If you are considering or have just bought a treadmill you may be in the market for a mat. It could be that a salesman is pushing you to buy all sorts of extras or it could be that you are looking for the best extras to prolong the life of your expensive running machine. In either case it is worth considering a rubber mat for your treadmill. The natural questions that will go through your head will be do you really need one, which size to get if you are going to buy and how much to spend?
Do I Need A Mat?
You don’t really need a floor mat to make good use of your treadmill but using a mat can bring some neat long term benefits. The main purpose of a mat will be to protect carpets and flooring from damage. Running machines can be heavy beasts and the slightest vibration through the feet of the machine can damage flooring and tear carpets. A mat will help you avoid annoying damage. It is also worth considering that a mat will protect your flooring from the oil that may come off treadmill rollers and dusty dirt that electric motors attract.
A secondary purpose of a rubber mat is to prolong the life of your treadmill. A heavy duty mat will reduce vibration through the machine and help, long term, in keeping all the fittings tight and prevent the machine from slowly shaking itself to bits. More importantly a mat will reduce the amount of dust that can get into the motor from a carpeted floor extending the motors life and prevent rollers getting clogged with dusty grime and so reduce wear.
Finally it is worth considering that a mat will reduce noise levels for the user and other members of the household. Most modern electric treadmills are well cushioned and reasonably quiet but if your flooring is timber or tile even the quietest of machines can run louder than expected. A noise reduction mat will eliminate this noise.
Which Size Should You Get?
Most treadmill floor mats are 6.5 ft by 3ft and are suitable for a large number of models but some of the higher end home machines can be as long as 7ft so watch out you may need an extra long mat!
You can usually get a choice of a mat roll or click-together tiles. Both options are usually available in a choice of up to three thicknesses. The standard thickness for a mat tends to be 1/4 inch which is great for hard floors particularly if your treadmill use is likely to be intermittent. If you are planning to use your machine on a carpet be aware that a 1/4 inch mat may become dimpled and damaged from the weight of the machine and may ultimately tear.
If you intend to be a heavy user or you are going to be operating the treadmill on a carpeted area it is often wiser to go for a thicker mat or opt for a tile set up with spare tiles available, these tend to be the best mats for carpet. A 3/8 inch mat is often ideal in these circumstances and will last the course as well as protecting your flooring and offering greater sound dampening qualities.
How Much Should You Spend?
Cheap treadmill mats are widely available. A basic size mat up to 7ft long, whether a single roll of numerous tiles, is likely to cost from $35 -$50. A 3/8 inch mat is likely to be about $10 more expensive than the thinner 1/4 inch but you can still pick them up for less than $50. Numerous suppliers have mats for sale so prices are usually competitive and differ infrequently. If you need to check the latest price you can check a whole range of mat sizes and prices at Amazon here :
Buying a treadmill mat is a wise choice offering protection to your flooring and extending the life of your machine. Be sure to make the right size choice and not pay over the odds for your treadmill mat and your purchase will give you cost effective benefits.