Interlocking rubber gym tiles – For kids, babies, playrooms and gyms. Colorful and practical.
These soft foam tiles are perfect for exercise rooms and gyms, studios, and kids play rooms. They easily interlock, so installation is super easy, even for a novice DIYer. And, importantly, they are easy to move and remove (and they won’t damage the flooring underneath). Because they are Do-it-Yourself, they are one of the most practical and least expensive flooring options available.
Please note that this article may contain affiliate links. If you do have an interest in some of these tiles, you can click on most of the pictures to explore further.
The soft rubber foam tiles come in a variety of colors and styles from bright and colorful to wood grain and metal textures as well as more subtle and muted color palettes. They provide a great blend of comfort, durability as well as customization for different decor themes and different shaped rooms. And, they will help protect and reduce scratches in your hardwood floors.
Demand for these versatile soft tiles is on the rise, especially as hardwood flooring is on the rise, and most parents want and need a soft surface for their kids.
The material is soft and comfortable. They have the right amount of cushioning for play time and exercise. Because it’s shock absorbing, it lessens fatigue for long periods of time standing or sitting. (In fact, it also perfect if you are using a standing desk).
These cushiony tiles are made from EVA foam for softness and durability
What is EVA foam?
EVA stands for Ethylene Vinyl Acetate. It’s a soft, yet durable polymer used in flooring. And, it’s the same material that’s used in those colorful flip-flops because it’s soft, easy on your feet and doesn’t absorb water.
As an added bonus, EVA foam also absorbs noise. And, these squishy tiles are super easy to clean. Because they have low water absorption, these soft foam tiles hold up to spills, wet feet, and messy pets. And, EVA is non toxic and BPA free.
Another advantage is that no adhesive is needed as the tiles are held down naturally by their weight and the interlocking creates stability so they don’t slip across the floor.
Soft Rubber Foam Kids – Alphabet and numbers
10 Advantages of soft foam rubber gym tiles
2. Soft on your feet – Reduces fatigue, allowing for longer play time (or longer exercise time…or crawl time)
3. Adds safety – Less likely to have slip, falls and bruises.
4. Separates the play area – This is great for parents who want a confined area of toys and mess.
5. Easy to clean and waterproof
7. They add insulation – This can really help in the winter months
8. The tiles are super easy to install – you can do it yourself. (even the non handy person can put these together)..in fact, your toddler may be able to do this.
10. They protect your hardwood floors – These will help reduce scratches in you hardwood flooring.
Bonus: You don’t have to worry if your floor is uneven or sloped. The tiles are soft and forgiving, so unlike most hard surfaces which require an even/level floor, these soft tiles are very flexible and can work on floors that aren’t fully smooth or even.
Soft Rubber Foam Mats for kids
How to install soft foam tiles – a simple DIY job
Install is super easy – it just takes minutes. In fact, even a toddler can do most of this. For mats, no tools are even needed.
- Remove end pieces
- Lock tiles together in the pattern you would like
- When you reach a wall, measure the space and cut the tiles accordingly
- Use finishing edges where desired
Instructional Video – How to install soft foam tiles
Tools needed (if installing wall to wall)
Among the soft foam tiles from FlooringInc, each square has 2 end pieces. These are removable (or movable) pending on your desired shape and size. If you need to cut the foam tiles (for wall to wall installation), we recommend using the card board box that contains the tiles as the cutting surface (don’t cut on hardwood floors or carpet as you may damage these (or other flooring surfaces).
Soft foam EVA tiles vs Rubber gym tiles
Soft foam tiles are perfect for lightweight and body weight exercises as you have plenty of cushioning on your feet.and joints. These are a comfortable and very affordable option home gyms and play rooms.
Advantages of foam tiles for home gyms
- Less expensive than rubber flooring
- Waterproof and sweat resistant. Also holds up to spills.
- Fun, colorful and much lighter/brighter vs rubber flooring (which is typically black with some flecking). Note: While there are some options of colored rubber floors, they are extremely expensive (and often need to be ordered in very large quantities (e.g. 1000+ sq ft).
- Flexible and shock absorbent. Great for joints and less tiring (so you will exercise more)
- Great insulator (so this especially helps in basements where it can get colder, especially in the winter)
- Super easy to install (and easy to rearrange or move). Available in interlocking tile or mats. These are lighter and easier to install vs rubber (which is heavy and more challenging to cut).
Foam tile disadvantages for home gyms
- Will dent under heavy equipment. The soft cushioning is great for your body, but it doesn’t hold up so well with heavy weights. You may consider adding a rubber mat for these areas.
- Less durable than rubber flooring. Foam tiles are cheaper and less dense than rubber. They will hold up well for typical workouts, but rubber will definitely last longer. The best uses for soft foam tiles are: stretching, yoga, light conditioning and body weight exercises.
Rubber tiles for home gyms
Rubber flooring is a great solution for home and commercial gyms. Rubber flooring is meant for the serious gym user and professional athletes. It’s highly durable and built to support heavy cardio equipment including treadmills, stair machines and ellipticals. Rubber flooring will also support your weights and heavy barbells.
Rubber flooring is available in tiles and rolls, as well as mats. You can also choose to add additional mats (on top of rubber flooring) for extra support and give. These could be used in stretching areas or underneath exercise equipment
Most rubber flooring is available is 3 thicknesses – 1/4″, 3/8″ and 1/2.” 3/8″ is considered the standard. Obviously, as you go thinner, the price will decrease, and as you go thicker, it will increase (and give you more support.
Advantages of rubber tiles
- Durable – Will hold up extremely well with heavy exercise equipment and the serious gym user
- Extra insulation (as well as sound absorption). This will especially help if your gym in over concrete and/or in a basement).
- Easy to install – Rubber is available in simple DIY tiles as well as lower cost rolls. While rolls are less expensive, please note that they are heavy and more challenging to install. There are definitely trade-offs between the two.
- Easy to clean – wipe it down and you’re all set. Note: I’d recommend choosing black with flecks rather than black only. Trust me…from experience, the black only shows dirt and water marks more.
Rubber flooring disadvantages
- Very and surprisingly heavy – These are more challenging to carry and install.
- Doesn’t insulate as well as soft foam – The extra air pockets in the foam trap air more and keep the space a bit warmer.
- Cost more than soft foam tiles
Rubber flooring is best for:
- Weight lifting and heavy weights that may be stored
- Heavy exercise equipment
- Plyometric movements
Video: How to install rubber flooring
Where to buy soft foam rubber tiles
The two best places I’ve found for buying soft foam tiles are Amazon and FlooringInc. They are both very reasonably priced and have a variety of options for squares and mats. Amazon seems to have more options for kid mats and patterned ones; FlooringInc seems to have more variety on the individual colors (and a bit more flexibility on ordering quantities. But, they both have excellent options and the prices can’t be beat.
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Soft rubber gym tiles | Colorful and interlocking Squares | Anti-fatigue and DIY