mats to consider to help you get the mat you need and want.
A mat that is too thin won’t provide cushioning and protection you want if your gymnast falls while tumbling on it. On the other hand, if the mat is too thick, your gymnast may not be able to practice stunts because their hands or feet will sink into the mat when they aren’t supposed to. Standard mat thickness is about 1 3/8” thick.
Before buying a mat, you need to think about where your gymnast will use it. You also want to make sure it is big enough for a gymnast to practice stunts on. Since mats are offered in a variety of different sizes, it shouldn’t be hard to find a happy medium that fulfils both needs.
Types of Gymnastics Mats You Can Get for Home Practice
There are many different types of mats to choose from when it comes to home use. The most popular mat types are described in detail below.
Folding Mats or Panel Mats
One of the most popular gymnastics mats used in the gym and homes are folding mats. folding mats are offered in many different colors and sizes. They fold-up for easy storage. The most popular size is 4 feet wide by 8 feet long. This type of mat usually has Velcro attached on the ends, so more mats can be added to create a longer mat.
Paneled mats are also often referred to as panel mats or simply folding mats. Whether the mat you are considering is a folding mat or tumbling mat, it offers the same benefits and is usually offered in the same lengths and thicknesses.
The Tumbl Trak Folding Gymnastics Mat is our most favorite folding mat. It has just enough padding for tumbling, no slip, easily folds up and connects together if you have multiple units, it’s just perfect.
To allow your gymnast to perform a series of elements together, EXTRA LENGTH mats might be a better option. Make sure you have a proper room for the size. Check out this one for a 10 or 12 feet long mat: Z-Athletic Gymnastics & Exercise Folding Mat, you can pick the size.
A cartwheel beam mat is a great home mat option for a beginner or young gymnast. The mat is created with proper hand and feet placement that guides gymnasts in the proper way to do a cartwheel. Even after the gymnast has perfected the cartwheel, the mat can be used to practice handstands and handstand rolls.
Most cartwheel beam mats have a beam option as well. To use the beam option simply flip the mat over and you will find a practice beam. With this matted practice beam, a gymnast can practice beam balance skills and other skills that are normally performed on the beam.
The Z-Athletic Cartwheel Mat is best for beginner gymnasts. It has two sides guides for practice, hands and feet on one side and beam-line on the other side.It has a variety of colors to choose from.
If you or your gymnasts don’t think they will need the hands and feet guide, then you might also want to consider We Sell Mats 2′ x 6′ Folding Cartwheel Tumbling Exercise Mat. The best thing about this mat is that it folds in half, so you will save more space for storage. Also, the mat comes with velcro fasteners that will allow you to connect multiple mats for longer runs.
A carpeted or flexi-roll mat is made to look and feel like a competition floor. Of course, it doesn’t offer exactly the same feel because it isn’t created with springs, but it is the best option for those that want to get comfortable with the feel of a competition floor at home. The best thing about a carpeted mat is that it can be rolled up and stored with ease.
Check-out flexi-roll mats on Amazon here.
An incline mat is perfect for young gymnasts that are learning how to do rolls backwards or forwards. This type of mat can also be used for log rolls too. The great thing about an incline mat is it helps a gymnast create body awareness and lessens stress on the body while learning.
It’s not recommended for advanced gymnasts to use an incline mat for harder skills because of the risk of injury. If a gymnast is looking for a gymnastics mat for home use designed for more difficult skills, it’s better to purchase a larger incline mat.
In terms of incline mats for home practice, our top choice is this Incline Mats by We Sell Mats. They come choices of color and sizes, so it would be easy to find a perfect match for what your gymnast wants and needs.
Gymnastics Mats are Investments that Make Your Home Safer and They are Easy to Care for
A good gymnastics mat is going to cost a small investment but the benefits will quickly outweigh the costs. Even with hard daily wear, a good quality mat can be expected to last a very long time.
One of the best things about this type of mat is that it is easy to care for as well. To clean a mat, you simply need to use a wet cloth and water, then allow it to dry. If you want to sanitize the mat, you can use a soft cloth and your favorite sanitizer to keep the mat germ free.
Encourage Gymnastics Practice in Your Home with a Quality Mat
One of the best ways to encourage your gymnast to practice at home is to gift him or her with a quality mat. Take the time to get exactly what you need and you’ll never be disappointed with your purchase.
Best Gymnastics Mats for Home Use Summary
So to sum it up, below are best gymnastics mats we have mentioned above if you just want a more straightforward list:
Tumbl Trak: Gymnastics Folding Tumbling Folding Mat
Our most favourite folding mat. Not only good for tumbling, it’s just a great all around gymnastics mat for home. High quality and very durable too. They last years even with heavy use. Get them from Amazon here.
Z-Athletic: Folding Panel Mats for Gymnastics, Martial Arts, and Tumbling
Similar feature to the Tumbl Trak Folding Mat, but they have longer mats. You can get a 10 or 12 feet long folding mat from Z-Athletic. Many gyms use these, but also great for home if you have the space for it. Get them from Amazon here.
Z-Athletic: Cartwheel Mat
The Z-Athletic Cartwheel Mat is best for beginners. The other side of the mat has a beam line to practice beam skills.
We Sell Mats: 2′ x 6′ Folding Cartwheel Tumbling Exercise Mat
Only has one side, but it folds in half for smaller storage.. The mat comes with velcro fasteners to attach multiple mats for longer runs. Check on Amazon here.
We Sell Mats: Gymnastics Folding and Non-Folding Incline Cheese Wedge Skill Shape Tumbling Mat
Perfect for young gymnasts to practice rolls backwards or forwards. Get them here.
Other Uses of Gymnastics Mats
Contrary to the name, gymnastics mats are not just for gymnasts. In fact, this type of mat can come in handy for many sports and activities. For instance, wrestlers, dancers, and cheerleaders can make use of a gymnastic mat in their home.
The most popular type of mat for a wrestler, dancer, cheerleader, and gymnast to use in the same home would be the folding or paneled mat. Since paneled and folded gymnastics mats can be fastened together to make a larger surface, they are perfect for use for many different activities
We hope you find this guide helpful!