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Thread: Gym flooring...what to use?

  1. #1
    Moderator Brian Hopper's Avatar
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    Gym flooring...what to use?

    I am planning on putting a small gym in my garage and was wondering what I should use for the flooring. I do plan on getting those thick 3/4" mats from Tractor Supply, but will that be enough for deadlifting? I was thinking about adding some thick sheets of wood underneath and the mats on top, but not sure if thats going to be overkill or not. Let me just add that my wife will kill me if I destory the floor, lol. I also don't drop the weights from waist high either so that would help, but im sure over time it will get f**ked up. Any input and advice would be greatly appreciated, thanks!!!
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  2. #2
    Wannabebig Member
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    Id recommend adding a few sheets of plywood under the matting. Good article that we followed for our gym is at the bottom of this page: http://www.elitefts.com/documents/home_gym.htm

    The mats are pretty well indestructable, but my only fear would be cracking the concrete. The wood will solve this problem. Total setup is pretty cheap, and will last forever.
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  3. #3
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    My floor is 2 sheets 3/4 inch C/D plywood set cross each other with 3/4 inch horse stall mat set rough side up screwed together. this is about indestructable.

    Don't use particle board unless you won't be dropping heavy weights on it. I do have a section of floor that is 3 layers of 1/2 inch particle board criss crossed and horse mats on top. it has hold up well, but i wouldn't trust it to deadlift on. You will dent it.
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  4. #4
    illinois fattest lifter theBarzeen's Avatar
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    I agree with the above posters that wood under rubber mats is solid..... personally though, I prefer just some outdoor carpet over 2 layers of plywood. With a heavy deadlift or squat I can feel the rubber mats give a little and I don't like it. Rubber mats are good if you plan to do any olympic movements though.
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  5. #5
    Wannabebig Member
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    sorry about the multiple post, i think i fixed it. Barzeen, you ever have problems with denting the plywood? I originally had just outdoor carpet over my platform, but we started to get indentions where the weights would hit after a few sessions of heavy pulls. Maybe we just had some shitty wood though.
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  6. #6
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    Our deadlift platforms are pretty simple. I built a 4'x8' frame from 2x4s and lined it with plastic. I bought the plastic they sell to cover things for painting. Then I used the floor leveling stuff they used under hardwood floors. I poured that in the plastic and let it dry. Then I put two sheets of plywood on it, and the rubber mats on top of that. I had to cut the rubber mats, but that's pretty easy to do with a sharp utility knife.
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  7. #7
    Rob Schilke | GFX Designer thecityalive's Avatar
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    Stall mats.
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  8. #8
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    Stall mats over plywood is what we use. Real simple and works great. The only negative with the stall mats is when the humidity is real high here we sometimes have a sweating problem with the mats. Especially when the gym is real cold before we turn the heaters on. Being in a garage you may have to deal with that some. Other than that, they are great. That being said, Barzeen's suggestion is probably the best possible platform. But, over time it will beat up the plywood enough you'll have to re-do it. But it will last for quiet some time and be very stable.
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  9. #9
    illinois fattest lifter theBarzeen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zac Whalen View Post
    sorry about the multiple post, i think i fixed it. Barzeen, you ever have problems with denting the plywood? I originally had just outdoor carpet over my platform, but we started to get indentions where the weights would hit after a few sessions of heavy pulls. Maybe we just had some shitty wood though.
    After a year or so of pulling the plywood does get torn up..... so $15 later we just replace it. The little dents are fine, but after a while they can get pretty warped.
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  10. #10
    Strongman Tom Mutaffis's Avatar
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    I would recommend putting down plywood and then the stall mats on top, or layering the two. You can also make a simple 'lifting platform' with a couple of sheets of plywood and 1-2 stall mats.

    Also, if you have any old carpet laying around you may want to put that as a 'base layer' under the plywood/mats - this will cut down on the noise a little bit if you are going to be dropping weights.
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  11. #11
    Moderator Brian Hopper's Avatar
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    Thanks guys for your input!!!
    My Training Log
    My YouTube page
    Training by Tone Barbaccio
    New Dimensions Wellness & Education

    *************************
    Best geared meet @ 242
    1030SQ, 640BP, 685DL and 2355 total
    Best raw meet w/sleeves @ 242
    665SQ, 440BP, 727DL and 1815 total
    Best raw meet w/sleeves @ 275
    700SQ, 452BP, 722DL and 1874 total

    *************************
    Sponsored By:

    10/20/Life
    Vanilla Gorilla

  12. #12
    Wannabebig New Member
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    We had two layers of horse mats over ancient (1950s) garage concrete, and after several years, the floor did start to dent on one side.

    We then put 3/4" plywood between the two mat layers and that seems to have done the trick.

    At the same time I welded up an simple angle-iron frame to hold the stack in line, which is a great place to attach carabiners for banded pulls.

  13. #13
    Senior Member
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    I built my platform as follows

    4 sheets of 3/4in plywood. Cover them with stall mats then cover those in industrial carpet (staples around the bottom of platform with numatic staple gun.

    This has been super solid for quite some time.

  14. #14
    Senior Member jmccown's Avatar
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    I use the thick rubber stall mats from tractor supply. They do a great job.
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