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What Mats Are Used For Cartwheels?

By Paige Cerulli Created: August, 2022 - Modified: August, 2022

Cartwheels are a key skill for gymnasts to learn, and cartwheel mats can help students to learn this skill safely. Whether you’re outfitting a professional gym or want to buy mats for your kids to use at home, finding the right cartwheel mat can be key to a young gymnast’s success.

The Best Cartwheel Mats

The right cartwheel mat for a gymnast will depend on that person’s skill level. When you’re working with a beginner gymnast, then an incline mat can be the best choice to help that gymnast learn.

Incline Mats

Incline mats help beginner gymnasts to learn the basics of a cartwheel. The mat’s design allows you to guide the gymnast’s hands and feet into the right position, supporting the athlete as they move through the cartwheel and experience the motion.

With time, the incline mat helps the gymnast to learn the basics of a cartwheel. They grow familiar with how to initiate and control the motion, and the mat is there to catch them if they need assistance.

Once gymnasts can perform cartwheels well with an incline mat, it’s time to change the mat. Folding mats are ideal for practice.

By unfolding the mat, you can create a lane that’s perfect for cartwheel practice and training, and if you buy mats with hook and loop closures on either end, you can connect them together to form longer lanes. Those longer lanes are ideal for tumbling passes and training.

Folding Mats

Folding mats offer the firmness that athletes need to learn and practice cartwheels and other tumbling skills. At the same time, the mats offer enough shock absorption to cushion a fall when a cartwheel doesn’t end as planned.

Folding mats offer several other benefits, too. Because you can fold them up, they’re easy to store away.

You can also partially fold the mats for skill building. The resulting platform can help to give athletes support as they practice new skills, much in the same way that an incline mat offers support.

Options for Intermediate and Advanced Athletes

Intermediate and advanced athletes who are performing cartwheels on the balance beam will need a different type of landing mat to assist with their practice and competition. In these cases, thick landing mats offer the increased shock absorption needed when an athlete falls from height.

Landing Mats

Landing mats for competitions often measure seven inches thick or more and are filled with a high-quality foam. That design results in increased shock absorption that can contribute to injury prevention for athletes.

These mats are also equipped with heavy-duty handles, so they can be moved and positioned underneath key equipment, like balance beams. They are versatile investments for your gym, since you can use them for competitions, gymnastics passes, tumbling, and cheerleading, too.

Choosing the Right Cartwheel Mat for Your Gym

At Greatmats, we have a wide variety of gym mats for sale. As you explore different mat options, consider the importance of the following qualities.

Durability and Overall Quality

Gym mats aren’t all made the same. You can find cheap gym mats for sale, but these mats are often made with subpar materials and won’t hold up to significant use.

Instead, look for products like those we offer at Greatmats. Our gym mats feature durable, thick vinyl exteriors that are able to withstand use in commercial gyms and heavy wear and tear.

gym mats for cartwheels

Our mats often feature double-stitched seams, making them hard-wearing and stronger than many of the other mats that you will find on the market.

The quality of the foam matters, too. We sell mats made with high-quality foam that offers the cushion and shock absorption your athletes need.


Gym mats can be large and heavy, and it’s rare that you’ll be able to simply leave them in place. Consider how portable the mats that you’re buying are.

Large single fold mat

Folding mats are easy to move and store, but for larger mats, like crash pads, make sure there are plenty of handles so multiple people can help to move them.


In many cases, it’s important for your gym and cartwheel mats to be sized appropriately for the athletes who will be using them. This is particularly true of incline mats, which should be as long as an athlete is tall with their hands stretched up above their head.

thick folding gym mats for cartwheels

When you’re shopping for crash mats or folding mats, you have a little more flexibility when it comes to the mat’s size. In these instances, larger mats are more versatile and offer greater coverage area.

Don’t forget that if you buy folding mats with hook and loop closures on all four sides, you’ll have greater versatility in terms of how you assemble the mats. You can connect multiple mats together for greater coverage, which is ideal for group routines or tumbling passes.


Finally, consider the mat’s color. At Greatmats, we offer custom color options so you can order mats that reflect your team or school’s colors.

The result is a cohesive look, and it’s a great way to show your pride in your school or team.