Beginner Gymnastics Mats Buyer's Guide
Rubber gym floor tiles


Just getting ready to start gymnastics or still working on the basics? You don’t have to spend an arm and a leg (umm, you need those for gymnastics!) on a fancy mat designed for the most advanced movements.

You can start your gymnastics practice simply with the right tools designed for beginners to help you get started.

From mats for basic tumbling to beginner’s teaching tools, we have a wide array of mats to help you take your first steps towards becoming the next Simone Biles. Or, you know, just taking up gymnastics as a hobby. Either way.



Safety is always a concern, but I think even more so when you’re just starting out.

The concern is either making sure your kids are safe or, starting as an adult, the fear of not being safe when you suddenly tackle these new gymnastics moves.

Have you ever attempted to learn gymnastics after the age of 10? It is so hard and so scary! Especially when you don’t have a good mat there to support you.

When learning things like handstands, cartwheels, front walkovers, etc., there’s bound to be spills and tumbles (not the good kind), but a safe, cushioned, shock-absorbent mat will be there to protect you.

All of our beginner’s mats are safe for beginning gymnastics movements. They are thick and durable enough to protect you from moves like handstands, forward and backward rolls, cartwheels, front and back walkovers, etc.*

Many of these mats are also appropriate for intermediate level movements like front and back handsprings.

*Note: Portable Exercise Mats are the exception. They should only be used for very basic movements.

DIY Gym Floor Tiles


When you’re just starting out, you want all the help you can get, right? Although most beginner’s level mats won’t do much in the way of help other than protect you (which is important!), there are plenty of accessories that you can check out to help you learn the basics.

A great start would be the combination of a Folding Mat + an Incline Mat or Balance Beam to help you practice your floor work, plus some extra skills.

If you’re learning at home and don’t have someone there to spot you, these extra tools can be especially helpful.

Easy Maintenance

No one wants to spend hours a day maintaining their mat. If you do, I have an entire house you can clean…

The truth is, we always seek ease and convenience, and that’s just what these mats offer. All of our mats and accessories have a smooth vinyl casing that makes them incredibly easy to clean with just a damp cloth or a traditional sanitizing product.

When you’re done with practice for the day, simply put the mat away. Each of these mats are very portable.


I mean, why not? You want a mat that’s fun and makes you want to take it out and practice and, for many of us, a little pop of color and pizzazz can do just that.

Check out all of the bright, vibrant color options you have to choose from for your beginner's mat.


As I mentioned, a really great setup is a traditional folding floor mat with the addition of a teaching tool (or two!). Here’s a look at what you have to choose from.

Folding Mats

This is your bare bones beginner’s mat. Although it is designed mostly for abs and floor exercises, they are a low-cost option for the very basics like forward and backward rolls.

For toddlers and small children learning the gymnastics basics, this mat is a great, affordable place to start.

So you need a little more than an exercise mat, but you’re not up to all the crazy tricks yet, and the idea of spending a lot of money on a mat gives you heart palpitations?

Our Eco Folding Mats are less dense than our traditional folding mats, and they don’t come in all the fancy colors, but they are an excellent, cost-effective choice if you don’t need the extra shock absorbency.

You can use these mats for beginning to intermediate gymnastics and martial arts. Kids love them for practicing forward rolls and cartwheels, and adults love how easy they are to put up in the closet when it’s time to move on to a new activity.

If you need a mat to protect you from beginning/intermediate level gymnastics (think up through front and back handsprings) and martial arts, these will be your go-to mat.

Just a little upgrade from out Eco Folding Mats, our traditional folding mats are a little more dense and provide that extra bit of shock absorption. Also, they’re colorful (but they also come in black if you’re not into the whole color thing).

Okay, I have a confession. I know I’m not supposed to play favorites, but I can’t help it. I just love this mat! The bright color choices including the rainbow (yes, rainbow!) option just steals my heart.

I’m of the opinion that the extra density, more durable vinyl and sweet color options make this mat the clear winner. They can sustain you a little bit further through your practice into more advanced movements, and they’re just as easy to store when you’re not aerial-ing your heart out.

For a vibrant, durable multi-level gymnastics and martial arts mat, our 4’x8’x2” Folding Mats are the cat’s pajamas (if you’re not up to date on 20s slang, that means they’re awesome).

These mats come in 14”, 15” and 16” high. They are a great tool for learning forward rolls, front walkovers and more.

These mats are more of a teaching tool than an all use mat. If you have a little one in gymnastics, they’re a great add on to the Folding Mat, but you may not want them as your only mat.

However, if you just have a kid that likes to play and have fun, and they don’t need the mat for at home practice, I can tell you first hand that kids love this mat. They can play, use it as a slide down from their toddler bed, play hide and seek behind it, you name it.

If you’re looking for a beginner’s teaching tool or just a mat for fun and games, the Incline Mat is definitely the way to go.

The dreaded balance beam! No matter how skilled a gymnast you are, everyone gets butterflies in their stomach when they first step on the balance beam. It is probably the scariest and most mentally challenging part of gymnastics.

Our foam Balance Beams are the perfect beginner training tool. Before they get up to the high beam, they can begin practicing on this approachable, low-to-the-ground foam beam. This way, when falls happen (because, when it comes to the balance beam, falls always happen), they’re only 2.5” off the ground.

For extra safety protection, place the foam Balance Beam on your Folding Mat so your little ones can fall safely to a soft surface, encouraging them to push themselves more and gain confidence.

Octagon Mats, like Incline Mats, are a teaching tool mat. They are an excellent add on for your Folding Mat.

These guys are an advanced beginner / intermediate teaching tool. They’re perfect for kiddos age 5-8 that have nailed basic tumbling like forward and backwards rolls, and are ready to step it up into backbends, front walkovers, etc.

These mats are great for extra practice at home, or for coaches to use as a teaching tool in the studio. They give young gymnasts the ability to practice without a constant spotter, allowing more kids to work at a time and the coach to reach more students.

If you’re looking for a beginning-intermediate teaching tool, the Octagon Mats are definitely the way to go.


Rubber Tiles Highlights
  • • Nontoxic
  • • Lightweight
  • • Easy to clean, transport and store
  • • Great for teaching beginning-intermediate movements


Rubber Tiles Limitations

• Kids outgrow them after about age 10

• Not suitable for advanced gymnastics

Ready to get started? Order your Portable Exercise Mat, Eco Folding Mat, 4'x8'x2" Folding Mat, Incline Mat, Balance Beam, or Octagon Mat today!