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Treadmills already produce a good amount of noise, but have you ever been on a squeaky one in an otherwise calm and peaceful gym, and all you can hear is the sound of yourself running?
That’s what it feels like when you’re not using a treadmill mat.
Noise-reduction keeps your mind on the prize and burning those calories, but a loud and aggressive-sounding treadmill can be distracting to the point that you don’t even remember how focused you were (if at all) on your workout.
To combat that, we’ve reviewed the five best treadmill mat brands and models on the market, giving you a handful to choose from after going through dozens of sub-par products to find you the very best ones.
These help reduce noise as well as stabilize a shaky treadmill, and depending on any issues you might have with your tread, this could help save you on maintenance costs down the road.
It’s an inexpensive, excellent addition to your home gym, and if you have a treadmill, chances are you need one.
Best Treadmill Mat
Motiontex Fitness Equipment Mat
Motiontex makes treadmill mats for carpets, hardwood, or tile, thanks to the durable rubber design behind their best-selling lineup.
Crafted out of a non-absorptive rubber material, sweat that drips to the floor won’t get sucked up into it and create a faint odor.
Gyms, whether they’re in-home or external, can get pretty ripe from a few solid workouts.
All that moisture from the humidity in the room and the sweat dripping to the floor could be problematic for bacterial growth.
Thankfully, Motiontex made this mat completely antimicrobial to prevent the growth of bacteria.
Easy to clean, durable, and 1’8” thick to help provide fantastic traction for your treadmill: there’s no downside here.
You have six sizes to choose from, each with their own unique dimensions to accommodate bigger treadmills or general fitness equipment areas.
If you’re laying this down on hardwood with a goal to eliminate scratches from cropping up, that’s exactly what Motiontex does.
Many users get nervous at how thin this pad is, but with its anti-tear design, it keeps your treadmill in place.
No jittering, no sliding off the mat, and no more damaged floors.
Sunny Health & Fitness Exercise Equipment Mat
Sunny Health & Fitness actually makes one of my favorite exercise bikes, so it’s no wonder that they’d make an all-around exercise mat to be used for those and treadmills.
First, I have to tip my hat to the way they designed the durability on this thing.
Made out of EVA foam with a waterproof design, any liquid just slides right off the top.
That means sweat isn’t going to build up, because you can just bring this over to your tub and hose it off to clean the mat 100%.
As the best treadmill mat for carpet thanks to that EVA foam, it’s built with a pretty thick shell of 1/7th of an inch on the smaller models, and up to ¼th of an inch on the larger mats.
I put this at the second spot on this list, despite being a little cheaper than Motiontex, because it’s not as good on tile.
It works on carpet and it’s decent on hardwood, just not the cream of the crop.
Being slip-proof and waterproof is a lot, especially for the fair price they’re asking.
If you’re running a small gym, these would be one of the best economic decisions you could make for your business.
For home, Sunny Health & Fitness protects your floors from scratches and harm (don’t want to affect that resale value).
BalanceFrom GoFit High Density Treadmill and Exercise Bike Mat
We’re slipping into the more budget-friendly choices here, and chief among them is the GoFit mat by BalanceFrom.
With this mat, you get a blend of rubber and high density foam, which helps cut down on the costs without reducing the traction.
This works great on carpeted areas, just like you’d expect an all-rubber mat to work on carpeting.
However, it’s the best mat for carpet only. I wouldn’t use this on hardwood.
If you go through to the sales page, you’ll see a video where they demonstrate it on a hardwood floor.
I personally have a 200 lb NordicTrack T Series treadmill, and that heavy steel beast moves a bit when I’m on a 7 speed.
For more lightweight treadmills, it may work better on hardwood.
Even when I used it with my NordicTrack, it definitely held its own in terms of vibration reduction.
That kills a lot of the noise, and for that, it made it onto this list. The whole mat is also primarily non-absorptive.
I say primarily because it does retain a hint of discoloration even after you wipe it dry from sweat, but that fades pretty quickly.
BalanceFrom is going to give you a two-year warranty with your purchase (with no registration required), as well as a very open and friendly line of customer support that knows exactly what they’re doing.
ProSource Fit Treadmill & Exercise Equipment Mats
When I was looking at the best treadmill floor mats, I just saw roll-out mats (which there’s nothing wrong with).
But my curiosity was piqued when I saw that ProSource also had a foldable mat as an alternative option for their line of exercise mats.
It’s a bit more rigid and the price is a little higher, but it was what I went with.
Both gym mats are made out of a waterproof synthetic material. It’s not quite foam, and not quite rubber.
I would say that this is good on hardwood as well as carpeting, but on tile it still seems to slide a bit.
One of the main draws is that whatever synthetic they used is extremely easy to clean, which is a bonus when you have to clean sweat off of it after every single use.
Both of the available mat sizes are pretty large and keep that inexpensive price point.
Even if you get a large mat, it’s still going to run about half the cost of some of these other ones.
One of the other materials associated with this is PVC, which is a type of plastic.
What that means is over time, sweat might stain it and reduce that bit of a finish it has to it right now.
That’s not really a big deal since it’s a functional piece, but if you’re planning on keeping your gym as aesthetically pleasing, this might be something you have to switch out in a few years when it becomes noticeable.
Zacro Protective Exercise Treadmill Mat
Zacro isn’t a name you hear often, but their mat for under treadmill feet is basically one of the most cost-effective ways to get a large amount of coverage.
I’m not entirely sure why they bother to include a lanyard with D-rings as an add-on, but it doesn’t hurt to keep it (I use mine to strap the stand-up rowing machine to my smith machine so it doesn’t tip over).
This mat is pretty unique, because Zacro uses a blend of textured rubber as well as cotton.
It means that the material will absorb some sweat, which is something big to consider.
If you don’t want to clean this off or rinse it out every few workouts, and I can’t blame you for that, then this is not the best treadmill mat for you.
Based on what you get for the price, you could put Zacros underneath all of your home gym machines without taking too much of a hit to the wallet.
The textured rubber gives you excellent traction on hardwood and tile, and on carpet, this is practically like glue until you simply lift it straight up if you need to remove it.
Treadmill Mat Buying Guide & FAQ
What to Look for in a Treadmill Mat
You’re going to see a lot of rubber, which is naturally waterproof, as well as different degrees or PVC, EVA foam and cotton.
The goal here is to have a material that absorbs vibrations, maintains traction, and gives you enough coverage on the edges of your treadmill that your sweat isn’t soaking the floor.
Thankfully, all the materials I just listed are very inexpensive to manufacture, so you won’t have to shell out a lot to get your hands on them.
Most treadmills have a very narrow margin of production size.
The treads rarely ever exceed 14-17” in width, but the sides of the treads can vary in width.
You also have to account for track/tread length, and if there’s a backing to your tread or if it just runs and drops off.
There are a lot of variables, but thankfully, there are a lot of treadmill mat sizes out there.
Check with most manufacturers, even the ones on this list, and you’ll see that their sales pages have between two and six sizes for you to choose from.
This impacts the price; the larger the mat, the more money you’ll have to pay.
Treadmills get noisy. Whether the belt is wearing down or they’re simply scraping against the motor housing, there’s always a maintenance problem to be had.
That doesn’t mean your treadmill isn’t going to work, but sometimes it’s not viable to fix that scraping or whirring sound. Sometimes it’s unnecessary, because if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.
Treadmill mats absorb shock and vibrations, which in turn reduces the noise created between your treadmill’s bottom and the floor.
This is probably the biggest reason that people shop for treadmill mats.
This is most of the reason that you’re buying a treadmill mat in the first place.
You need a way to stabilize your treadmill, and regardless of whether you have hardwood, tile, or carpeted floors, you need solid traction to help keep your treadmill from skidding across the floor.
The vibrations alone from running or walking fast on a treadmill can gradually reposition your treadmill, especially if you’re using a higher setting, such as the 10 MPH cap that most treadmills have.
You’re going to sweat (at least, if you’re using your treadmill correctly).
There’s no better feeling than when that first drop of sweat rolls off of your nose and hits the treads or the floor, because that means you’re in the thick of it.
However, you don’t want to have to clean up a treadmill mat by taking up all the available space in your washing machine.
Waterproofing is important, and usually comes with rubber floor mats.
Do I Need a Treadmill Mat?
I wouldn’t use a treadmill without one.
This is something that manufacturers should be including with their treadmills, because after looking at the details of why they’re necessary, it’s alarming to think that anyone would use one without a mat.
A treadmill noise reduction mat doesn’t just function as a soundproof board beneath your feet: it’s also absorbing vibrations, which can shake and rattle your treadmill over time, loosening screws and components.
We’re talking about slow-moving, long-term damage, so it’s not something you’ll see right away when you’re using your treadmill.
The one benefit to running outside is that the ground is stable.
Unless there’s an earthquake, you know the ground is going to stay put and not move.
Treadmill mats even the playing field for treadmills because they emulate that strong and steady feeling of running on solid ground.
Your treadmill stops jittering around quite as much, and you can keep your workout consistent.
What is the Best Treadmill Mat for Hardwood Floors?
Zacro made one thick treadmill mat that just sticks to hardwood floors better.
This is because of the textured rubber that they use, but it does more than just keep your treadmill from making noise—it doesn’t move even if you’re running on a 10.
Vibrations don’t impact it the way that it might impact foam. Rubber is used to absorb shock, and Zacro does it well.
Do Treadmill Mats Reduce Noise?
That’s the primary reason to get them. Have you ever been on a noisy treadmill? It’s a nasty bit of business.
Nobody has fun on a noisy treadmill. These were popularized in two places: apartment buildings, and overcrowded gyms.
If you want to get fit while being indoors, a treadmill does the trick.
Unfortunately, your downstairs neighbor might not agree with it.
While these aren’t miracle items, the best treadmill mat can reduce a ton of noise because of the way rubber (the primary material used in treadmill mats) absorbs shock and sounds.
On top of treadmill mats, there are a few tips you can follow to help reduce noise alongside your new piece of gym gear. Those are:
- Use the Treadmill Barefoot: Quite simply, this reduced the impact on the treadmill. Skin is softer than the rubber and textile of your running shoes. This isn’t the most comfortable option, but it’s a way to reduce additional noise. You’ll be amazed at just how much notice your shoes were making versus what the treadmill was making.
- WD-40 The Belt: You use this all the time, for thirty-minute intervals day after day. Just like getting an oil change for your car, your treadmill needs some maintenance and TLC. While some treadmills use different movement methods, they all have working parts that need to be greased to avoid squeaking.
- Use an Incline: Think about your tread and the equipment it’s running on as a big door. The door scrapes against the floor every time you open it. How do you fix it? You raise the door so it can swing without making any noise. Your treadmill has a big axle running through it towards the front that can raise it up, meaning the treads aren’t scraping against any of the plastic/metal components on the bottom.
- Move Treadmill to Level Ground: If your treadmill isn’t on a level surface, the weight distribution of the entire machine will be off-kilter. That means your treads could be dragging on the motor housing even though there’s nothing wrong with the treadmill. You can get a small leveler for a couple of bucks, then hunt around a spot in your house to put the treadmill.
What is the Best Material for a Treadmill Mat?
Textured rubber is going to be your best bet. This is because it works on carpeting, hardwood, and even tiling.
Rubber acts like a temporary glue that, when pressed against a surface, builds unbelievable traction that mimics a bond. Rubber is always a good bet.
But what if it’s not an option?
Fortunately, it’s not the only viable pick.
You’re going to see a mix of EVA foam and cotton used with a lot of treadmill mats. It’s funny, because that’s actually what a lot of mouse pads are made out of (like the one on my desk right now), which is a pretty good frame of reference.
There’s no real difference between exercise equipment mats for carpet, and those designed for hardwood flooring.
They all have a very similar design, it’s just a matter of the quality and materials, and how they fare against hardwood or tile flooring.
I don’t know who’s setting up workout equipment on a tile floor, but hey, you never know.
The reason I mentioned EVA foam specifically and not just generic foam is because it’s actually one way to help cushion your treadmill.
When you come down with your feet and apply pressure to the treadmill with each step, it can put stress on the treadmill, as well as the floor.
With an EVA foam pad underneath it, everything is a bit cushioned, which can very minorly help reduce the stress on your joints.
I Went to a Gym and They Didn’t Use Treadmill Mats, Why?
When someone designs a gym, they take all of the machines they’ll be using into consideration.
You might notice that there’s a foam-type flooring or carpeting. That acts as a treadmill mat and absorbs shock from running.
On top of that, you might notice the commercial-grade treadmills that these gyms use.
These aren’t cheap, and often come with stabilization gear built right into the treadmill.
You have to think that if you have thirty treadmills that are all being used at the same time, then you’re going to hear a lot of noise.
Most gyms account for this during construction and buying equipment, though you might still run into some gyms that do use treadmill mats because the floors are wearing down.
Muffle the Noise From Your Treadmill
Treadmills can be noisy, but it shouldn’t stop you from getting in a good workout.
Use a treadmill mat to reduce that noise and get back to your cardio.
If you’re using a home gym early in the morning and don’t want to wake your significant other, this is an absolute must-have gym tool.