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I’ve been working out to various home workout programs such as Focus T25 and Tapout XT for a while now and have been using a cheap, thin workout mat purchased in a local store.The thin mat combined with a hard floor wasn’t ideal.
With these workouts the one problem I had was with some of the plyometric exercises that gave me some discomfort in my knees. This required me to modify the exercises.
So I thought it was about time to invest in a quality workout mat so I could get more out of my workouts.
I thought I would share my research with you for the Best Type of workout mat I could find for Insanity, T25, P90X and other home fitness programs.
Here is what I was looking for;
I didn’t care what the mat was called fitness mat, yoga mat or plyometric mat, my top priority was the thickness of the mat to reduce the stress on my knees during jumping or plyometric exercises. A mat that also cushioned my elbows, hips and spine was an added bonus. I have had enough of gritting my teeth while performing plank exercises because of the pain in my arms on the hard floor.
A Long Mat
I was looking for a mat that was longer than the length of my body. In addition to this I wanted it to be fairly wide.
I don’t mind investing in a product if I get good use out of it. I don’t expect my workout mat to last for ever but I also don’t want it falling apart after a few uses.
All the exercise mat brands, describe their products as great products but I want feedback from real users. So I make sure that I check out as many online reviews as I can before purchasing so I can get a good feel for how the product is thought of by real customers.
It actually didn’t take me long to find what I was looking for……
Best Exercise Mat for Insanity & other Home Workouts
Hands down the winner for the Best Exercise mat was the Pogamat and it actually exceeded my expectations.
As I mentioned I wanted a mat that was both thick and long and ideally wide as well.
These are the dimensions for the Pogamat XL Cardio Mat;
7 Feet long X 4 Feet wide and 1/4 inch thick.
Well I’m a fair bit under 7 feet tall as I imagine you are but even if you are over 6 feet you should have no issues with the length of this mat. So all in all it met my first criteria and exceeded the dimensions I needed.
We will cover customer reviews and feedback next but what I did like about Pogamat is that not only do they say this is a ‘quality product’ they back up their claim with a lifetime guarantee.
Customer reviews I checked out a lot of reviews online, nearly 400 in all, so I have saved you a bit of time.
Many of the users had purchased the mat specifically for use with programs like Insanity, Turbofire and similar DVD workouts and were pleased with the workout mat. They used it both barefoot and with shoes and there were no real issues with either though one customer did mention that you should be careful not to turn your ankle if you suffer from a weakness already.
I had a fairly narrow vision as I was looking for a mat to use solo for my Insanity workout but other people were working out as a couple and some had their kids playing on the mat while they worked out….I’m not sure if I could do that!
Other customers were using it for kettlebell and weights workouts, as play-mats for their kids and one was even using it for a play area for a Virtual Reality set up…How cool is that!
It was mentioned that it wasn’t that portable, you couldn’t really take it to yoga classes with you. But it did fold up easily and could be stored out of the way when not in use, it also has straps that hold it in place.
The majority of user reported that the Pogamat doesn’t have the bad odour that many mats have when they are first delivered. It was also described as very easy to clean.
Living on the ground floor I don’t have to worry about neighbors complaining if I am jumping about doing burpees and plyometrics but this was another reason why some reviewers had purchased it, so they didn’t annoy the people living below them.
The only real issue that might put some of you off from buying is the price. Because of its quality, lifetime guarantee and it extra large size it does come at a premium price but I think you have got to look at it as an investment in your health.
Pogamat Video Review
If it is out of your price range I totally understand and I have a couple of other top picks that while for me they don’t match up to the Pogamat they would be a good second choice.
Budget Priced Inexpensive Large Exercise Mats
We looked at what other mats were getting good reviews and customers were using for Insanity and we found a couple of good picks
Rolling Sands Extra Wide, Extra Long, Extra Thick Workout Mat
This mat is pretty close to the pogamat in dimensions, just not as wide.
The dimensions for this mat are;
84″ X 36″ X 1/4″
Users have described it as ‘Perfect for Insanity’ and found it provided them with shock absorption and enough space on the mat to carry out the moves.
A couple of users mentioned that the mat is getting a little scuffed up after repeated use, especially when they have been doing P90X wearing shoes but it doesn’t take away from the functionality of the mat.
The nice thing about this mat is that you can buy a separate bag to transport it in, if you want to take it to classes. If you buy the mat and the bag it still comes in well under the price of the Pogamat alone.
Square36 Large Cardio Mat
Square 36 are the main competitors to Pogamat and specialize in extra large workout and yoga mats. You can see their whole range if you want something even larger by Clicking Here
Let’s start off with the dimensions;
6.5ft x 4ft and 7mm thickness
This mat also comes with a storage bag which the Pogamat didn’t have and the Rolling Sands mat you had to pay extra for.
Reading through reviews online it seems many reviewers were using it for Beachbody workouts such as Core de Force, Insanity, P90X and Hammer and Chisel. It was mentioned that it protected the knees from too much impact and also reduced the overall noise, especially if they had hardwood floors. One guy with back problems who worked out to Insanity said they he could now work out without the backpain.
The only minus seems to be if you sweat a lot it can be a little slippery for your hands. Once the mat is worn in a bit this shouldn’t be an issue but it might be worth getting some gloves in the meantime
If these two mats are still out of your price range or you have a small space to work out in and require a mat not so long long then here are some more recommendations
Beachbody Core Comfort Mat
This is designed for all Beachbody workouts but really is mean’t for core exercises and will be a little short for some of the other exercises.
Its dimension are;
24 inch x 40 inch and 1.5cm thick
It’s certainly better than using a standard yoga mat but because it is fairly short you won’t be able to perform the full range of exercises for most home workouts on it.
This is designed specifically for core exercises but if you want to take a look….
Beachbody Premium Yoga Jump Mat
Similar to the Beachbody core comfort this mat is designed specifically to protect the back, knees and joints when carrying out some of the more vigorous home workout exercises.
Dimensions for this mat are
71” x 26” and 1/4 inch thick
This is a good length and a nice thickness but this one really does get some mixed reviews that aren’t all good! While Beachbody are known for their quality products I’d describe this one as adequate. If it was a bit wider it would have got better feedback in my opinion.
Hopefully amongst my picks you have found the best workout mat for your specific needs whether that be its dimensions or its price. Look at this as an investment in your health and fitness and if you are going to take these tough workouts seriously you are going to want the right equipment.