Tumbling mats are an essential part of gymnastics training and safety. Tumbling mats provide not only protection for your child but also comfort and support for all skills being mastered. So, when looking for a tumbling mat to use at home, you want to get the same quality that is being used at the gymnastic gym. Just like any sport, practice makes perfect. Practicing at home is key when trying to master certain skills that need extra work. Regardless of the gymnasts’ skill level, choosing the best tumbling mat is important.
When choosing the right equipment, you want to be sure you’re informed with all the proper information to choose the best tumbling mat for your gymnasts’ needs. Searching tumbling mats for sale can be overwhelming with the amount of options to choose from. But before you start looking, there are some factors to be taken into consideration to narrow down your search. Below are a few helpful questions to ask yourself before investing in the best tumbling mat for your little gymnast.
Using A Tumbling Mat At Home
You need to determine what practice skills will be the primary focus for your gymnast when using the tumbling mat at home. Various amounts of skills can be learned with this gymnastics equipment for basic tumbling skills, such as rolls, handstands, walkovers, and cartwheels. It can also be used to master landings and standing back and front tucks. Figuring out the primary focus of use is the first step to investing in the best tumbling mat to meet the needs of your child.
Thick Tumbling Mats Vs. Thin Tumbling Mats: Which is better?
The question should not be which is better, but which is more effective for your gymnasts needs. Yes, the thicker tumbling mats do provide better protection. But when practicing on basic tumbling skills as rolls, a thinner mat will work just as well. Protecting your child is extremely important, but be aware that when choosing a very thick tumbling mat, your gymnast may not be able to practice certain stunts. The thickness of the mat will cause their hands and feet to sink into the mat; thus, causing improper technique.
There are many different thicknesses available, but the standard thickness is 1 3/8, which is used for lower impact applications. A thicker option is mainly used for high impact applications, such as high impact skills, which require landing mats. When deciding on what thickness would be best, do not hesitate to read tumbling mat reviews. Take note of what other parents are saying, and how their gymnast is benefiting from the equipment they have chosen to invest in. Tumbling mat reviews can be negative, but that can also be helpful and prevent you from making the same mistakes.
Does the Foam Material in Tumbling Mats Matter?
Cheap tumbling mats typically do not contain the foam material that will provide the most strength and shock absorption. Also, cheap tumbling mats are meant for play and not meant to practice mastering a skill, ESPECIALLY not for children. The best tumbling mats contain either Polyethylene (PE) or Polyurethane (PU) foam or both. Neither one of these foams is better than the other, just different. PE is firm and rebounds quickly, whereas PU is softer and does not rebound quickly. PE is perfect for stunts where you land on your feet or hands. It will help to prevent twisting ankles or wrists.
PE is more shock absorbent but that does not mean it will have a soft landing if your gymnast falls. The energy is restrained to just a small area. This type of foam is used in thinner mats. Unlike PE, PU is the best at absorbing energy and has more cushion to help protect from a fall. PU is mostly used in thicker tumbling mats, such as crash pads where the gymnast will land on their body. Again, the tumbling mat reviews will also be beneficial to read here concerning the different foams. The voice of other parents with the same concerns can be helpful when making your decision for the best tumbling mat.
What Are the Different Types of Tumbling Gymnastic Mats?
There are many different types of tumbling mats for sale, and different uses for each of them. Here is a list of the three most popular tumbling mats home use.
- Panel Mats are the most popular and used for some of the most basic tumbling skills. The Panel mat folds up for easy storage, and comes in a wide variety of colors. The length depends on your little gymnast and how much room you can afford to spare. This type of tumbling mat has Velcro and can be connected to other mats if you later decided that a longer mat is what is needed.
- Incline Mats are used at all levels of skill. There are a range of sizes available as your child gets older. Incline mats build skill in beginners when it comes to rolling forward and backward. They also help in mastering walkover, and handsprings. Most incline mats come with handles for easy carrying.
- Flexi-Roll at Home Mats are the same type of flooring your gymnast will be competing on. This is a huge plus for many, as practicing on the same type of floor at home is not only an advantage but gets your gymnast comfortable. The flexi-roll at home mats comes in three different sizes with 5 feet by 10 feet being the largest size.
Remember, with the many tumbling mats for sale, just a cheap tumbling mat will not do. Tumbling mats for home practice use should have the same advantages as the ones used on the competitive floor. When looking at tumbling mats for sale, it is a good idea to read the tumbling mat reviews to gather all positive and negative feedback. Choosing the best tumbling mat for the home for your little gymnast is not just a purchase but an investment.
Top 5 Tumbling Mats for Home
After knowing what to consider when investing in the best tumbling mat for your gymnast, you begin your search for the best tumbling mats for sale. To help get you started, here are five tumbling mat reviews with pros and cons to help you with your choice for the best tumbling mat for home use.
Tumbling Mat Reviews
Let’s begin with the We Sell Mats Gymnastic Tumbling Mat. This tumbling mat for sale comes in many various colors, and offers two sizes. The smaller size is 4 feet by 6 feet and the larger size is 4 feet by 8 feet. You can either get the tumbling mat with a thickness of 1.5” inches or 2” inches. The We Sell Mats Gymnastic Tumbling Mat, is made of crosslink polyethylene (PE) foam which that foam is high grade and known to be firm. The outer coating is made of a heavy-duty 18-ounce vinyl, with Velcro attached on all sides. The Velcro allows the mat to be connected to multiple mats for that extra room your gymnast may need for long tumbling rolls, or multiple cartwheels. This tumbling mat for sale folds up into 4 sections for easy carry and storage.
The tumbling mat reviews for the We Sell Mats Gymnastic Tumbling Mat, are mostly positive. Reviewers are happy with their investment, and with the many uses of the mat. Many reviewers mentioned how firm and sturdy the tumbling mat is for home use when practicing gymnastic skills. The tumbling mat reviews also mention how the mat can be used under a gymnastic beam providing their gymnast with a forgiving surface.
The We Sell Mats Gymnastic Tumbling Mat contains the cross-link polyethylene foam that offers firmness and durability. This tumbling mat for sale can be used for a wide variety of applications, such as tumbling rolls. Also, multiple handsprings can be done when more mats are connected to the Velcro the mat provides adding more room so your gymnast can get the same advantage as on the gymnastic gym mat. The thickness and sturdiness of the mat allow for back handsprings to be easily accomplished. The 2” inch thickness is recommended for more advance skill applications like the back handspring. The We Sell Mats Gymnastic Tumbling Mat, is a great buy. From the polyethylene foam providing firmness and durability to the massive positive reviews, this tumbling mat for the home is worth it.
The next tumbling mat for sale is the New Mixed Thick Folding Panel Gymnastic Mat. This tumbling mat for home use is available in only one size, with three color selections to choose from. Made with EPE eco-friendly foam, this tumbling mat is not as durable as the cross-link polyethylene foam offered by other competitors. The thickness available for this mat is 2” inches. This tumbling mat for the home also comes with a sewn in handle and folds up for easy storage. Just like its previous competitor this tumbling mat for sale also offers Velcro on the ends of the mat to attach other tumbling mats.
The tumbling mat reviews I have researched all give the New Mixed Thick Folding Panel Gymnastic Mat pretty good reviews. Reviewers have mentioned how this tumbling mat for the home is a great deal for the price. The only complaint I have found in the many reviews is that the mat slips and moves on flooring without carpet. This can be dangerous for your gymnast even when doing the most simplest of gymnastic applications. When doing gymnastic applications, you want the best tumbling mat for your gymnast that will stay in one place.
The New Mixed Thick Folding Panel Gymnastic Mat is one of the cheapest tumbling mat out there. The reasoning behind it being cheaper than most is because of the EPA foam it is made of. EPA is a low-grade Polyethylene foam. The foam is basic and does not have the durability most other mats have. Also, because that mat does not have a non-slip material to keep it from slipping, the gymnastic applications performed on this tumbling mat for home use are limited. If cost is a huge factor when making your decision when searching tumbling mats for sale, it is highly recommended that you purchase a good non-slip pad for underneath for the safety of your gymnast.
The Soozier PU Leather Gymnastics Tumbling Mat is another tumbling mat for home use that is for sale. This mat comes in various colors and sizes. The larger sizes are not available in certain colors, so that does limit selection choices. The three sizes available are 4 feet by 6 feet, 4 feet by 8 feet, and 4 feet by 10 feet. The thickness on all three sizes is 2” inches. The tumbling mat is made with EPE foam just like the New Mixed Mat. It also contains Velcro for easy connection of other mats for tumbling runs. The cover is made of PU leather which makes the tumbling mat for home use very easy to clean. This tumbling mat for sale also has sewn in handles for easy maneuvering around the home.
The Soozier tumbling mat reviews are mostly positive. The reviewers have stated that the mat provides the thickness their gymnast was needing. According to reviewers, the mat is frim enough. It is reviewed as not interfering with their gymnast’s handstands and walkovers. It is stated by reviewers that this tumbling mat for home use provides enough cushion when their gymnasts stance is broken and helps prevents the gymnast from hurting themselves. I only came across one complaint that was mentioned quite often. The mat does split at the seams and sewn in handles do not hold up very well. Most reviewers have stated that a little after purchase the seams start to come undone. Also, mentioned in the tumbling mat reviews, is that the handles are torn after only a couple of months.
This tumbling mat for sale is made with EPE foam, which is not a very durable foam. The durability of this mat is not long lasting. From the complaints on the splitting of seams, you will need another tumbling mat for the home sooner than later. The gymnastic applications that can be performed on this tumbling mat for home use are more than expected according to the tumbling mat reviews. It is cushioned enough to break a fall. I also found that the price can be relatively higher depending on the color of mat you choose. From what I found there is no difference in the materials of the mat, just color. This is probably due to the popularity of the color. The many sizes available give the consumer great choices to choose the best tumbling mat needed for your gymnast. If you purchase the largest one, you can save on buying more tumbling mats when your gymnast needs to practice their tumbling runs or do multiple cartwheels.
Next up is the Tumbl Trak Folding Gymnastic Mat. This tumbling mat for sale is available in one size only, 4 feet by 8 feet, with two thickness options of 1 3/8” inches and 2” inches. There are nine colors available to choose from with this tumbling mat. Made with the highest quality of cross-linked polyethylene foam. This tumbling mat for home use is very durable. It contains the Velcro on two ends and has four-sided hook and loops to connect on all sides just like the other competitor’s tumbling mats for sale. The vinyl coating this tumbling mat for home use contains is a high-quality coating called knife-coated vinyl. This knife-coated vinyl that provide the outer covering with more durability to prevent tears.
There are many positive tumbling mat reviews for the Tumbl Trak. One of the many positive tumbling mat reviews, is that it is durable, very thick, high quality, and that will last many years. The only one complaint on a few posts was the vinyl smell from the mat. Many said there was a smell, but after a few days the smell was gone. One reviewer said she aired it out in the garage when it arrived, and after that there was no more smell. I must mention that one reviewer did say the chemical smell did last, and when a neighbor friend came over with her child, the child broke out in welts after playing on the tumbling mat. I only mention this because if this is an allergic reaction, it can be serious and as a consumer you must be aware. This was the only one review that mentioned this out of the many positive tumbling mat reviews for the Tumbl Trak. Most all positive reviews stated that the mat is firm and the two choices of thickness is beneficial for their gymnast doing certain applications that require a thicker surface.
The Tumbl Trak provides strong durability with the high grade cross linked polyethylene foam. This tumbling mat for sale has a high-grade vinyl coating, a knife-coated vinyl with a reinforced fabric to offer the most tearing strength. This is a feature that is great to have when tearing is a concern after many uses of the mat. The stars and stripes, and flower power mats are said to have the feature of the non-skid material on the bottom to prevent sliding or moving when practicing the gymnastic applications. However, the other mats available in the different colors do not mention this certain feature, but according to reviews all mats provide the non-skid material. This is a great bonus feature. You want to be sure your mat will stay in place when your gymnast is in the middle of mastering a skill. This tumbling mat is ideal for all ages and of course the Velcro attached to add more mats for more tumbling room. The Tumbl Trak clearly states in the description, and is the only one that states this of all the tumbling mats for home use out there, that it has been tested for lead and has passed the requirements by the Consumer Protection Safety Improvement Act of 2008.
The last tumbling mat for sale up for review, is the Z-Athletic Gymnastic Tumbling Mat. This tumbling mat for home use comes in five different colors, and five sizes. The sizes to choose from are 2 feet by 6 feet, 4 feet by 6 feet, 4 feet by 10 feet, 4 feet by 12 feet, and 5 feet by 10 feet. The thickness available for all sizes is 2” inches. This mat is made with cross-linked polyethylene foam for durability. The vinyl covering on this mat is an 18-ounce high quality vinyl, and of course comes with Velcro for other mat additions.
Great reviews for this tumbling mat for home use. It is not a cheap tumbling mat. You will be getting your monies worth. Most all reviews describe this mat as cushioned, firm, and well worth the money. From what I researched, I did not come across negative reviews for this tumbling mat for sale.
The Z- Athletic provides great durability. To have all the many size options available is nice especially when you do not want to buy many tumbling mats to get more room for your gymnast. This tumbling mat for home use has been described as having a similar feel to the best tumbling mats you will find at your gymnastic gym. While your gymnast is practicing, they will get the support and firmness needed for each application they are performing.
Now, that you have a couple of selections on tumbling mats for the home, you want to choose the one that will be the best tumbling mat for your gymnast. Whether it be the thickness needed to cushion and support your gymnast or length needed so your gymnast can fully practice all gymnastic applications without the worry of space needed. The tumbling mat for home use you choose will help your gymnast be the best they can be. Practice makes perfect.