Frequently Asked Questions

Does Martial Art Mats Limited have ethical and moral standards including the avoidance of modern slavery and human trafficking?

Yes – see our statement Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement_Martial Art Mats Limited 2018

To help you decide what is the most suitable equipment for you, we have compiled the following list of questions and answers…

What is the best Judo Mat for my purposes?

In most cases we recommend the 2m x 1m x 40mm Club Judo Mat because it is the same quality as the Tatami Judo Mat but it is cheaper as it doesn’t have the more expensive tatami pattern on the surface.

Is the tatami patterned surface better than the other?

No, the wear resistance, grip and texture of both the leather look finish, and green/red tatami finish is the same as it is the same PVC material with just a different pattern on it.

Why pay extra for the tatami top surface?

Some people prefer the look of it, as traditionally Japanese floors were covered with tatami mats that had a woven soft rush straw surface, and this pattern is imprinted into the PVC top surface.

Why is the tatami surface more expensive?

The material is not as commercially available as the leather look finish which is used in general upholstery too.

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What about 1m x 1m x 40mm mats?

They are only half as slip resistant as the 2m x 1m x 40mm as they are only half the weight, but are more suitable for children to put out. These aren’t recommended for adults to train on because they will slip on the floor too much unless they are wall to wall or have some means of preventing the edge mats from moving.

Do some areas need a single 1m x 1m x 40mm mat to complete the area?

Yes, certain areas will. You can draw this out on paper with rectangles to see if you will need one, or just email us and we’ll work it out for you.

Are Jigsaw Mats as good as Judo Mats?

There are pros and cons.


They are much lighter, so easier for kids to get the mats out.
You don’t get gaps between the mats as they fit together.
You have red one side and green the other, so can change the colour layout whenever it suits you.


The surface of the Jigsaw mat is “slippier” and more abrasive (more prone to giving friction burns).
It won’t absorb the shock of heavy throws as well as the Judo Mats, and they will bottom out i.e. only absorb part of the force of the person hitting the mat, when the foam doesn’t compress anymore and the force remaining is transmitted through the body of the person, it can potentially lead to injury.

How hard are your Judo Mats?

We combine cushioning with hardness to absorb impact, and make breakfalling enjoyable for novices and advanced martial artists but firm enough to give the required support and not bottom out on heavy throws such as maki komis as well as offering minimal surface deflection when turning preventing rotational wear and injuries on joints, ligaments and tendons that softer mats may cause.

How is the top surface attached to the foam?

Our mats are bonded, with non solvent glue, to give a smooth surface to prevent tripping, and give a longer life.

The bonding laminator used reduces manual handling and uses a 2 part non solvent glue system giving a healthier work environment for employees as well as it helping gain certification for ISO 14001.

Why do the mats have welded corners?

Welding the corners after they have been bonded gives them extra strength, enabling them to last longer.

How does your anti-slip also prevent foam crumbling?

Our mats have the latex or cellular (waffle) rubber on a reinforced base giving them a longer life. (Mats without this tend to start crumbling underneath and need replacing within a few years)

Are the mats totally slip proof?

No mats from any supplier or manufacturer are slip proof unless permanently secured in place with a border. Some small amount of movement is to be expected, depending on the “slippyness” of the floor and how much the mats are being used.

It is the responsibility of the instructor and students to push the mats back together when a gap occurs. The cellular / waffle base on Contest Judo Mats offer more slip resistance than the latex base. 2m x 1m x 40mm mats are twice as slip resistant as 1m x 1m x 40mm mats!

Can the mats be used for other activities?

They are ideal for all martial arts, gymnastics and many other sporting activities.

What’s does 14lb/ft3 (230kg/m3) foam mean?

It is the density of the foam that makes the core of the mat i.e. It is this that is covered with the PVC one side and anti-slip another. For those of you who have seen different conversions, here is the calculation to prove 230 kg per cubic metre equals 14lb per cubic foot – to convert kilograms into pounds 230 x 2.2 = 506 , to convert cubic metres into cubic feet 1 foot = (12 x 25.4 / 1000) = 0.305 metres, 1 cubic foot = 0.305 x 0.305 x 0.305 = 0.028 cubic metres, so 506 x 0.028 = 14.17lb/ft3, which we just round down to 14lb/ft3 because it is easier to say.

Is the density of foam an accurate description of its quality?

It is essential to have the correct blend of density, hardness and impact absorbing properties as ours do for the correct deflection of the surface when standing, moving, throwing or falling on to the mat.

When the surface deflects too much you can’t slide across the mat as easily, and when your are turning your toes can dig into the mat more, potentially causing twisting injuries to toes, ankles, knees, hips and up into the spine. Some of these are accumulative injuries that will cause more wear and tear on joints, ligaments and tendons, some will be more instant injuries.

How does your foam create the right blend of surface hardness for minimal deflection but gives the correct cushioning to absorb heavy breakfalling as well as being suitable for beginners?

Our foam is made from the “trim” of bedding foam to give the ultimate performance. It is combustion modified which also gives the properties of better shock absorption as well as less surface deflection.

The foam is deep enough and firm enough to give the required support and not bottom out on heavy throws as well as offering minimal surface deflection when turning preventing rotational wear and injuries on joints and surrounding areas that softer mats can cause.

Why don’t other suppliers use the same foam?

It is more expensive, and just quoting the density makes it look the same, but it doesn’t perform as well or last as long and has potential for rotational injuries.

Are your mats environmentally friendly?

Yes, the foam we use is 100% reconstituted. It is made from the trim (the left over bits) from bedding foam. We also use a non solvent adhesive for bonding the surface cover to the foam which helped our manufacturers gain certification for ISO 14001.

How do you sell mats that are cheaper than everyone else’s, when they are better?

We keep our costs down by having an online store, and manufacturing to order, so we have no expensive office and warehouse costs.

What are your delivery times?

Due to us manufacturing to order as well as stocking, our delivery times vary from next day delivery to 3 weeks depending on the products and quantities. We can generally improve our lead times if you require sooner, please ask.

Who uses these mats and what for?

These mats are used by everyone from complete beginners to international martial artists. They are used at club, regional, national and international training and competitions as well as for control and restraint purposes as used by the Police, Prison and Special National Health Services, Schools, Colleges, Universities, Leisure Centres, Sports Centres, Private Clubs and many more.

What else affects the mat performance?

The surface and the undercarriage.

A slippier surface, like a highly polished one will cause more slippage and we recommend our Contest Judo Mats with the more anti-slip base.

The composition of the floor i.e. what lies beneath the surface: A floor with a semi sprung or fully sprung undercarriage will give more support to uki when he is thrown onto the mat as the springs under the floor will absorb some of the shock.

How many 2m x 1m mats do I need?

If you want the main area to be green and an outer 1m safety border of red mats, then:

14m x 14m area requires 80 green mats and 18 red mats, giving an 8m x 8m centre area and an extra 2m safety area beyond the red mats

12m x 12m area requires 54 green mats and 18 red mats, giving an 8m x 8m centre area and an extra 1m safety area beyond the red mats

10m x 10m area requires 32 green mats and 18 red mats, giving an 8m x 8m centre area

8m x 8m area requires 22 green mats and 10 red mats, giving a 4m x 4m centre area

8m x 8m area with no safety border requires 32 green mats

How much does each mat / trolley weigh? (Weights given are approximate)

2m x 1m x 40mm Judo Mats weigh 18kg
1m x 1m x 40mm Judo Mats weigh 9kg
1m x 1m x 40mm Jigsaw Mats weighs 3kg

10’ x 5’ x 12” Crash Mat (Safety Mattress) weighs 38kg
8’ x 4’6” x 12” Crash Mat (Safety Mattress) weighs 27kg

8’ x 4’6” x 8” Crash Mat (Safety Mattress) weighs 18kg

8’ x 4’ x 8” Crash Mat (Safety Mattress) weighs 16kg

6’ x 4’ x 8” Crash Mat (Safety Mattress) weighs 12kg
6’ x 4’ x 4” Crash Mat (Safety Mattress) weighs 6kg

Atlas 25 Heavy Duty Mat Trolley weighs 35kg
Super 42 Heavy Duty Mat Trolley Weighs 40kg
Super 60 Heavy Duty Mat Trolley Weighs 60kg

Can I pay by bank transfer or cheque?

Yes, please email and we will email you back with bank transfer details. Or make a cheque out to Martial Art Mats, and post to 10 South View, Lower Withington, Macclesfield, Cheshire, SK11 9DZ.

Do you have a continuous improvement policy?

Yes, please email with any comments you have, good or bad!

Do you supply other sizes of mats and replacement covers and foam for crash mats?

Yes. We supply many other sizes, our website just shows a small selection. Email with your requirements.

Does bending the mats affect them?

Yes, this affects all mats that have surfaces bonded to foam, whether they are ours or any other make. It causes delamination, which means the glue that is holding the top and bottom surface to the foam core is weakened and eventually the surfaces will not be fully stuck to the foam core.

Mat trolleys help increase the life of mats as it reduces the amount of handling, where there will always be some bending and flexing of the mat, and it reduces the amount of distance they might be dragged along the floor.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us by


phone 0800 87 86 007 where our friendly and experienced team will be glad to help using our combined experience of martial arts training, competing and teaching, mat manufacturing and student sports committees.

Mobile 0776 968 0900 to speak directly to John Meltzer