The differences between home gym flooring and commercial gym flooring are fairly significant. You wouldn’t use commercial flooring in a home gym because it is a much more substantial product suited for heavy-duty use. In this article, we’ll explain the key differences with a few recommendations for your gym.
The biggest difference between home gym flooring and commercial gym flooring is that while home gyms typically use tiles that are 10mm to 20mm thick, commercial gyms use rubber flooring that is 30mm to 40mm thick.
It is normal for commercial gym floor tiles to be double the thickness of home gym floor tiles. That’s not to say you couldn’t use thicker rubber tiles in a home gym, but unless you’re powerlifting or lifting very heavy, 30mm to 40mm is overkill.
A lot of home gyms utilise high-density foam floor tiles over concrete or carpet. Foam is adequate for a home gym but not suitable for a commercial gym because it is not durable enough to cope with heavy-duty wear.
Commercial gyms always use rubber flooring in free weight zones, or a hard rubber floor finished with a polyurethane top layer in functional fitness zones.
Home gyms do not typically consider underlay in floor design because underlay adds to the price of an installation. Also, with home gyms, the benefits of underlay are difficult to gauge so most people just choose to save their money.
Commercial gyms always use underlay (or at least the well-advised ones do). High-performance underlay protects the base floor and absorbs sound and vibration, which is an important benefit to gyms where dropped weights are the norm.
Commercial gyms have a reinforced subfloor with boarding in the case of floorboards or a raised floor in the case of concrete. The subfloor protects the base floor from damage and helps enhance the insulation properties of the floor.
Home gyms don’t have a subfloor. Instead, the rubber tiles or rubber matting is installed directly over the base floor. This wouldn’t be suitable for a commercial gym, but home gyms can get away with it because of the lighter duty work.
When it comes to home gym flooring versus commercial gym flooring, commercial gym flooring is more carefully designed. There are targets for performance and acoustics which home gyms do not consider. All things being equal, commercial gym floors are the best, but home gym floors don’t need the same level of performance.