Workout Equipment

The 7 Best Exercise Mats – [Reviews & Guide 2019]

If there’s one piece of exercise equipment that we’d recommend, it’s the exercise mat. You can use them for an array of workouts, and they provide you a soft place to fall.

The best exercise mats can be used for strength training, Yoga, MMA and so much more. However, you should know that not all are made to the same level of quality.

That’s why we’ve gone ahead and done the research for you, coming up with the top exercise mats currently available.

For more of my recommendations, have a look through these popular Women’s Workout guide links: Kettlebells, Ab Machines, Resistance Bands.

Quick Answer: The 7 Best Rated Exercise Mats For 2019

  1. ProSource Tri-Fold Folding Thick Exercise Mat
  2. HemingWeigh Extra Thick Foam Exercise Mat
  3. Square36 Large Exercise Mat
  4. SPRI Exercise Mat for Fitness, Yoga & Floor Exercises
  5. BalanceFrom GoYoga All-Purpose Exercise Yoga Mat
  6. YOGA DESIGN LAB Exercise Yoga Mat
  7. BalanceFrom Thick Tri-Fold Folding Exercise Mat

We’ve reviewed the top rated exercise mat, followed by a comparison table and buying guide to help you decide on mat that will work best for you.

Best Exercise Mats

 ProSource Tri-Fold Exercise MatHemingWeigh Extra Thick Exercise MatSquare36 Large Exercise Mat
editorschoice
Dimensions:72" L x 24" W70" L x 23" W72" L x 72" W
Thickness:1 1/2"5/8"1/4"
Material:VinylFoamFoam
Portability:7/109/109/10

Exercise Mat Reviews

The ProSource Tri-Fold is our Editor’s Choice for the best exercise mat and are perfect for any type of exercise where you may require a bit of extra cushioning.

The thick cushion gives a supremely supportive surface ideal for stretching, martial arts, or just general workouts on hard surfaces like concrete.

For example, if you’re doing some bodyweight exercises like leg-lifts or push-ups, you’re probably not going to want to be doing that on cement or hardwood floors.

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Add this between you and the ground, and you’ll receive excellent protection where you need it the most.

Our joints are the parts of our body that are most injury-prone, so protect your knees/wrists/elbows with this pad. In addition, it’s quite durable thanks to the vinyl surface that’s tear and stretch-resistant. If that weren’t enough, it’s very easy to clean.

If you’re a personal trainer or gym teacher that has multiple people using your mat, that’s a huge plus. The biggest “con” for us was the lack of portability. The mat does fold up and include handles, but it is still quite bulky and a bit awkward to carry around.

 

ProSource Tri-Fold Folding Thick Exercise Mat at a Glance:

  • Size: 72″ L x 24″ W
  • Thickness: 1 1/2″
  • Material: Vinyl
  • Color Options: Blue, Grey, or Black
  • Portability: 7/10

HemingWeigh Extra Thick Foam Exercise Mat

If you want extra thickness in your workout mat, but want something a bit more portable than the last item on our list, then check out the HemingWeigh Extra Thick Foam Exercise Mat.

We should note that it is thinner than the Pro-Source Tri-Fold, but it is still quite cushy, thanks to the foam padding it’s made out of.

When we say “cushy”, it is thicker than your normal yoga mat, by far, but doesn’t come anywhere near the thickness the Pro-Source does.

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The upside to this one, is that you can actually fold it up like your traditional yoga mat. The integrated self-strapping system makes this a breeze, and also facilitates convenient storage.

Despite being so thick, it’s still quite lightweight. If you want the best workout mat that is thick, comfortable, and portable all packed into one package, then the HemingWeigh is an excellent option.

No matter if you want to use it for yoga, Pilates, stretches, or bodyweight exercises, you’ll find that this mat does an excellent job of keeping your body protected from hard surfaces, while adding cushiness.

The moisture-resistant skin doesn’t pull at bare skin, and is also quite easy to clean once you’re finished.

 

HemingWeigh Extra Thick Foam Mat at a Glance:

  • Size: 70″ L x 23″ W
  • Thickness: 5/8″
  • Material: Foam
  • Color Options: Black
  • Portability: 9/10

Perhaps you’re having trouble finding an exercise mat that’s big enough for you, or the routines you do. Sure, you could purchase multiple mats but that never works out the way it should.

If you need an all-encompassing cardio mat, check out the Square 36. It one of the best mats for a home gym where your workouts involve cardio and you require more space.

However, it can also be used for yoga, Pilates, and stretching.

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That mat only comes in black and is made of a very dense foam. It’s not the thickest out there but it definitely gets the job done. It’s made of foam that’s relieving in comparison to a hard floor, and is non-toxic, too.

It also has little nodes on the bottom side, to prevent it from slipping around and saving you from potentially falling! It’s one of the most durable mats we tried, so if you’re looking to really beat this thing up, it can handle it.

Due to its size, we were a bit worried about how portable it was. We soon realized this wouldn’t be an issue, thanks to the inclusion of the handy travel bag.

If you don’t need something this large, though, do yourself a favor and opt for a smaller one.

 

Square36 Large Exercise Mat at a Glance:

  • Size: 72″ L x 72″ W
  • Thickness: 1/4″
  • Material: Foam
  • Color Options: Black
  • Portability: 9/10

SPRI Exercise Mat for Fitness, Yoga & Floor Exercises

The SPRI Exercise Mat is your standard exercise mat you’ll find at the gym, but pumped up to the next level. As it’s made of extra-thick poly-foam, your bones and joints will thank you.

While it is relatively durable, we don’t recommend it for things like jump squats, or exercises where you’re going to put your shoes on it constantly.

We’d recommend it more for things like yoga, stretching, and slower body weight exercises like push-ups.

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The price is pretty affordable, all things considered. We wouldn’t necessarily call it a “budget product”, though. As far as transportation goes, it’s nice and lightweight, easy to roll up, and has a built-in handle.

We would have liked to have seen a bag/sleeve to go with it, but it’s not bad.

Quite possibly our biggest complaint was that it doesn’t grip onto the floor very well but if you doing mostly floor exercises, this might be the best exercise mat for sit ups and pushups.

Another minor disappointment however was that when it is rolled and stored for a while, it may start to crack.

 

SPRI Exercise Mat at at a Glance:

  • Size: 48″ L x 20″ W
  • Thickness: 1/2″
  • Material: Poly-Foam
  • Color Options: Black, Blue, Red
  • Portability: 8/10

If you’re looking for the best gym mat that is also the most portable mat out there, then we have the answer for you: BalanceForm GoYoga.

The all-purpose workout mat is half-an-inch thick to adequately cushion your spine, hips and joints from hard flooring. The double-sided non-slip surfaces are nice, because you don’t have to worry about accidentally putting it down on the wrong side and slipping.

The moisture-resistant mat washes easily with soap and water, but doesn’t get all grimy or absorb foul odors like some others do.

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Coming in 7 outstanding colors, there’s sure to be one that fits your personality well. It also comes with a free strap, which has Velcro-ended loops for a more secure hold.

We placed this portability rating perfectly, as we didn’t find one that was more convenient than this. If you’re looking for a good budget product, this is definitely it. Keep in mind, however, that it doesn’t come without its flaws.

After less than 10 uses, we noticed some indents where our feet/hands are typically placed. Not only that, but it can get some tiny tears quite easily. With that being said, definitely use this for lighter activities like yoga and stretching.

 

BalanceFrom GoYoga All-Purpose Mat at a Glance:

  • Size: 71″ L x 24″ W
  • Thickness: 1/2″
  • Material: High-Density Foam
  • Color Options: Black, Blue, Gray, Green, Pink, Purple, Red
  • Portability: 10/10

If you’re into hot yoga, or just find yourself sweating a lot, you know how slippery and uncomfortable it can be to have the wrong exercise mat.

What you need is a stable, supportive mat that can offer that extra grip. Thanks to the unique design of the The Combo Mat from Yoga Design lab, you’ll essentially get a mat and towel all in one.

In fact, you can even toss it in the washing machine once you’re done.

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Coming in an array of gorgeous colors and artistic patterns, you won’t need to worry about yours getting lost or mistaken for someone else’s.

The mat is the most eco-friendly we’ve come across as it’s made of sueded microfiber (of plastic bottles), bonded to a natural tree rubber base. It’s incredibly absorbent and luxurious-feeling, thanks to the substantial cushioning.

While it is quite durable, we’d really recommend it for exercises that don’t require your shoes to be on it heavily.

It’s one of the best fitness mats that’s also easy to take anywhere and comes with user-friendly straps so all you have to do is roll it up and go.

Finally, it washes quite easily as it is machine-washable. Just make sure not to put it in the dryer.

 

Yoga Design Lab The Combo Yoga Mat at a Glance:

  • Size: 70″ L x 24″ W
  • Thickness: 3/8″
  • Material: Sueded Microfiber/Natural Tree Rubber
  • Color Options: 19 Colors/Patterns
  • Portability: 10/10

The BalanceFrom is another ultra-thick fitness mat, much like the first item on our list. If you need one for various activities like MMA, other martial arts, Pilates, and more intense activities, then don’t skip this one.

This mat is one of the few that provides an exceptional amount of resistance. It allows you to keep your balance well, while also keeping your body properly guarded from the cold, hard flooring.

The exterior is made with non-toxic, lead-free, puncture-resistant vinyl that makes sure not to absorb any liquids.

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This also means you can wash it with a simple soap and water mixture. It’s one of a couple on this list which we feel confident can actually handle some heavy activity without tearing or wearing down.

The stitching also increases its long-lasting capabilities. The 3-panel design makes it foldable, and the handle on each mat makes it convenient to carry and for storage.

Velcro on all sides makes it seamless to hook various mats together, so you can create a large workout area or use it for tumbling. If you’re looking for the best exercise mat for hardwood floors, the BalanceFrom is a good choice!

 

BalanceFrom Tri-Fold at a Glance:

  • Size: 72″ L x 24″ W
  • Thickness: 2″
  • Material: Vinyl
  • Color Options: Black, Blue, Pink, Purple
  • Portability: 7/10

Exercise Mat Comparison Table

Exercise Mat DimensionsThicknessMaterialRating
ProSource Tri-Fold Exercise Mat72" L x 24" W1 1/2"Vinyl4.4 / 5.0
HemingWeigh Foam Exercise Mat70" L x 23" W5/8"Foam4.5 / 5.0
Square36 Large Exercise Mat72" L x 72" W1/4"Foam4.6 / 5.0
SPRI Exercise Mat for Fitness71" L x 24" W1/2"High-Density Foam4.3 / 5.0
BalanceFrom GoYoga Exercise Mat71" L x 24" W1/2"High-Density Foam4.3 / 5.0
YOGA DESIGN LAB Exercise Mat70" L x 24" W3/8"Microfiber/Natural Tree Rubber4.4 / 5.0
BalanceFrom Tri-Fold Exercise Mat72" L x 24" W2"VinylVinyl

How to Choose the Best Exercise Mat – Buying Guide

best workout matNow that you’ve had a look at each of the best exercise mats, there’s a good chance you still haven’t decided on one. Perhaps you have some more questions, or aren’t quite certain which would work well enough for your needs. Whatever the case may be, we’re here to help with our buying guide, below.

Type of Use

What do you intend to use your new mat for? Yoga and stretching? High intensity body weight exercises? Martial arts? This is the first thing you must figure out, as not every mat is made to facilitate every activity.

Typically (but not always), the smaller, thinner mats are going to be designed for more low-intensity activity, such as stretching or even yoga. They’re also more lightweight, but often have a solid grip.

The thickest mats are the most resilient and are made for the highest level of activity, such as martial arts, wrestling, gymnastics, and so on. They must be thick to protect you during the types of moves you’ll perform on them.

Also think about if you intend to wear shoes on your mat. As you probably saw above, not every product is made to hold up against shoes. If they’re thinner yoga/stretching mats, you can be almost certain that they’re not made for this.

Equipment

Can your mat be used with equipment on it? Not all mats are made to be able to withstand the weight of bulky machines, such as benches or spinning bikes.

In fact, they can even do more damage to your flooring if improperly used. The most obvious indicator of this is going to be the thickness of the mat in question. If it measures in at half-an-inch or less, you can bet it’s not going to work with heavy equipment.

Material

This kind of goes in conjunction with the first point, but what types of material is your mat made out of? If it’s a soft foam mat, you’re going to want to be gentle with it.

While some types of foam hold up better than others, most of the typical mats you see are going to tear somewhat easily. In contrast, if you need a sturdy product, you could have one made with foam. Just make sure that it has some type of covering, like vinyl.

Vinyl is often tear-resistant and stretch-resistant so it keeps its integrity well and can handle high-intensity activities. These are often used in schools and gym classes, because it can handle various users per day without ever wearing down.

In addition, you’ll want to ideally go with a product that’s non-toxic. If you want to take that a step further, go with an eco-friendly product like the Yoga Design Lab mat.

It’s made up of natural tree rubber and a microfiber made with recycled plastic bottles. You’ll feel better about your purchase, and you’ll know where the product actually came from.

best mats for home gym

Ease of Portability

What are you planning on doing with your workout mat? Or rather, where do you plan on taking it? If you’re just going to be using it in your home gym, or for practicing your routine at home, this won’t be very important.

However, if you’re intending on taking it to classes or to the gym, then you’ll want to take into consideration how easy it is to pack along. The 3-panel, thicker mats do fold down and have handles, but they’re a bit more bulky and may not fit into your car easily.

However, a mat that easily rolls up and has straps or a bag with it is convenient as it doesn’t take up much room and you can sling it over your shoulder.

In addition, think about the weight and size of the product. If it’s heavy and bulky, you’re not going to feel as motivated to take it with you as a more compact, lightweight one.

Safety

Whenever it’s regarding any type of exercise, safety should be placed first. That’s why you must look at how stable your mat will be for you and your intended use.

If you’re going to be jumping and running over it, you want to have absolute confidence that it’s not going to move on you. If you’re just going to be sedentary or using it for slower motions, this won’t be quite as crucial for you. If you can, select a mat that features both sides with a kind of grip.

That way you don’t have to worry about which side to put it down on.

Ease of Cleaning

You’re definitely going to want to clean your fitness mat before and after each use – especially if you’re using it in a public setting. Some mats can only be cleaned with certain substances, while others just require the classic soap-and-water combo.

Others, such as the Yoga Design Lab mat, can be tossed into the washing machine without a thought and be ready to go once it dries out.

Price

How much are you willing to spend on your new exercise buddy? Think about how rough you’re going to be on it, and how often you’ll use it. If it’s going to be a daily use, then consider investing a bit more into a high-quality mat.

Your body and your wallet, ultimately, will thank you. By putting out just a bit more cash, you’ll actually end up saving money due to the more durable materials you’ll receive.

FAQs For Exercise Mats

Square36 Large Exercise Mat

Q: How can I benefit from an exercise mat?

First, your body won’t have as much pressure on it. If you’re jumping around, your joints are absorbing impact. On hard flooring, your joints are essentially absorbing all of that impact.

Once you place a mat in-between you and that flooring, the mat will now take the brunt of it. Of course, this depends on the thickness of the mat, and the materials it’s made up with.

It also serves as protection from your home flooring, if you’re using it as a barrier between you and your floors, or heavy exercise equipment and your floors. Finally, it keeps things more hygienic. No one wants to share mats with a bunch of strangers, not knowing when they were last cleaned or what germs the mat is housing.

Q: Where should I store my mat?

Ideally, you’ll want to keep it stored in an area that’s neither too warm, nor cold, nor humid. Keeping it in the corner of your bedroom or under your bed is usually a pretty good location. Keeping it in the garage, basement, or attic could cause it to crack due to the temperature.

Q: How often should I clean my mat?

Daily, if you use it daily. Every time you use your mat, we recommend giving it a wipe-down when you’re done. If it’s a shared mat, before and after each use.

Tips For Using Your Exercise Mat

#1: Try not to wear shoes on your mat unless it has a vinyl skin

This is because exposed foam can break down quickly when shoes are worn on it, and even cause some little rips and tears.

#2: If you’re storing it in a cold environment, try to store it completely flat

This will avoid possible cracking that can happen if you store it rolled up.

#3: Try to keep your mat out of the sun as much as you can

Unless the mat is one of the 3-ply products which can take more abuse, keep your mats out of the way of UV rays, which can speed up the breakdown process and even fade the colors.

Final Thoughts

So, which one of the best exercise mats will be making its way to your doorstep? Whichever one you select, just know that these are the cream of the crop. They’re comfortable, durable, and definitely worth it. We hope that this guide has helped you select the perfect product for you. We’ll see you again soon!

Comfort
Portability
Value

The ProSource Tri-Fold is our Editor's Choice as the best exercise mat with its combination of comfort and portability.

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