Thursday, November 16, 2017

Top 3 Customer Uses of Plyometric Rubber Rolls

Plyometric Rubber Flooring: From Fitness to Dance

By Julia Nass

Plyometric Rubber Rolls provide a shock-absorbent and durable foundation for athletes to work out on. Discover the ins and outs of the product and the top three ways customers are using it.

1. Home Gyms

Greatmats Plyometric Rubber Rolls Home Gym Floor
Customers find that plyometric rubber gym flooring rolls do wonders for home gyms. Not only do the rubber gym flooring rolls protect bodies from injury, they also protect a home's structure. Three-eighths inches of high quality rubber material will protect wood, concrete and other materials from permanent damage. With plyometric gym flooring rolls, there's no need to worry about scratches, scuffs, and dings on subflooring that would be extremely costly to replace. Plus, these gym flooring rolls can be easily picked up and put away, so it's possible to turn any room into a temporary gym.

Take it from Brian in California, who utilizes 3/8 inch Plyometrics Mats in his home:

''I use the mat for Insanity and other cardio/plyometric/PAP workouts. At workout time, it's unrolled onto the living room floor. The floor is a wood laminate, and the mat does not slide at all regardless of lateral jumping. It provides great traction, even with substantial sweat on the surface. It's somewhat heavy, but that keeps it in place during use and is a function of its excellent durability. Very happy with this mat. When done working out, I just let it air dry, roll it up, and it's out of the way.''

2. Dance Subfloor

Greatmats Plyometric Rubber Rolls Dance Subfloor
Another popular purpose for rubber gym flooring rolls is as a dance subfloor. Plyometric rubber flooring can be installed underneath Marley and other vinyl flooring to provide cushion and support for dancers. Plyometric rubber flooring contributes to the safety of any athletic space such as a dance floor. The rubber gym flooring rolls yields just the right amount of cushion to protect joints and limbs from impact injuries and strains. At the same time, these rubber gym flooring rolls have plenty of traction to prevent falls.

Victoria from Massachusetts uses 3/8 inch Plyo Mats in her dance studio, and wrote, ''I am very happy with this product. I used it as a sub-floor for a ballet studio, and it feels great! It gives some cushion for jumps, yet it is firm enough for pointe work.''

3. Commercial Fitness Facilities

Greatmats Plyometric Rubber Flooring Rolls Commercial Fitness Center
Plyometric rubber rolls are easily installed in commercial fitness facilities. Plyometric rubber flooring comes in customizable lengths, starting at 30 feet long and can be cut down to fit any nooks and crannies. It doesn't take much to lay rolls flat and adhere to the subfloor with a double-sided tape. Once installed, plyometric rubber flooring won't slip or slide around, even under repeated intense movements or heavy impacts. Plus, buyers save money because they are able to install mats themselves and do not need to pay anyone to do it for them.

Tina, who runs a commercial fitness facility, reviewed Plyometric Mats after installing them in her new fitness center.
''The mats I purchased from Greatmats for my new facility are wonderful. They are much more comfortable than the mats I previously had and because they are in a roll, they don't walk everywhere.''

Other Reasons to Love Rubber Plyo Mats

Quality and Durability

Greatmats Plyometric Rubber Flooring Home Fitness
Greamats' plyometric rubber flooring is made in the USA with high-quality and long-lasting material. Unlike lesser-made rubber flooring products, Greatmats' rubber will not flake or disintegrate on its own. These plyometrics mats are more durable than any foam product on the market and will stay in great shape for much longer. To back it up, plyo gym flooring rolls come with a five year limited manufacturer warranty.

Economical Choice

Despite the high-quality, these floors are one of the most economical gym flooring options out there. Rubber flooring rolls often cost less than other tiles and mat products. Plus, the initial investment should be the only one, as floors are made to last for years and years.

Easy Maintenance

Greatmats Plyometric Rubber Flooring Rolls in Garage Gym
Maintaining rubber gym flooring rolls is simple. For basic cleaning, all a plyo mat needs is a daily vaccuum. For deeper cleaning, floors can be damp mopped with warm water and pH-neutral cleaners, as solvents and oil-based cleaners can erode the rubber.

Amazing Customer Support

Customers are often grateful to communicate with a company that not only listens to customers but truly cares. Greatmats is able to meet so many different needs with their products because of the dedication of their customer service team. The team is ready to respond to questions and concerns, whether they are about products, shipping or anything in between. Greatmats takes flooring seriously and customers can rest easy knowing the future of their floor is in the best possible hands.

For more on this topic please review our Rubber Flooring Rolls product page.

Monday, November 13, 2017

The Top 5 Customer Uses of Rubber Flooring Rolls 1/4 inch 4x10 Ft

From Gyms to Dog Houses to Vehicles, rubber flooring is versatile

By Julia Nass

Greatmats Rubber Flooring Rolls Weight Room Floor
Greatmats believes that no matter how unique your flooring need is, there is always a floor out there to meet it. At the same time, even though there are unique problems and people, there doesn't always need to be a unique solution. Sometimes, a single flooring product can provide for a surprising number of different flooring desires. Take Greatmats' Rubber Flooring Rolls 1/4 Inch by 4x10 feet. These durable and economical rolls have acted as rubber exercise mats, rubber home gym mats, dog house flooring and more.

What makes these rubber exercise mats so versatile? For one, they stand up to serious wear and tear, so they are great for daily exercise or for pet usage. Because Rubber Flooring Rolls come in a 4x10 foot size, they are perfect for smaller spaces and can be easily cut down to fit into any room or vehicle. Plus these rubber home gym mats come at a price and quality that cannot be beat. All of these awesome features make Rubber Flooring Rolls 1/4 Inch a five-star product.

Take it from the people who use Rubber Flooring Rolls in their home gyms or as dog house flooring. Below are five different Greatmats customer reviews to highlight the top ways Rubber Flooring Rolls are used and why they work for a number of purposes.

1. Rubber Exercise Mats

Greatmats Rubber Flooring Rolls 1/4 Inch Home Gym floor
''Customer service was extremely helpful (unlike other companies I called) and helped me pick out the right mats I was looking for. I installed them on my own and had to cut a portion to fit my room. They have some weight to them and were difficult to cut in a perfectly straight line (e.g. to the right of my punching bag you can see in the photo were it doesn't meet perfectly), but it was worth my sore arms the next day. They look great with no curling and the light rubber smell is gone within a couple days with leaving the window open. I use my personal gym everyday for jump rope, plyometrics, boxing and weights, and the mats still look brand new and easy to clean. Highly recommend.''
- Mica R, Jacksonville, FL

2. Rubber Home Gym Mats

Greatmats Rubber Flooring Rolls 1/4 Inch Home exercise floor
''Exactly what I expected! Put it directly on basement floor to create my workout area. Didn't need to put anything underneath (double sided tape) because the mats didn't slide. I totally would recommend getting the type with specs in it because dusty foot prints will show up if you bought solid black. The free shipping is what sold me. When I'm ready to make my workout room bigger I'll be buying my mats from!''
- Julie, Franklin, MA

3. Dog House Flooring

''Cut mine to fit inside two metal dog houses for flooring. So far the dogs have not chewed either one. Exactly what I needed for this purpose! Two thumbs-up!''
- James, Diamondville, WY

4. Rubber Vehicle Floor Liner

''Great mat. Used it to line the cargo area for my 240sx hatchback... Heavy enough not to slide around, but still thin enough to cut.''
- Raymond, Savannah, GA

5. Weight Room Flooring

''I installed several rolls of this mat in a weight room at my house. Even though I just got the 1/4-inch thick mat - it is very dense and substantial. It cushions iron dumbells and plates extremely well. It also looks fantastic and was way easy to install. Fantastic product!''
- L.C., Emmett, ID

More About Rubber Flooring Rolls 1/4 Inch

Greatmats Rubber Flooring Rolls 1/4 Inch Home Gym floor
Most people can easily install 4x10 rubber flooring rolls without an extra hand. Rolls just need to be laid out flat onto the floor. For smaller spaces, the rubber will provide enough traction to the ground that double-sided tape is not needed between the roll and the floor. Although there is a rubber smell for the first couple days, it should quickly dissipate, especially with some air flow and cleaning. These rolls are available with a 10% color speckle or in black. Because of its popularity, the roll is in stock and ships via ground delivery within 3-6 business days. Rolls can be easily cleaned with a pH neutral cleaner and a damp mop. It's important to note that these rubber floors are dense and do not provide an anti-fatigue cushion. If you are looking for cushioned exercise mats, check out one of Greatmats foam home gym mats or PVC floor tiles instead.''

Score a Win With Your Floor

Greatmats Rubber Flooring Rolls 1/4 Inch Pet Flooring
Greatmats takes great pride each time a customer comes away completely satisfied with their new flooring solution. For the company, the definition of winning is when the customer feels like they scored a win. If you feel like taking a W on your flooring problem, reach out to Whether it's dog house flooring, rubber home gym mats, rubber exercise mats, or anything else you're searching for, their friendly and effective customer service team is there to help you champion your flooring needs.

For more on this topic please review our Rubber Flooring Rolls product page.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Are Gym Floor Protection Covers Worth The Cost?

How much can gym floor covers really save you?

By Kim Butler

When you think of a high school basketball game, I am sure images of a highly polished maple floor come to mind, as well as that satisfying smack of the ball as it is dribbled down the court. But those shiny wood floors come at price - easily starting in the tens of thousands for a standard gym, with annual maintenance costs adding to the overall price tag. With a cost like this, most schools and institutions want a way protect their investment. Although synthetic gym floors have their place, if it were left up to athletic departments, coaches and players, most gymnasium floors would be wood. The aesthetics and performance of wood surfaces are what athletes competing at high levels expect. Perhaps your local school isn't developing the next LeBron James or Kevin Durant, but fans of wood floors believe that because of the foundation that lies beneath a hardwood floor, which absorb shock, athletes are less likely to sustain injuries.

Greatmats Vinyl Gym Floor Protection Rolls gymnasium
The downside of wood floors is their expense, although they do have a longer lifespan than synthetic floors. Installing a wood floor is more expensive than synthetic alternatives, and depending on the amount of sanding and refinishing required, can deplete an institution's maintenance budget. Colleges and high schools, which have a wider range of needs for athletic space, often have both wood and synthetic floors, sometimes a wood floor for varsity competition gym, and a second gym with a synthetic floor for practices and other uses. In cities and small towns, schools are used around the clock, by the school and the community. The Maple Floors Manufacturers Association estimates a $2,088 annual daily maintenance cost for 10,000 square feet maple sports flooring (174 hours at $12 an hour). Plus another $2,800 for the annual cost of screening and re-coating maple sports flooring. And finally, $845 annual cost of refinishing maple sports flooring.

The road to the state tournament or the Final Four may be paved in maple, but that maple needs to be protected. That's where gym floor covers come in. Protective gym floor covers are available in two styles: roll out sheet vinyl and large carpet tiles. Both floor covering options are easy to use and install. Either protective flooring surface will do a great job of safeguarding your hardwood gym floor. Vinyl covers are typically much faster to install while carpet tiles will offer more comfort for your gymnasium event.

Vinyl Gym Floor Protection Rolls

Greatmats Gym Floor Cover Vinyl Roll at graduation ceremony
Vinyl floor covers come in long rolls, which are typically stored on large racks, and are rolled out to cover the floor for activities other than sporting events like dances, registrations, banquets, plays and commencements. A gym floor gets heavy foot traffic, stains, scuffs, impact from furniture and more., a specialty flooring retailer, carries several types of vinyl floor covering materials, and the racks needed to store the materiel. Their vinyl mesh fabric is fire retardant, ADA and OSHA compliant, and waterproof, rot and mildew resistant. Plus the material is anti-fungal and antibacterial.

The ultra durable three ply PVC vinyl sheeting is available in multiple thickness, which is measured by the weight of the vinyl per square yard. Thicknesses range from 18 ounces to 32 ounces per square yard. The number of uses per year equates to the recommended weight that you choose. For use six times a year or less, choose the 18 oz. If you plan to cover the floor six to 12 times a year, go for the 22 oz. weight. Twenty-seven oz is preferred for usage of more than once a month. For more frequent events, opt for the heaviest 32 oz. weight.

Greatmats Gym Floor Vinyl Covers Gymnasium Floor Protection
Greatmats has nine colors available, plus three which have tan on the reverse side. You might even get your school's colors. A raised pattern is available on some weights to enhance the non-slip factor.

Two people can easily deploy a vinyl floor cover system over a standard basketball court in less than 30 minutes.

The material is easy handling, and the seams are strong and lay smooth and flat. Seams are typically taped down, and the product is stored rolled up on racks. The product comes in 10-foot widths, and it is recommended to add six to 12 inches for overlapping each section. The rolls will be custom cut for your facility. To clean, sweep with a broom before storing.

Gym Floor Protection Carpet Tiles

Greatmats Gym Floor Protection Carpet Tiles gymnasium cover
Another option are durable and attractive carpet tiles. Greatmats stocks a 6mm thick carpet tile in a 3.28 by 6.56 foot size, which weighs less than 14 pounds a piece. This product is used by schools and universities to cover gym floors, and as protective carpet flooring for convention halls and sports/recreational facilities.

Carpet tiles lie flat on top of the wood gym flooring and there are no unsightly wrinkles or ripples to cause potential tripping hazards. Many protective carpet tiles users appreciate the added acoustic buffering that the carpet tiles provide.

They are easy to install and remove by one person even for large areas and don't require tape or lots of special accessories. Carpet tiles used as protective gym flooring covers provide a more finished look and create a better image and appearance in your facility.

Greatmats customers report compliments when they use the protective carpet tiles. Tiles are available in gray and blue and can be stored on rolling carts for easy mobility and storage of the tiles - up to 75 carpet tiles per cart. Greatmats also offers the carts for these tiles.

So whether you choose carpet tiles or vinyl rolls, you and your facility will save time and money when your gym floors are protected. You will gain usable space, without damaging the quality flooring your athletes, coaches and fans expect.
For more on this topic please review our Gym Floor Covers product page.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Benefits of Anti-Fatigue Mats for Your Employees

Features and Benefits of Anti-Fatigue Mats

By Kim Butler

Whether you are working at your own kitchen counter or work bench, or on your feet all day at a Customer Service counter or assembly line, you could make your hobby or job much more enjoyable and productive with an anti-fatigue mat.

The problem

Greatmats BubbleFlex Anti Fatigue Mats
Standing still for long periods on a hard surface, like a tile or concrete floor, is not an activity that our bodies are designed for. Our leg muscles tighten and constrict. Our hearts have to work harder to pump blood around and through these constricted muscles. And this extra work by our heart actually makes our whole body tired. And, don't forget about the foot, leg, and back pain that can also result from standing for hours on end.

Unfortunately, that's not all - standing for long periods can cause a flattening of the foot, leading to arch and heel pain, and stagnating or pooling blood can cause varicose veins. Studies have indicated that people are more likely to have an accident when they are tired, fatigued or in pain - so anti fatigue mats can have a secondary safety effect as well.

Workers who are in pain are also less productive. A study in the Journal of American Medicine estimated that an average of 3.5 hours a week are lost due to reduced worker performance - that adds up to almost 23 days a year! This does not include days that result in absenteeism, nor does this take into account medical expenses or Worker's Compensation claims from muscular skeletal damage. Simply put, a tired worker or hobbyist is less productive, less happy and may have to see a doctor more often.

The solution

Greatmats Rubber Anti Fatigue Mats
The solution lies in a simple anti fatigue mat. The softer surface of an anti-fatigue mat encourages subtle movement of the leg and foot muscles. As you shift around on the mat, this movement allows blood, and oxygen to flow more easily, and the heart does not have to pump as hard.

In addition to an antifatigue mat, make sure you take breaks during the day. Walking to the bathroom, speaking to a coworker face to face rather than sending an email can give your body the break it needs to keep you happy, productive and injury free.

Where to use anti-fatigue mats

Household locations that can benefit from anti-fatigue mats are home kitchens and work benches, craft areas and work shops and laundry rooms. Anywhere that you stand for long periods of time. If you work at home, and use a stand up desk, an anti-fatigue mat is recommended.

On the job, service desks, cashier and hostess stations, shipping and packing, wait stations, manufacturing, laboratories, assembly and picking stations, food service and parts counters are just some of the areas where employees would benefit from the use of anti-fatigue mats.

Keep anti-fatigue properties and intended use in mind

Greatmats Safety TruTread Anti Fatigue Wet Area Mats
Choosing an anti-fatigue mat is one area where the lowest cost option is often not the best. Anti-fatigue mats are available at big box retailers, but it is worth doing some research with an online flooring specialist. is one company that offers a range of choices for many budgets and purposes. Remember, cheaper mats tend to wear out more quickly, may offer only minimal anti-fatigue benefits, and may curl and bend to become a tripping hazard.

Mats vary in size from a 2 foot by 3 foot to runners, to mats that curve around a salon chair, to perforated mats for wet areas like food prep areas and manufacturing.

Mats can be made from a variety of materials like vinyl foam, rubber, and PVC and a combination of these materials.
Greatmats Diamond Foot Safety Border Anti Fatigue Mats
As far as cushioning, softer is not always better. A mat should have a degree of rebound, where the surface returns to its original form after your weight is moved. A too-soft mat is like standing on a mattress - it takes more work to remain upright, which can also lead to fatigue.

Look for beveled edges to prevent tripping and allow carts to move onto the mat. Some mats have brightly-colored borders to increase safety awareness. Anti-fatigue mats can include additional features like anti-slip surfaces. Bubbleflex, Performa, and Honeycomb are a few of the more popular options.

Greatmats Hog Heaven Anti Fatigue Welding Mat
Some mats even have anti-static electricity properties to prevent damage to people and equipment in manufacturing and industrial work. ESD Static Dissipative Mats and Apachestat are some examples of this type of mat. The closed-cell foam mat offers comfort and relief to aching legs as well as an anti-slip surface. Some mats can also withstand welding. Weldmaster is a popular brand of anti-fatigue mats used in areas used for welding. Hog Heaven Indoor Anti Fatigue mats are designed to withstand welding sparks and slag up to 1,800 degrees.

In industrial areas where fluids like oil and grease are present, a draining rubber mat is the safest option. Vinyl cannot stand up to oil and grease. Industrial machining areas, where lots of metal shavings fall to the floor, would benefit from perforated mats as they will make cleanup easier. The drainage holes allow liquid and waste to pass through. Also, a sturdy rubber mat won't get metal shavings imbedded in its surface as easily as a softer mat.

Chemical-resistant mats, such as Dekplate, are another option. Hospitals and laboratories require anti microbial properties found in mats like K-Marble.

When you have narrowed your choices down to a few mats, check the warranty. Mats with a longer warranty usually last longer, because the manufacturer has designed them for long life. Warranties can range from several years to lifetime!

Whichever mat you choose, know that you are making an investment in your comfort, productivity and overall health.
For more on this topic please review our Fatigue Mats product page.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Puzzle vs. Snap Together Interlocking Floor Tiles

Comparing the two most popular forms of interlocking tiles

By Kim Butler

Greatmats Interlocking Foam Tiles Blue
Anytime you start a home improvement project or upgrade a surface or fixture in your home, the array of choices can be daunting. Sometimes I have restricted my choices to what is available at one particular store just to keep myself sane. The same amount of choice applies to home flooring options. If you are considering a DIY floor tile, you may be ''puzzled'' as to whether you want an interlocking tile or a snap together tile. Both have their pros and cons.

As a general rule of thumb, interlocking tiles are lightweight, and the interlocks make it fast and easy to take up and take down the tiles if you need to move them. If you want something portable, interlocking tiles are a good bet. However, many interlocking tiles are made of foam, whether solid EVA foam, carpet-covered foam, or vinyl covered foam and these tiles won't stand up as well to heavy furniture, moving chairs, and lots of foot traffic from high heels, etc. Rubber interlocking tiles are available, which can support heavy weight machines, dropping weights, etc., but rubber is durable in part because it is heavy, which makes it less portable.

Puzzle-Style Interlocking Tiles

Greatmats Royal Interlocking Carpet Tile blueThe classic puzzle style interlocking tile is a foam tile. Specialty flooring retailer carries a range of colors and weights. Their most popular foam tile, the 5/8th inch Premium Foam Mat comes in 15 colors. Other budget options in black and thinner weights are also available. Other weights and textures of foam mats are also available, which are more suitable for martial arts, grappling, dog agility and aerobics.

Another option is a wood grain foam tile, available in dark wood, light wood or cork surface designs. These faux wood tiles are waterproof, yet will give your tradeshow or basement a warm, inviting look.

Greatmats HiddenLock Interlocking Plastic Tile
Carpet tiles are another choice, with all the benefits of foam tiles plus a finished, professional look to your basement or trade show. The tiles can be easily vacummed, and like all interlocking tiles, if one gets damaged, you can easily replace it. The same holds true if just a few tiles get dirty. Take them up and hose them down, dry and replace.

Some puzzle style plastic tiles include HiddenLock PVC Slate look tiles, which feature a slate-like texture in several earth tones. In this case the puzzle style interlock is hidden beneath the finished surface. For a more modern or industrial look, choose HiddenLock coin top tiles in gray or Diamond Plate floor tiles in 8 colors.

Snap Together Tiles

If you want something more durable, snap together tiles are a great option. While many tiles are designed so that the connectors will hold up from repeated installations, some tiles are best left in one spot once they are installed. Another benefit of many snap together tiles is that they often have space underneath for air and water to flow, making them great for basements or other wet or damp areas.

Greatmats Staylock Bump Top Tile Snap TogetherGreatmats also carries a wide variety of snap together tiles, which make an easy and satisfying DIY project. These tiles are also able to be cut with a sharp utility knife, and, as always, remember to measure twice and cut once. Many snap together tiles can handle heavy loads are are great for damp or wet areas. They are a wonderful option for dance floors, athletic courts, garages and industrial areas.

In areas with possible moisture, go with one of the StayLock tiles. Available in bump top, orange peel top and perforated surfaces, black colored versions of these long lasting tiles are made with 100% recycled material and they work great for home gyms, industrial areas and exercise studios. The tile is slightly raised off the floor to allow for water and air to flow under the tile. For wet areas, StayLock perforated tiles work best, which is great around pools and hot tubs. Like all StayLock tiles, these are durable and comfortable.

Greatmats Diamond Garage Floor Tile Snap Together
For garages, Greatmats recommends the Diamond or Coin Garage Floor tile which can withstand well over 10,000 pounds of weight. Available in 6 colors, you can create patterns and checkerboard designs, and your garage will be the envy of the neighborhood. The no-break polypropylene plastic tiles can be cut with a basic saw or table saw.

A good place to start your search for the perfect tile for your project is at They carry one of the widest selections of interlocking and snap together tiles, and their knowledgeable staff can assist you in choosing the flooring material that best meets your unique needs.

For more on this topic please review our Modular Flooring product page.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Permanent vs. Portable Dance Flooring

Pros and Cons of Both Portable Dance Floors and Permanent Ones

By Kim Butler

Greatmats Marley Dance Floor in Basement
Dance studio owners, community and event centers, schools, dancers and the parents of dancers who are looking for new dance flooring face an immediate choice - should you purchase permanent or portable dance flooring? The answer is not as obvious as it may seem.

In either case, you are probably looking for a mult-purpose floor, suitable for many kinds of dance whether ballet, tap, ballroom, jazz, flamenco, modern, character or clogging. Both portable and permanent floors can meet this need.

Let's start by looking at why you need dance flooring. Movement creates energy, energy which gets returned by the floor to the body.

Practicing or performing dance moves on improper flooring can cause shin splints, fatigue, strains, joint problems and possibly broken bones or fractures. Concrete is the worst offender. It is hard, unyielding and not energy absorbing.

Dance Subfloors

To soften the effects of concrete, you need to add a dance surface plus a layer of air or a material containing air, like foam. In other words, you can't just put a layer of hardwood flooring down and be done with it. Permanent dance surfaces are installed over a sprung floor or floating floor.

Underneath the dance surfaces are 1 to 2 layers of plywood, resting on neoprene pads and wood battens. Another option is foam rubber with a wood or other elastic layer on top. Any sort of temporary or portable dance needs to mimic the characteristics of a sprung floor. Believe it or not, there is so much energy generated by dancing that some ''green'' night clubs have installed dance floors containing transducers that act like shock absorbers and piezoelectric (electricity resulting from pressure) crystals which charge nearby batteries.

So now that you understand the need for a dance floor, start your search by asking some questions.

1. Do you own or rent the space?
2. Will you be using a dance floor for a long or short time?
3. What is the subfloor?
4. Will the flooring be used inside or outside?
5. What type of dance will be performed on this floor? A ballet floor needs to be very non-slip, yet tap, ballroom and theater dance prefer a less non-slip surface.
6. Will anything else be done on the floor? Will you placing tables and chairs or pieces of equipment on the floor?

Once you know the answers to question like these, you can narrow down your choices.

Portable Dance Floors

Portable dance floors come in easy to snap-together tiles. They are commonly used for events like parties, weddings or conferences where there is not permanent dance floor space available. Cruise ships, schools and community centers use them as a way to utilize limited space - to create a multipurpose space.

They can be designed for indoor or outdoor use. Floors are usually 1/2 to 1 inch thick and consist of 1x1 foot or 3x3 foot panels to create the desired size. Indoor floors might be constructed of wood, or honeycomb aluminum and laminate for both indoor and outdoor use.

Greatmats Home Dance Portable SubfloorSome floors are made of a polypropylene base with a commercial grade laminate top surface. The tiles function as both subfloor and danceable surface. The top surface of the tile is a durable commercial grade vinyl that resists scratches, and includes UV protection. They are designed for repeated use in banquet, event centers and hotels or community centers. You can even find or purchase a transport cart to make your kit complete.

Plastic tiles are another option, primarily for use as a subfloor or used in combination with foam or rubber as a substitute for a sprung floor.

Specialty flooring company offers a two-part dance subfloor system designed for a roll of marley flooring on top. The bottom layer is 1/2 inch soft EVA foam tiles, which provides the necessary air cushion. Next, plastic 5/8 inch thick polypropylene tiles also lock together. Finally, marley flooring is the standard for dance floors - both portable and permanent.

Sprung Floors

Greatmats Rosco Adagio Sprung Dance Subfloor DIY option
For a permanent option, you could use any of the above methods, or create a sprung floor using tiles like the Rosco Wavelock tile where you provide your own subfloor - or the 3x5 Sprung Dance Floor panels which comes with a subfloor already attached. With both options, you would purchase rolls of marley flooring to tape down or glue/heat weld on top. Bear in mind that the full panels weigh 44 pounds apiece, so while they can be moved, it is not a job you'll want to do often.

Greatmats Rosco Adagio Sprung Dance FloorThere are sprung floor systems made by dance floor leaders like Rosco that are designed to be covered with MDF boards and Rosco marley dance floor. These components were designed with input from professional dancers to achieve the right amount of resilience or spring.

The final option is to have a floor built. Since these types of sprung floors depend on a wood subfloor, they are not appropriate for outdoor use. You can have a contractor build a sprung floor, and some handy people have had success building their own floors, but it is easier to purchase a proven, dependable product, which has been professionally engineered.

Marley Surfaces

Greatmats Rosco Adagio Marley Dance Floor
Marley is required for ballet, jazz, and modern dance, but also works well with tap and other forms of dance. Permanent marley flooring comes in rolls that are taped down with vinyl floor tape, but portable marley rolls are available which weigh less, are also taped, and simply roll up when finished. Note that portable marley flooring is not recommended for daily tap dance use. For that, the stronger, permanent marley flooring is preferred.

Modular Dance Floors

Finally, modular dance floors feature a plastic base tray and commercial grade vinyl overlay. Their connector tabs are made for years of repeated reassembling. These high quality floors can provide an upscale wood or stone look.

Greatmats Portable Dance Floor Modular Parquet
One example of this product is the Greatmats Max Tile 1x1 foot tile. The tiles are available in a variety of wood grain colors like walnut, maple and cherry, as well as slate, stone and solid black and white. These tiles are made in the USA and can be installed over any hard surface including carpeting. Easy snap-on border ramps and corners give the floor added safety and a finished look.

While this floor is excellent ballroom, Irish, clogging, latin and flamenco, but ballet, jazz and modern dance should consider a marley surface with few, if any seams. Tiles are sold individually to customize to the size of your floor, or as a kit.

While there are a daunting number of options out there, fortunately there are also specialty flooring companies like whose professional customer service representatives can help you find the perfect flooring choice for your home, studio, touring company or event business.
For more on this topic please review our Dance Flooring product page.

Friday, October 20, 2017

Comparing Play Mats for Kids

This mother of two breathed easier when foam mats entered her home

By Kim Butler

Greatmats Foam Mats Premium at Daycare
When my first child was starting to crawl, I baby-proofed our house against every potential accident or injury. The coffee table edges were padded; the outlets were plugged; the glass vases were put away, etc. etc. You get the idea.

You can imagine how happy I was when my husband brought home a stack of brightly colored soft PVC foam puzzle mats. We covered our family room with them. I didn't even care that they clashed with my decor. I was happy to know that my precious little one's head wouldn't be having a nasty impact with our hardwood floors.

Those puzzle mats, and more to come, would cover parts of our house for years. I loved that I could hose them down, bring them to the back yard for a play session or picnic, or even get a quick yoga session in while the kids napped.

Our children learned to crawl, then walk, on those mats, and they served as a great play surface. Now that the kids are in high school, we use them mainly for camping, exercise, and our dogs, but they were a lifesaver.

Greatmats black and white checkered foam mats game room
When we got around to covering our whole basement, I loved how I could pull one up and wash it if some finger paint spilled. If someone got a little creative and jabbed divots in another one with a piece of Lego, I could easily replace it. Since the time my kids were little, a host of other mats have now become available that will suit your kids' unique needs.

Back to my favorite puzzle mats for just a bit. We learned that the cheaper, thinner mats available at big box stores just didn't offer the same cushy feel or bright colors as the mats we bought online. The cheaper mats didn't hold up as well, and frankly, I didn't really want big parts of my house covered by red, blue and green primary color mats.

Greatmats Foam Mats Orange Kids Yoga Room
By Kid #2, I started caring about aesthetics again, and appreciated that online specialty mat company, offered soft EVA foam mats in a boatload of colors, 15 to be exact.

I could mix and match colors and create patterns. Our daughter could have the bright pink she adored in her room, while my son chose a floor of blue and grey to match his camo bedding.

These mats are lead and latex free, which is so important if you have little ones crawling on them. They fit together easily, and have a soft surface on one side, and a textured, non slip surface on the other.

While I prefer the feel of the soft surface, the textured side proved to be more durable, and I didn't have to worry about anyone slipping. Plus, they added a layer of warmth to our basement, meaning that I could move the toys out of the family room and set up a safe play space downstairs.

Whenever we had playdates or birthday parties down there, I always got compliments on our our foam floors.

Greatmats has several types of foam mats of different thickness. One even has enough cushion that a raw egg will not break if you drop it on the mat from 68 feet! That will make a worried parent rest easy. Other mats are suitable for especially active or athletic kids.

As much as I love foam mats, they may not work for you. For example, in a high traffic area, a better option would be a raised tile like the Ergo Matta CushionTred, available in a variety of solid colors.

These rubber and PVC tiles are durable, but still soft, and supportive for your little ones. They are non slip and even dampen sound - definitely a bonus to any parent.

Even more cushy are solid StayLock PVC tiles, available with Bump Top or Orange Peel surfaces in a selection of colors. These tiles have the durability of rubber with the cushioning of foam.

Both the ErgoMatta and StayLock tiles are easy to clean - important with kids, and both can stand up to exercise equipment in case that play room is destined to become an exercise room someday.

Greatmats Roll Out Mats Martial Arts Kids
Perhaps you just want a temporary mat, or your toddler or preschooler is showing signs of becoming the next Simone Biles or John Cena. You might want to consider a fold out or rollout cheer, gymnastics or exercise mat.

These mats can be rolled or folded up when not in use, and easily moved from room to room.

They are great for rough housing and tumbling, as well as martial arts and cheerleading.

Covered in vinyl or carpet, these foam core mats are easy to clean and stash in a corner or closet, meaning they can be moved around your home, or even to grandma's house for the weekend.

They are the same mats you'll see at gymnastics centers, martial arts studios and cheerleading gyms, so you know your little one will be protected when they take a tumble.

Greatmats Folding Gym Mats for Kids
Whatever mat you choose, it is never too early to start protecting your child. Most mats are versatile and portable, and can go with you if you move to a new home or apartment. Mats can be repurposed when your children are grown, or passed on to relatives or preschools.

Another benefit of mats is they protect your floors, whether hardwood or carpet, from the everyday spills and accidents that are part and parcel of life with children.

Take a moment to think about your family's unique needs and get some advice from a knowledgeable customer service rep at
For more on this topic please review our Kids Play Mats and Flooring product page.