choosing the best gym flooring

Unlocking Success with the Right Surface: How to Choose the Best Gym Flooring


Choosing the best gym flooring is essential for creating a successful fitness facility, gymnasium, or sports complex. Installing the right flooring in a gym is not all about aesthetics. The right floor surface helps to enhance performance, prevent injuries, and provides a comfortable, safe, and pleasant environment for athletes and gym-goers.

With a wide range of gym options, choosing the right type of flooring is crucial. For example, is rubber gym flooring better than carpet tiles? What advantages does hardwood flooring have over installing a rubber surface? When does it make sense to install artificial turf in a sports facility?

This article will guide you through the process of running a successful gym by installing the right type of flooring for your facility. Whether the floor space is for aerobics, weightlifting, indoor sports, workouts, or yoga, you can unlock success by choosing the best gym flooring option.

Understanding the Needs of Your Gym

Choosing the right gym flooring starts with identifying the key activities in your gym. After all, gym flooring must withstand intensive use, varying humidity levels, sweat, and heavy equipment. 

For example, areas with heavy weights may require rubber floors to absorb impact, increase slip resistance, and ensure the surface is easy to clean. However, a dance studio or basketball court typically requires a hardwood maple floor with good shock absorption, resilience, and durability.

It’s also vital to assess high-traffic areas to minimize the effects of wear and tear on your gym flooring. This will help determine the level of durability required. For example, hard-wearing carpet tiles may be the best option for high-traffic areas where no sports activities occur. 

Also, consider any compliance and safety requirements set by industry standards and safety regulations. For example, ensuring the gym floor surface has adequate slip resistance can help prevent injuries, meaning you avoid potentially costly lawsuits. 

By understanding the needs of your gym, you can make an informed decision when choosing the best flooring option.

Exploring Types of Commercial Gym Flooring

Many different types of commercial gym flooring options are available, each with its pros and cons.

Some popular options include hardwood floors, rubber tiles, cork flooring, vinyl flooring, and foam tiles. It’s also important to consider factors such as shock absorption, durability, and ease of maintenance when choosing the best gym flooring for your space.

Let’s look at four popular floor options for sports and aerobic facilities.

Rubber Flooring

Rubber flooring is an excellent option for gym spaces. It is durable with excellent shock-absorbent properties. Several options are also available — rubber floor tiles, rubber mats, rubber rolls, and interlocking tiles. 

Here are the pros and cons of rubber flooring for commercial gyms:


  • Durability: Rubber flooring can withstand heavy foot traffic, dropped weights, and gym equipment. It’s resistant to wear and tear, making it a long-lasting option for high-traffic areas.
  • Shock Absorption: Its excellent shock-absorbing properties help prevent damage to the floor and reduce the risk of injury for gym users.
  • Noise Reduction: Rubber flooring dampens sound and vibration. This creates a quieter and more comfortable gym environment— which is vital for commercial gyms with multiple users.
  • Slip Resistance: Rubber provides good traction, minimizing the risk of slips and falls. This is especially crucial in areas where people may be sweating.
  • Low Maintenance: Rubber flooring is relatively easy to clean and maintain. Regular sweeping and occasional mopping are sufficient to keep the floor in good condition.


  • Cost: High-quality rubber flooring can be relatively expensive compared to other options. However, its durability and long lifespan often justify the initial investment.
  • Smell: Cheaper rubber flooring products can have a strong odor initially. This may require proper ventilation during installation.
  • UV Sensitivity: Some low-cost rubber flooring materials can degrade when exposed to direct sunlight or UV rays. 

Rubber flooring is a practical choice for high-traffic and high-impact areas. It comes in various options, such as rubber tiles, rolls, and mats, allowing customization to fit any gym space. 

Carpet Tiles

Carpet tiles are a popular option for gym flooring due to their versatility and ease of installation. They provide a comfortable and cushioned surface for floor exercises, making low-impact workouts a better experience.

What are the pros and cons of installing carpet tiles in a commercial gym?


  • Comfort: Carpet tiles offer a softer and more cushioned surface than hard flooring options like rubber or vinyl. This can be beneficial in areas where users may be doing stretches, warm-ups, or floor exercises. Additionally, they create a warmer environment and are ideal for walking areas of a gym.
  • Noise Reduction: Carpet tiles help reduce noise and echo, creating a quieter, more comfortable space for gym users.
  • Slip Resistance: Textured or low-pile carpet tiles provide good traction and reduce the risk of slips and falls.
  • Aesthetics: Carpet tiles come in various colors, patterns, and designs. Therefore, gym owners can create a visually appealing and inviting space.
  • Easy Replacement: A significant advantage of carpet tiles is that you can easily replace them without replacing the entire flooring.


  • Maintenance: Keeping carpet tiles clean in a gym environment can be challenging. Sweating, spills, and dirt can accumulate over time and become engrained in the flooring.
  • Odors and Allergens: Carpet tiles can trap odors and allergens like dust and pollen. This may make them impractical for people with allergies or sensitivities.
  • Staining: Spills and stains on carpet tiles can be challenging to clean and may leave a permanent mark on the flooring.
  • Moisture Absorption: They are impractical for areas where heavy sweating, water, and liquids are common. If not adequately maintained, carpet tiles can absorb moisture, leading to mold and mildew growth.
  • Indentations: Heavy gym equipment can cause indentations on the carpet tiles, affecting their appearance and longevity. 

Carpet tiles can be a good option for a commercial gym in lounges, warm-up and stretching zones, childcare areas, and office spaces.

Hardwood Flooring

Hardwood flooring is an excellent option to create a classic and elegant look for your gym space. It is durable and the go-to choice for large sports facilities like basketball, volleyball, and hardball (squash) courts. 

Here are some pros and cons of hardwood flooring in a commercial sports facility: 


  • Aesthetics: Hardwood floors provide a classic, upscale, and professional appearance, enhancing the overall aesthetics of the gym and creating an inviting atmosphere.
  • Performance: Hardwood surfaces offer a consistent and fast playing surface. This allows athletes and gym users to perform at their best and demonstrate their skills effectively.
  • Durability: High-quality hardwood floors are exceptionally durable, withstand heavy foot traffic, and moderate gym equipment use. They have a long lifespan when properly maintained.
  • Low Maintenance: Hardwood floors are relatively easy to clean and maintain. Regular sweeping and occasional refinishing can keep the floor in excellent condition, even with heavy use.


  • Cost: Hardwood floors are expensive to install, and the initial cost can be a significant investment.
  • Susceptible to Damage: Hardwood floors are typically unsuitable for gym areas with weights or heavy equipment.
  • Noise and Vibration: Regarding noise, hardwood floors create more sound than carpet tiles or rubber gym flooring options.
  • Slippery Surface: Some hardwood finishes can be slippery, especially when wet or sweaty. This may increase the risk of slips and falls.

Hardwood floors are ideal for team sports, yoga studios, dance studios, and certain types of workout zones. They are also ideal for high-end fitness centers to provide a premium experience. 

Artificial Turf

Artificial turf is ideal for gyms, fitness centers, and outdoor sports areas. It provides a more natural environment indoors with a low-impact, non-slip surface. Artificial grass is suitable for most indoor and outdoor sports and fitness activities. 

Here are some pros and cons of artificial turf in a commercial gym:


  • Versatility: Artificial turf can be used in most gym areas.
  • Natural appearance: Unlike rubber, wood, or vinyl gym floors, artificial turf brings nature indoors for an authentic outdoor sports experience.
  • Durability: High-quality artificial turf withstands heavy foot traffic and intense workout activities.
  • Shock Absorption: Artificial turf has good shock absorption, which can benefit functional training areas or places where athletes need extra cushioning during workouts.
  • Safe Surface: Artificial turf is non-slip and can reduce the risk of trips and falls during exercises.


  • Cost: High-quality artificial turf can be relatively expensive to install.
  • Odor Retention: If not adequately maintained, artificial turf can trap odors, especially from sweat and other bodily fluids, leading to potential hygiene issues and bacterial infections.
  • Lifespan: While artificial turf is durable, it has a limited lifespan compared to rubber and hardwood flooring.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Gym Flooring

Your choice of flooring for a commercial gym depends on various factors.  Here are the main considerations for your choice of floor surface:

  • Durability
  • Slip resistance
  • Shock absorption
  • Aesthetics
  • Your branding
  • Safety standards
  • Maintenance
  • Activity-specific needs
  • Budget, including the initial cost and long-term maintenance 

Installation Considerations

The installation process is one of the key considerations in choosing the best gym flooring. Depending on your preferences and capabilities, you can opt for professional installation or do it yourself.

Professional sports floor installation has certain advantages. Hiring the best contractor ensures that the flooring is installed correctly. You also get the best advice. For example, it alleviates the stress of researching the best flooring options and obtaining the necessary tools for installation. Additionally, professionals have the experience to handle any challenges during installation.

On the other hand, opting for a DIY installation can be a cheaper solution. You can control the process and source the most cost-effective materials. However, ensuring you have the necessary skills and equipment to complete the project is crucial.

Choosing the best gym flooring: Takeaway

Are you looking for a reliable, cost-effective solution for installing the best gym flooring? Then look no further than J&J Gym Floors. Our team of experienced professionals is dedicated to providing high-quality and customized solutions that suit your specific needs.

With J&J Gym Floors, you have the assurance that your gym flooring will be the safest, most durable, and aesthetically pleasing possible. Contact us today to learn more about our services and why we are the trusted choice for commercial gym floor installation.

Choosing the right gym flooring is essential for a successful fitness or sports facility. Discover the key factors to consider in this comprehensive guide.

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J & J Gym Floors is a full-service gym floor company. Established in 2000, we’ve completed more than 35,000 projects for various types of facilities: NBA basketball courts, college gym floors, high school gymnasiums, K-8 gym floors as well as fitness centers, YMCAs and Jewish Community Centers. We also done some amazing work for homeowners and professional athletes! 

We specialize in: gym floor screening and recoating, basketball court sanding and refinishing, new gym floor installations, gymnasium wall padding, expert gym floor repairs as well as gym floor designs, graphics, logos and game lines.

We’re proud to service the following areas: New Jersey, New York (including NYC‘s five boroughs: Manhattan, Brooklyn, The Bronx, Queens & Staten Island), as well as all of Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland and Rhode Island. 

We’re based in Northern New Jersey and we service most of NJ, NY, NYC, CT, PA, DE, MD & RI.
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