Heavy weights can cause damage to all kinds of floors. So, before starting a home gym, it is best to plan ahead by purchasing a protective flooring that absorbs the shocks of dropped weights preventing damage to the floor and equipment. Below is a guide to home gym flooring.
Most gym flooring for both home use and commercial is made up of rubber tiles designed to take the shock out of equipment getting dropped on it.
Different grades of rubber are used which is reflected in the varying prices of flooring. Gym mats Cheaper mats are usually recycled low grade rubber. Recycled rubber itself is not a problem as long as the rubbers used have gone through a vulcanisation process which strengthens the rubber making it longer wearing. A lot of the producers of these cheaper mats do not have the machinery required to carry out such a task. Another problem with cheap mats is that they are usually simply glued together using Urethane adhesive which can be harmful. If cheaper or recycled mats are purchased check that they are vulcanised. A better option if price is not so much of a concern is virgin rubber. Made from new unused rubber, it is reflected in its characteristics; it offers a greater durability, more rebound and gives a maximum amount of grip both in dry and wet conditions. Virgin rubber mats are used in the Olympics for weight lifting, martial arts and aerobics.
Carpet and cork
Although many home gyms would benefit from rubberised flooring, cost is an issue, so a good compromise is carpet. With carpet, it is best to avoid any kind of standard home carpet with a high pile as this makes it difficult for fitness machines to stand flat and stable. When purchasing carpet for a home gym, it is better to look for a carpet meant for high traffic areas similar to those used in offices, as these carpets wear well and are more durable. If carpet movement is a concern, carpet tiles are more sturdy and easier to fit than a complete carpet. Cork Cork offers many properties including resilience and durability coupled with the fact that it has a history of use within exercise makes it a great cost-effective choice for the home gym. Cork has a honeycomb structure that makes it extremely durable. Other qualities include being fire retardant, not shedding fibres and not absorbing dust making it ideal for users who suffer from allergies. Like rubber cork is a shock absorber and offers grip while wet, it also muffles noise making it great for gym equipment.