Owning an exercise bike has many benefits. Not only can you exercise in the comfort of your own home, but you’re also able to create a workout schedule that’s perfect for you, depending on how busy you are.
As with most equipment and gadgets today, once you buy it you also have to purchase accessories to enhance the experience.
With exercise bikes, one of these accessories is a bike mat. But is it really crucial? Do you need a mat under an exercise bike?
A quick answer would be yes; you need a mat for your indoor trainer. While you can get away with not having one, you’ll only regret not buying it sooner.
A mat offers hygiene and safety benefits and could also make your indoor bike last longer.
Stationary Bikes and Your Floor
While having a stationary exercise bike is pretty cool, it might be bad news for your floor.
Indoor cycling bikes can scratch your floors and leave some ugly marks.
You may not have to worry about this if you’re using your bike on concrete flooring. But you still have to think about getting the floor dirty. You’ll have an additional task of doing extra cleaning once you’re done cycling.
When you think about it, it’s too much trouble. You don’t want to deal with a dirty or damaged floor, hence the need for exercise bike floor mats.
Can You Put a Spin Bike on a Carpet?
A carpet is pretty much the same as an equipment mat, right? It means your bike won’t slide around or scratch your floor, sure. .
However, you still don’t want sweat, bike lubricants, or anything else getting to your carpet. An indoor bike trainer could also leave an imprint on the carpet.
So even though you’ll be using your exercise bike on carpet, I still highly recommend having an indoor bike mat.
Why You Need a Mat Under Your Exercise Bike
An indoor bike trainer mat has several benefits. Here’s why you should seriously consider getting one.
Exercise bikes aren’t completely silent, and some of them may even be too noisy for you to ride comfortably (depending on the model, and the environment that the bike the situated in). The noise can be annoying for you, and a bother to your neighbors, especially if you live in an apartment. You don’t want to be ‘that’ upstairs neighbor!
A mat absorbs the vibrations and dampens the noise, making for a quieter session. You can work out any time of day or night without having to worry about disturbing your neighbors.
Enjoy Better Stability While Exercising
Sometimes, when you’re exercising, you may notice that the bike is rocking too much. This is more likely to happen when you are training hard, and pumping the peddles fast and hard.
A mat under your indoor cycling bike gives you a little more stability so you can enjoy a smoother ride.
Prevent Your Bike from Sliding Around
Indoor bikes can move a lot when you’re riding, especially with high-intensity rides and on a smooth slippery surface.
The constant slipping and sliding can be annoying and distracting when you’re trying to focus on your training.
An equipment mat gives your bike a grippy surface to sit on and will prevent sliding. With a good one, you can make your sessions as intense as you like and the bike will stay firmly in place.
Protect Your Floor from Damage
Exercise bikes aren’t lightweight. They are heavy bits of kit that will leave marks or scratches when you move them around, or when they shift while you’re exercising.
Nobody wants scratches on their floor and repairs cost money too. If you’re renting you may end up losing your deposit if you damage the floor.
An exercise bike mat saves you from all these problems.
With carpeted floors, you don’t have to worry about scratches but the exercise bike could still leave an imprint.
Keeps Sweat from Getting to Your Floor
You can’t avoid sweating when riding your spin bike or recumbent bike. Even though you don’t sweat a lot, a few drops will still make it to the floor.
You’ll be stuck wiping off sweat from the floor after every session.
Your carpet will absorb sweat so you won’t have to wipe it off. But the sweat is likely to leave stains. As it accumulates over time the carpet won’t be looking very well and it could also become smelly (gross!)
A mat under your exercise equipment will trap the sweat and ensure that your floor or carpet stays clean and dry.
Increases the Durability of Your Exercise Bike
Lastly, an exercise bike mat protects the exercise bike too. It will be sitting on a soft and stable surface so it won’t get damaged from too much shifting and sliding. Given what indoor cycling bikes cost, you’ll want yours to last as long as possible.
The Downsides of Having an Exercise Mat Under Your Bike
The main downside is that bike mats cost money. After buying an exercise bike plus other riding accessories, you’ll need to spend more money to get a good mat. Plus, if you have a cat, rubber mats may not last long at your house because they’ll enjoy chewing on them.
What Kind of Mat Should You Get for Your Stationary Bike?
It’s important that you get the best exercise bike mat for your situation. So you can’t just pick the first one you see.
First, equipment mats come in different sizes. Make sure you get the right size, big enough to accommodate your bike and have space around it.
You should also consider the type of flooring that you have–tiles, carpet, hardwood floor, etc. For instance, for tiles, a rubber mat would be more suited. Tiles are quite smooth and rubber mats are super grippy so there won’t be sliding.
For harder flooring, you should consider thicker foam mats as they work really well.
Can You Use a Yoga Mat As Your Exercise Bike Mat?
A yoga mat under your home gym equipment would work just as well as an exercise mat, right? I mean, they are anti-slip and can reduce noise too.
It may seem so but I wouldn’t recommend it. Yoga mats aren’t wide enough for recumbent bikes. They may not do a good job of preventing sweat drops from getting to the floor. Yoga mats are also thinner than indoor mats and they don’t absorb noise as well.
You’re better off buying a proper equipment mat for your exercise bike.
Do you need a mat under an exercise bike? Yes, you do.
It may seem like a small accessory that you can do without, but an indoor bike trainer mat is quite useful. It will protect your floor from getting scratched by the bike when you’re riding.
Bike floor mats also add stability. Sometimes indoor bikes can shift too much when you’re training hard. This is likely to happen on super smooth floors even with bikes that have rubber feet. Mats prevent sweat from getting to and potentially ruining your home gym flooring too.
Lastly, you need a good equipment mat to absorb noise so you don’t bother your neighbors while training.