A treadmill mat is considered by some to be an essential accessory for any treadmill. The purpose of a treadmill floor mat is to protect the floor from scratches and grease from the treadmill, dampen the noise made by the machine and distribute the weight of the treadmill more evenly. Now if you’re not concerned about any of these things: your floor is old and it’s going in the basement (and therefore you don’t care about the noise), then you may not need one. However, if you are planning on using a treadmill under any other conditions a mat for treadmill is a very smart buy.
The price of the best treadmill floor mat is determined by the size of the mat, the thickness, and the material that has been used to make it. Treadmill mats generally measure 6.5 feet by 3 feet. That is sufficient for that average treadmill. However if you bought a pricier model (usually $2000 or more) you may need a longer mat. The mats usually measure around ¼ in. This is great for light use; walking, or using the treadmill a couple times a week. If you’re planning on using it everyday for a more intense workout it is wise to consider a slightly thicker mat, 3/8 of an inch or more. Treadmill mats are made out of a variety of materials including lightweight foam, cellular vinyl, PVC and thermo plastic vinyl. Mats made out of many of these materials compress over time and therefore will be less expensive. Mats made out of thermo plastic vinyl don’t compress as easily, and some even come with a no questions asked lifetime warranty.
Even with the above considerations, a longer mat, 3/8 in thick, made out of a more durable material won’t cost more than $50-$60. An average treadmill mat runs $35-$60.
When compared with the price of the treadmill and the obvious benefits of treadmill floors mats it is pretty obvious that it is a wise investment.
If you’re considering trying to use plywood or some other homemade substitute consider that such mats are specially designed to distribute the weight of the treadmill, and dampen the sound as well as protect the floor. A homemade substitute probably would not achieve all of those goals adequately – and plywood would be very loud.