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Old 03-16-2004, 12:57 PM   #1
Dojo: Aikido of Midland
Location: Midland Texas
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 1,652

I'm curious. Has anyone come up with an inexpensive way to build or make mats or has found a real reasonable place to buy them? I'm not talking about the fold up kind but rather building permanent ones. Prefer a canvas top.

Looking at the prices out there is scary.
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Old 03-16-2004, 02:55 PM   #2
John Tjia
Dojo: White Plains Aikido of Westchester
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 11
Shredded tires

When I was at the Park Slope Aikido dojo (Brooklyn, New York, Hal Lehrman chief instructor) 20 yrs ago, he went and found a place that shredded tires. The rubber pieces were small enough (and cheap enough) that you could lay down a 1"-2" pad over the floor, and then cover that with canvas, which was strung to the borders. It worked real well!
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Old 03-16-2004, 03:14 PM   #3
Dojo: Aiki Kenkyukai
Location: Indonesia
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 176
one of the dojos I've been to is a shoe factory.

They used shoe sole material for the mats.

pretty hot, but at least it's cheap.

The road is long...
The path is steep...
So hire a guide to show you the shortcuts
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Old 03-16-2004, 03:54 PM   #4
Brehan Crawford
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 45
Though I've never seen its innards, as I understand it our mat is made out of powdered rubber in large plastic bags with carpeting and canvas on top. It's a great surface and afaik the only maintenance it needs is to have the rubber raked around once a year or so as it tends to shift and make bumps and gutters over time.
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Old 03-16-2004, 04:25 PM   #5
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 241
Some people think by contacting foam companies that it would be cheaper. A good foam like the cross-linked oletex 40'x40'x2" can be more expensive than getting the zebra mats for the same area. If I come aross anything, I will post. Ideally, there should be a way to provide safe, comfortable flooring inexpensively but, it doesn't seem so.

Even if you find make-shift stuff for the floor, you still need to order a canvas large enough to fit over it which can run anywhere from $400-$1000 depending in size. So, its best to get the swain or sebra mats that do not have to be covered and should last a long time for the money.

If you are that hard up, you can salvage some old carpet and layer it up. I have to train on the ground from time to time and thats not fun. My experience with the zebra mats; they are great for break falls but killer on the knees for suwariwaza.


Last edited by ikkitosennomusha : 03-16-2004 at 04:32 PM.
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Old 03-16-2004, 09:28 PM   #6
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 768

This thread archived by Stickgrappler may be useful. Various ideas are discussed and the thread ends with step by step instructions for building a solution.

Good Luck!


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