Thoughts on mats

Discussion in 'Jujutsu / Judo' started by gpseymour, Aug 28, 2017.

  1. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

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    I'll take you up on that some day, DD. I have some bits of family out in the Aurora area, and may eventually make it out there to visit them. I'd love to find that I like those mats as well as some of the others. They're easy to store, and you don't end up with the toe-eating gaps most other mats have.
     
  2. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

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    What is the difference in feel between the Zebra mats you tried and the wrestling mats? Do you happen to know which Zebra mats they were? I've been on a few different Zebra mats, so it'd help me get a baseline.
     
  3. marques

    marques 3rd Black Belt

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    Some techniques where not performed exactly as they should be, up to good control. I don’t think it is the solution, but it (training throwings in concrete) can be a rich experience, especially for the ones training for self defence more than for art or sport.
     
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  4. Charlemagne

    Charlemagne Black Belt

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    The wrestling mats have more give. Plus, they come in a roll, so once they are taped together (or in some of them now, velcroed together) you don't have to worry about catching your toes in between the mats. The Zebra mats, along with the Fuji, etc. come in squares that are pushed up against one another. Even if they are tight, there is a chance that you can catch your toes in the gap.

    I got my wrestling mats from McBryde Mats, and I have been pretty happy with them. They are one of the few companies I found that had 2 inch wrestling mats, and I wanted the extra thickness for taking falls.
     
  5. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

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    I've found some mats that roll out (Dolamur and a couple of others have them) that are the same feel as the tatami-style mats. I definitely prefer the roll-out mats, both for leave-down application (taped in place) and temporary use (we just use velcro straps to hold them together, as the ones we use are carpet-topped). I go back and forth on using mats with more give. For grappling-only use, I do prefer it. Once we add in sparring, kicking, etc., I prefer the firmer mats.

    I remember looking into McBryde some time ago. They looked like good mats, and have both MA and wrestling versions, IIRC. They might have been the first ones I saw with the big roll-out mats.
     
  6. Hanshi

    Hanshi Orange Belt

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    Back when I opened my own dojo I put in a spring floor with a vinyl covered foam top. It is still in use in my old school - I sold my half of it to my partner who runs it now. But I have taken falls on about every surface there is, from tatami to a carpet over concrete. Since I taught judo, aikido and jujitsu, I emphasized falling techniques and spent a great deal of time drilling my students. I don't like the folding mats having broken an ankle on one many years ago. Nor do I care for carpet that much. Tatami is great as is a decent spring floor and some of the better foam mats. Being much older and with ra, I can not take any kind of fall though I still know how to. I have spent, as well as my students, much time throwing and falling outside on grass lawns; and that actually works out quite well. I also agree that mat burns and bruises are much preferable to injuries from lousy mats.
     
  7. Charlemagne

    Charlemagne Black Belt

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    Absolutely. Thankfully, if you get the right mats, you can avoid mat burns for the most part as well. That's another one of the things I did not like about the Fuji mats. I haven't had a single mat burn on my wrestling mat, but I had plenty when I trained at a school that used Fuji.
     
  8. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    One of the universities I worked at has a Judo team. At least once every semester, the teacher takes the group outside and has them roll. Beginners stay on the grass, everyone else starts on the grass then goes over to the parking lot.

    He was a great guy. The first time I saw him doing that I had no idea what was going on. He told me he ran the Judo club and said “How often are these guys going to get attacked in the dojo? If they can’t do it a few times outside the dojo, what’s the point?” He instantly earned my respect.
     
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  9. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

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    I had a chance to play on a sprung floor once. It was pretty nice even without mats (though easy to get bruised). With some firm mats to go on top, it would have been been heavenly.
     
  10. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

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    The tatami-surface (I'm assuming that's what the Fuji mats you're referring to had) gives better traction when sweaty, but will deliver amazing mat burns. I actually changed contact points on one of my sacrifice techniques when my instructor switched to tatami-surface mats.
     
  11. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I have always loved Swain and Zebra mats. I feel that they are the best with wrestling mats coming in next followed by puzzle mats. Grass is a great natural mat if you are training outdoors. Love training on grass.
     
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  12. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

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    I love grass on the right ground. There's an area in the city I grew up in where the grass and ground make a good (if firm) natural mat for training even reasonably high falls. In my current front yard, it's too soft (falls would be nice, but we'd all have ankle and knee issues). At my previous house, the ground, even under grass, was as hard as a hotel room floor.
     
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  13. donald1

    donald1 Senior Master

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    IMO, when you do throws on concrete long enough you eventually learn to appreciate mats...
     
  14. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

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    That usually happens after the first throw. Actually, usually just before it.
     
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  15. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    I would love to have some traditional wrestling mats. We just don't have any place to store them. Since we're at the Y, we can't leave stuff out between classes. So for us, the (extra thick) puzzle mats are the best compromise.
     
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