Home training without a mat, just like a student without one, is like a soldier without a rifle. After all, it is impossible to perform exercises that require us to assume a stable position on a hard floor mats or a slippery carpet. Many of them require a soft, resilient foundation. The exercise mat increases the comfort of training, increases its effects and reduces the risk of injury. We all know that with it, exercising at home becomes not only easier but also more enjoyable. However, when it comes to choosing a mat, we cannot decide on the only one due to the multitude of models. Today we will dispel all doubts!
Use of exercise mats
The mat is a must-have piece of equipment for every yoga practitioner, regardless of the level of advancement. She provides the required stability and anti-slip, which results in easier positioning while performing asanas. Yoga mats are relatively thin, and their task is stabilising the figure on the ground. The perfect choice will be MANDALA, SAVASANA, DREAM, LILY and HAMSA.
FITNESS AND STRENGTH EXERCISES
Mats for fitness and strength exercises should be very flexible, non-slip, durable, resistant to abrasion and, at the same time, easy to clean. Insulation from the hard ground is a must during training. Such a mat is often a barrier that protects the floor from heavy equipment used during training with weights, e.g. barbells, dumbbells or kettlebells. That’s what DUO, FLEXMAT and SOFTMAT are all about.
MASSAGE AND ACUPRESSURE
A massage or acupuncture mat is the best way to eliminate hip, back and head pain, stimulate blood circulation, relieve fatigue and relax—the irregular surface forces muscle activity, engaging the body for proper coordination. Sensory mats are perfect for balance exercises and training to reduce the risk of injury and loads. ROSE and ACU will be the best choice.
Thickness, type of material, structure, adhesion, dimensions, and method of cleaning or folding are many factors that should be considered when choosing the only dream exercise mat. After all, we want it to fulfil its function and serve us for many years. Once we decide for what purpose we will use the mat, we should consider specific parameters affecting our final choice. If you focus on yoga or fitness exercises, bet on thin mats that help adapt and maintain the figure in the correct position without sliding on the surface. However, thicker models will perform better when training with weights and intensive effort, providing excellent cushioning and protecting the floor against potential damage from heavy items, such as weights, dumbbells, barbells or kettlebells.
Another issue is the material on which anti-slip properties, resistance to damage, adhesion and ease of keeping clean depend. There are at least several types of mats that differ in purpose, application and parameters.
Durable material and solid finish make the neoprene mat resistant to stress and abrasion. It retains its shape and appearance for a long time. The material does not absorb moisture, which makes it easy to maintain and can be used for years.
NBR foam is famous for its flexibility and cushioning. This is why mats made of this material perfectly adapt to the exercising person, and immediately after training, they return to the proper structure. They are also moisture-resistant, which makes it easy to keep them clean.
The rubber mat is resistant to moisture and mechanical damage and is extremely easy to clean. The coating covered with rubber prevents the hands and feet from slipping, even during the most demanding workouts. It can also be used outdoors because the coating perfectly insulates from the wet surface. Rubber mats are also an excellent barrier protecting the floor against heavy equipment used during training, e.g. dumbbells and barbells.
Cork mats provide excellent adhesion, do not absorb sweat and moisture, do not cause allergies and have antibacterial properties. This makes them very easy to clean. Natural cork prevents slipping on the surface, gives the necessary cushioning during exercise and guarantees safety. What’s more, natural cork mats are recyclable!
Now that you know the capabilities of all mats, there is only one question: which mat do you choose? Our cheat sheet will make the answer even easier.