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Non-slip pebbled surface for extra security. Folds into seven 12-inch sections. Only weighs 7 pounds. Protects equipment from dust and carpet fibers. Easy to clean and store.
Not recommended for heavy equipment on carpeting. Legs can penetrate thin material.
Uses high-density foam for maximum floor protection. The textured pattern holds equipment in place. Generous dimensions for different types of equipment. Does not bleed into the carpeting.
Noticeable chemical odor. Does not lie flat; tends to curl or bunch.
Dampens vibrations and equipment noise very well. Protects both flooring and equipment. Works as a personal exercise mat. Heavy-duty vinyl construction. Minimal chemical odor.
Overall durability is a common complaint. Too soft to protect flooring from heavier equipment.
Generous dimensions for all types of equipment. The smooth surface is easy to clean. Heavy-duty PVC construction. Extremely lightweight, weighing less than 4 pounds.
Dimensions may not be accurate. Strong chemical odor. Reports of damage from heavier equipment.
Heavy-duty PVC construction. Will not bleed on carpeting. Noticeable vibration and noise reduction. Indentations recover quickly between uses. Non-slip surface. Good for personal exercise and yoga as well.
Requires a degassing period. Better for lighter workout routines, not heavy equipment.
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Treadmills designed for in-home use often duplicate the performance and features of professional-grade gym models. However, treadmills are heavy by nature, and they can cause damage to flooring as well as generate a significant amount of noise during use. A popular solution to this problem is a treadmill mat.
A treadmill mat is a foam, plastic, and/or rubber piece that fits between the treadmill and the floor. The mat actually performs two separate duties: it protects the floor from friction and weight damage, and it protects the treadmill from outside contamination. A quality treadmill mat also reduces vibration and noise generated by the treadmill’s moving parts and the user’s feet. The rubberized surface of the mat also helps hold the treadmill in place.
Some treadmill owners may believe that a treadmill placed on padded carpeting does not need an additional treadmill mat, but, in reality, carpeting is not designed to withstand all the effects of a treadmill in action, and the loose fibers and debris in the carpeting can damage the treadmill’s motor and belt drive.
If you would like more in-depth information on treadmill mats, read on and it should address many of your questions. When you’re ready to buy, consider one of our top picks.
Treadmills marketed for in-home use can vary in size, but most fall into the compact-to-midsize category. The standard dimensions of a home treadmill mat should be at least 6.5 feet by three feet (78 by 36 inches), but some mats can be 84 inches or greater in length and 48 inches or more in width. The thickness can also vary from one-fourth to three-eighths of an inch. The most important factor is a six-inch minimal extension around all sides of the equipment. It pays to measure the treadmill or other exercise equipment before purchasing a treadmill mat.
Treadmill mats must be able to reduce vibrations, absorb shock, and provide a nonslip surface between the floor and the machine. Most manufacturers use one or more of the following materials:
Treadmill mats must be able to withstand a significant amount of stress from heavy pieces of exercise equipment. It is not unusual for the mats to start shedding material over time, especially less expensive models made from EVA foam or rubber composite. If durability is an important consideration, we recommend investing in a solid rubber mat or one with a rubberized outer shell and a PVC interior layer.
Some users may choose to leave the treadmill mat in place at all times, while others choose to store the mat between uses. Most treadmill mats arrive in a compact roll, and some can be difficult to flatten out during use. Others are designed to be folded in half between uses, but not rolled. If a treadmill mat serves double duty as an aerobics or yoga mat, the outer surface should be easy to clean and dry between uses. We recommend a PVC equipment mat for multiple uses.
The majority of treadmill mats are black, but different color schemes are available. Mats constructed from rubber composites tend to have flecks of different colors, while some PVC-based mats feature a variety of solid colors.
When creating a home gym with multiple pieces of equipment, many people invest in foam mats with interlocking edges. One interlocking piece may have the proper dimensions for a treadmill, but connecting several of these mats can create an entire play area for children or a home gym for adults.
Although a treadmill mat’s dimensions are designed specifically for in-home treadmills, it can serve a number of other purposes. Some homeowners may want to protect hardwood flooring by installing equipment mats under heavy furniture. A treadmill mat can also work like a sleeping bag pad or a temporary mattress topper. It could also be used as an anti-fatigue mat behind a wet bar or in the kitchen.
The most basic treadmill mats for under $20 are not actually full-size mats at all. Instead, they are small squares constructed from the same PVC, EVA foam, or rubber as their larger counterparts. They are designed to fit under the contact points of the treadmill to reduce vibration and noise but do not protect the entire machine from outside debris. A few full-size PVC or EVA mats can also be found at this price point, but durability may be an issue.
Between $20 and $50 is where most first-time treadmill owners will find suitable mats for home exercise equipment. Most options in this price range will meet or exceed the minimum size recommendation of 6.5 x 3 feet. Some mats will feature solid rubber construction, while others are composites of rubber sandwiched around a PVC or EVA foam core.
For over $50, you’ll find high-end treadmill mats constructed from solid rubber or a high-tech composite material. Some brands at this price point are marketed toward professional gyms, not average consumers. They could be as thick as two inches, while the standard in-home mat thickness is closer to one-fourth to three-eighths of an inch. Some manufacturers also offer multipacks of equipment mats at this price point.
A. A treadmill mat provides more than cushioning for the equipment. Even if you place the treadmill on thick carpeting, the vibrations and constant pounding can still cause damage to the carpet fibers and flooring. A treadmill mat also prevents dust, debris, and loose carpet fibers from entering sensitive parts of the treadmill.
A. In that kind of close-quarters situation, we’d recommend investing in the thickest treadmill mat you can find and considering placement very carefully. Other occupants in your apartment and your downstairs may be aware of the treadmill when it is in use, but the overall noise and vibrations should be dampened.
A. Manual treadmills and lightweight motorized models generally require a mat that is one-fourth of an inch in thickness. The main consideration is the length and width of the machine because the mat should extend at least six inches from all sides.
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