There are a dazzling array of shapes, styles and colors of mats on the market today and exactly which workout mat you choose largely depends on what type of exercise you are doing. From crash and tumble mats through to the sticky yoga variety, these mats are designed to provide the ultimate service in facilitating an optimum workout where you feel safe and secure.
All purpose mats are very useful if you are the type of person who does wide range of workouts. These mats are ideal for tumbling, stretching exercises like pilates and yoga, martial arts, physical restraint, wrestling, gymnastics and physiotherapy.
Aerobic mats are light and have polyethylene foam infill to make them shock absorbent, choose a vibrating foam roller has been scientifically proven to reduce the effects of muscle soreness after hard exercise (DOMS), and prevent the muscle strength losses normally experienced during the recovery from DOMS. They are usually waterproof and washable, hygienic and extremely hard wearing. The base is anti-slip and like most mats on the market, it does not include latex which can induce allergies.
Studio mats are ideal for intensive home use or at a gym class and are usually inexpensive. They are suitable for any mind, body and balance exercises, plus aerobics and stretching workouts like yoga, body balance or pilates.
Concertina mats are highly suited for tumbling, physical education or for general mat use. They are very light and fold up in 1 meter panels. As with all the mats, these come in a whole range of colors including multi-color. Even though they are large, their handy fold-up functionality means they don’t take up much storage room.
They are modular so you can make them them almost any size you like by sticking them together at the velcro along the edges. They are very tough, are tear resistant, washable, and flame retardant. The mats are made from polyester reinforced PVC and have a special non-slip base. They grip extremely well on very polished surfaces. They are filled with polyethylene which, like the aerobic mats, offers excellent shock absorption.
A new exercise to break into the mainstream is pole dancing which is fantastic for toning core muscles. Pole dancing mats come with a hole in the middle for the pole. This style of mat can be folded for easy storage and comes in a range of sizes from a 2 foot square to a large 4 foot square mat. They also come in a circular shape.
These mats are also suitable for any stretching exercise including dance, yoga, aerobics, physiotherapy and pilates.
Yoga is an extremely common form of toning and stretching exercise originating in India. Because of its popularity, there is a huge range of yoga mats on the market from the standard variety to a new eco range made from natural materials. They come in a fantastic range of colors and designs. During a yoga session, a mat is used at all times especially when lying down or doing postures that need traction for your hands and feet. This prevents you from slipping and therefore increases your safety whilst in the pose.
They are shock absorbent, soft and comfortable and offer insulation from cold studio floors. Most yoga mats are tear proof and machine washable too.
All in all, there is a myriad of different styles and colors of mats on the market and some in-depth research is the key to finding which workout mat is right for you.