Making Good Use of a Tumbling Mat

A number of sports, training, and other activities call for soft, impact-absorbing surfaces for both the safety and the convenience of whoever is performing. These crash mats or tumbling mats are quite common today, and they can be used for any activity that involves tumbling, landing from a height, attacking an opponent, or anything similar. Tumbling mats, as the name suggests, are a great choice for a gymnast who is tumbling along them, and many police academies, martial arts schools, and military training zones make use of martial arts mats. In fact, some karate schools may use interlocking foam mats with wood floor patterns on top to maintain an authentic air about them. These mats are simple to make, use, and store on the premises, but that doesn’t make them any less useful or important. What is there to know about these tumbling mats and martial arts floor mats?

Gymnastics and Martial Arts

These mats are laid down on the floor for any session of gymnastics or martial arts, and for good reason. During these activities, people may often fall onto or tumble onto the floor, either by accident or on purpose, and a hard concrete or wood floor may really hurt to land on. Even a tough military cadet or police academy trainee might suffer bruises or even bone fractures without the use of tumbling mats or floor mats, and any drill instructor would be unhappy to have injured trainees on their hands. No matter how tough, a person should have shock-absorbent surfaces on hand, and athletes, or soldiers or police officers in training, will all use them. A gymnast, for example, will use these mats both for practice sessions and during an actual event, and for training and events alike, someone will lay out those mats as needed. Gymnasts are known for landing from considerable heights, tumbling around, and more. They might get hurt doing this unless they’re landing on a soft surface.

For martial arts training, such as a kickboxing class or a military training zone or a police academy, many people are practicing unarmed combat. This often means grappling with an opponent and throwing them down, forcing them down or tackling them, or sweeping their legs out from under them. Shock absorbent mats are tough enough to endure even large people grappling with each other, but their foam bodies allow users to land without suffering any bone fractures or bruises.

The Mats

These mats are a simple concept: tough foam padding encased in vinyl covers, and their use and treatment is basic enough. Larger mats may have creases so that they’re easy to fold up and store in a closet or a similar space for convenience. Smaller ones may not need creases at all. And interlocking foam pads may be stored in pieces but assembled like a simple jigsaw puzzle when used, such as in a karate class. These mats don’t have any moving parts, and often only need to be stored in a dry, cool place with other gym or training equipment.

It should be noted that sharp objects, hard-soled shoes, and food and drinks should be kept away from these mats. Sharp objects or hard-soled shoes may easily rip their covers and expose the inner stuffing, and further use of the mat may tear them open even wider. Torn mats should be sewn closed or have a new cover fitted on them before further use. Meanwhile, food and drinks should be kept away since they might stain the mat, or at least make them dangerously slippery to anyone who steps on them. Often, people training on these mats are barefoot, since shoes are too hard on them and socks make them too slippery. Some people also try to use these mats as a pad on which they park a car, usually to contain any oil or other liquid drips from the vehicle. This is a bad idea, though, since these mats are not typically designed to endure that much weight. Only people are supposed to be on these mats.

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