How thick should home gym flooring be? Good question. The answer depends on the substrate and how you’ll use your home gym. Some experts recommend 10mm, others 20mm. We think it should be higher than this.
Why is thickness important?
Home gym flooring should provide the safest possible foundation for you to get a good workout into your day. It should be non-slip, easy to clean, and impact resistant so if you do drop weights the floor won’t get damaged.
The optimal thickness of home gym flooring depends on the floor underneath. The ideal base is concrete or flag stone. These hard materials are sturdy and should also be completely flat. Floorboards are never recommended for a home gym because no matter how thick a top surface is, you can’t account for the weakness of the timber. Therefore, all recommendations here are based on a solid base.
Here’s what we recommend:
Functional fitness and free weights
If you have machines in your home gym and free weights, we recommend a flooring thickness of 30mm to 40mm. This refers to the thickness of the rubber flooring, of which we recommend interlocking rubber floor tiles.
It’s uncommon to require additional flooring thickness in a home gym, unless you perform deadlifts, or the dumbbells are over 40kg. In these areas, impact protection slabs are advisable. These can be up to 80mm thick and are necessary to protect the hard substrate (concrete, stone, etc.) from impact damage.
Heavy-duty rubber floor tiles of 30mm to 40mm will suit most home gyms. You can create a dedicated area for heavy work with impact protection slabs.
Yoga, pilates and HITT
The vast majority of home gyms will involve some weight work, which is why we always recommend rubber flooring as a universal choice. However, if you only perform yoga, pilates or HIIT (or similar workouts), foam flooring is what you want. It’s softer than rubber so it’s more comfortable and bouncier.
The foam flooring should be 9mm thick and no less. If it’s less than 9mm thick, it won’t provide a great deal of cushioning. 9mm is the golden thickness because it isn’t too bouncy, and it isn’t too firm. It’s just right.
If your home gym would benefit from rubber flooring, you can create a separate section with foam floor tiles. They lock together and can be moved around. But remember – they’re not suitable for heavy weight work on their own.