If you have a little gymnast in your life, then you know that practice never stops… not even for a global pandemic.
That’s why it’s important to keep those little flippers on as much of a routine as possible so that they can practice different things.
More importantly, you want something that will keep them occupied and prevent them from getting stir crazy.
Purchasing an at-home gymnastics mat is a tremendous solution for your issue. It can give them reason enough to keep practicing their routine.
Here are several things to look for in a gymnastic mat for those of you in the market for one.
Is It Thick Enough?
If you’ve already started your search for a gymnastic mat, then you may have come across some at an exceptionally low price.
You might have thought to yourself “that seems too good to be true”. Well, you were right, it is. The reason they can afford to sell you a mat for such a low price is that it doesn’t actually do its job.
Gym mats have essentially one function: to provide as much cushion as possible while still having a stable structure to it.
The mats that sell for a low price don’t have enough cushion to protect your child. If they fall and hit their head, it could lead to a serious concussion.
Take a hard look at the thickness of the mat that you purchase. Ideally, you want it no thinner than 1 3/8 inch.
What Size Is It?
Size plays a heavy factor in the gymnastics mat that you should purchase. If you buy one that’s too small, then you may as well not purchase one at all.
However, if you purchase one that’s too big then it will be hard to use it inside the house. There’s a balance there, and it’s up to you to find it.
Consider this, most tumbling mats that you’ll find inside a gymnasium are 39 feet long and 7 feet wide. Granted, those mats are for tricks that you probably don’t want your kids to perform inside the house.
Also, depending on your child’s age and experience level, they may not be able to perform many space-occupying tricks as is.
If you’re looking for the right sized mat with the proper performance level, then be sure to check out this link. Here you’ll find the best air tracks compared in order to reach an informed decision.
Where Will You Place It?
Perhaps the most valuable question of all is determining where you will
- Place the mat in order for your child to use it and
- Keep it in storage while it’s not being used.
Sometimes the answer to those questions is one and the same if you have space in your house to do so.
Others of you don’t have much storage space, to begin with, so you have to be very considerate of the storage capabilities.
For those of you that live in an apartment, condo, or town-home, make sure you purchase a mat that can fold in fourths or fifths. It will help you condense space while the mats not in use.
Many people make the mistake of thinking “I’ll just leave it down on the floor the whole time”.
But if you do so in an area of your house with high traffic (such as your living room) then it will cause the mat to go through unnecessary wear and tear.
Make sure to factor in both folding capabilities and usage space with the mat that you end up purchasing.
What Material Should You Purchase?
As you shop around for gymnastics mats, there are two main materials that you’ll find mats are covered with.
Mostly all of them (or at least the ones you should buy) are made of foam and covered in either PVC or leather to provide a grippy surface for the gymnast.
Generally speaking, either of those materials is a good option for an at-home mat. You may find the mats with leather to be a bit more expensive due to leather being a more costly material.
However, if you find a mat that has either of those surfaces and fits your budget, then don’t hesitate to purchase it! Gym mats are in high demand right now. If you wait to long to purchase a mat you’re looking at, it might be sold out the next day.
What Will the Mat Be Used for?
Not all gymnastics mats are created equal. There are different mats that serve different purposes.
For example, an incline mat would be ideal for younger gymnasts that are just starting out. It helps them get momentum to learn forward and backward rolls to get their technique down and build strength.
Meanwhile, a Flexi-roll mat is essentially used to bring as close to the feel of an actual competitive gymnastics mat as possible.
For this reason, it’s important to consider what your little one should be practicing and which mat fits that need for you and your little one.
Find the Perfect Gymnastic Mat for Your Needs!
Now that you’ve seen the five biggest factors in finding a perfect gymnastic mat, it’s time for you to begin your search.
Start by taking a pen and paper to write down a few options that fit your mat needs online and filter them down by price, thickness, material, etc.
Be sure to browse our website for more articles on shopping, as well as many other helpful topics.