What Is the Best Free Weight Gym Flooring?

What Is the Best Free Weight Rooms Gym Flooring Video

Using free weights can be hazardous to your floor's health. Even if you're careful, it's not uncommon for a dumbbell or barbell to be dropped. Weight racks are also heavy and can damage many flooring surfaces. The most common answer for this problem is rubber flooring. It is relatively inexpensive, easy to install, and looks great. It also provides a nice barrier between falling free weights and a concrete floor.

is available in a variety of thicknesses and can be purchased in rolls, interlocking tiles, or straight edged (or bevelled edge) mats.

Rubber Flooring Rolls for Free Weights

Rolls are typically the least expensive option per square foot but can be the most challenging to install simply because of the sheer weight of the rolls. Determining the thickness you need depends on the amount of weight you'll be using.

If you're dealing with hand held weights that are fairly light, you can often get by with 1/4 inch. For most applications, however, we recommend 8 mm or 3/8 inch thicknesses. These are the most common thicknesses for most commercial and home gyms. One-half-inch rubber should be used with weights of more than 100 pounds.

Rubber Mats for Heavy Weightlifting

For powerlifting areas where extreme weights will be used, and potentially dropped, we recommend at least a 3/4 inch thickness. 1 inch is the thickest rubber mat option available and can be used with practically any weights. You may hear someone say they like to use horse stall mats under their olympic lifting platform as it holds up best for exercises such as deadlifts or overhead squats and can be found relatively inexpensive.

While horse stall mats can definitely be suitable for this type of activity, be aware that with a cheaper price tag, you'll also find that horse mats generally give off more rubber odor. For the most part your looking for the general 4x6 foot size and 1/2 or 3/4 inch thickness that you often find in horse stall mats.

Greatmats offers 4x6 or similar sized mats that are designed specifically for indoor use and offer a lower odor option that is great for weight room environments.

Specialty Weight Room Rubber Tiles

You'll find the most options among rubber gym tiles. Popular for their easy installation and low amount of waste for custom areas, rubber weight room tiles are the easiest to find designed for a specific purpose. The can be quite thin and economical for home gyms with light weight or body weight style exercise. You can find them as thick as 2.75 inches with a sound dampening support system for dropping of heavy weights as well as excellent cushion for box jumps. You can find rubber gym floor tiles with puzzle style interlocks or u-hook style interlocks that are hidden, showing only straight edges of the tiles. There are even some that us a pin style connection system.

Rubber Weight Training Floors

Rubber flooring does not have to be glued down. However, in commercial settings or places where the flooring will be installed permanently, we recommend it. For other areas, we recommend a double-sided carpet tape when using rolled rubber. This is to prevent the ends from curling or the pieces from moving.
For more on this topic please review our Home Gym Flooring and Mats product page.