How Gym Mats & Padding 101 works

For the past 40 years, we at Sport Systems have dedicated ourselves to designing, manufacturing and installing industry-leading athletic infrastructure and equipment.  Over time, we have fielded thousands of questions from our wonderful clientele and have found that in order to find the proper system, we typically have to answer the same core group of questions. 

You’ll find them below along with the answers.

Frequently Asked Questions

You’ve got questions, we’ve got answers. Here’s a quick selection of some of the most common questions we field on a daily basis.

Wall Padding

What Gym Mats do I use for Removable Wall Padding?

We use the Varsity style mats for any removable wall padding application.  They feature the lightest foam which in turn allows these mats to hang much more effectively on the installed Velcro…Click to read full article

The amount of wall padding a gymnasium needs has long been a topic of debate among facility operators and managers. The difficulty in assessing the right answer to this question lies in the fact that there is no regulating body on the matter, and that it can end up being very dependent on the unique needs of any particular gymnasium…Click here to read full article

A basic wall padding installation requires only a drill and some drywall screws.  If the wall pads are being installed into concrete, brick or cement, we would recommend using Tapcon screws to secure them.  The installation can usually be handled by your maintenance department or by any general contractor.

Most facilities go with approximately 6′ in height but we can design wall padding up to 8′ in height depending on your specific requirements.

While there is no real regulatory body on this, we do recommend what the OPHEA authority states that there should be a minimum of 16’ W x 6’ H of safety padding behind each basket, while not being higher than 4” from the floor.

We have an entire pad assembly that has passed CAN/ULC-s102 and is our premium level of padding.  The most common application for this type of padding is in de-escalation and/or quiet rooms.

We have complete design services for virtually any type of padding. Padding is made to suit each application and we have a very experienced padding department that has designed and implemented many solutions to a wide array of configurations.

Padded Rooms

What kind of padded rooms does Sport Systems specialize in?

Our in-house design team gives us the opportunity to design wall padding for virtually any space.  We specialize in remand rooms, sensory rooms, treatment rooms, de-escalation rooms, calming rooms and seclusion rooms, just to name a few…Click to read full article

Yes!  While we do offer installation services, each completed padding project comes with detailed 3-D CAD drawings and instructions for installation by you or your maintenance staff…Click to read full article

Gym Mats

How do the Folding Gym Mats fold?

The gym mats fold in 2’ wide sections on the longest end of the mat. For example, with a 4’x8’ mat, the 8’ length is divided into four 2’ wide folding sections. When folded, the 4’x8’ mat measures 4’x2’x16”.

The gym mats are all made with different types of foam or foam combinations. It is the foam type that determines what the best application is for that style of mat. Take a good look at the material specifications that detail the different foam types and their applications.

We have complete design services for virtually any type of padding. Matting and padding are made to suit each application and we have a very experienced padding department that has designed and implemented a variety of solutions to a wide array of applications and configurations.

All of our padding and matting products are subject to a number of rigorous tests, verifying their durability and ability to reduce shock from human impact. Our padding is sent out to independent labs that specialize in specific impact attenuation testing, and who provide us with detailed reports.

These comprehensive reports review any shortcomings any padding might have in any number of tests run. The requirements and standards used are all in accordance with ASTM International’s  Standard Specifications for Indoor Wall/Feature Padding and other related specifications such as Head and Neck Injuries in Sports, Impact Attenuation of Surfacing Materials and Playground Equipment – completely dependent on the intended final use of the specified piece of padding…Click to read full article

There are two main factors to consider when evaluating your next purchase of gym mats for gymnastics, whether for recreational use in a school setting, or in an advanced gymnastics facility.  Those two factors are thickness and material…Click to read full article

With the proper care, you can easily extend the life cycle of your gym mats.  Proper cleaning, repairs and conditions are key to making your gym mat investment last for many years…Click to read full article

Crash Pads

Do you manufacture crash pads for rock climbing gyms?

Yes, we provide our rock climbing customers and those in related industries with the very best in crash protection.  There are a few factors to take into consideration when shopping for a new crash pad for rock climbing, please click to read full article.

We also manufacture a custom-designed line of crash pads for use with Pole Dancing exercises and studios… Click to read full article

Quote & Ordering Information

What information does Sport Systems need in order to receive an accurate quote?

Due to the specific needs of the variety of facilities and organizations that we service, we have created a number of resources to help in the quoting process. 

First, use our Custom Padding Details Reference Sheet to accurately and properly measure the dimensions of your project:


Using the information you have gathered by using the above Custom Padding Reference Sheet, fill out an online Request For Quote:


For additional information and a hard copy of our Quote Form, download our complete Guide to Custom Padding:


request a quote

Padding Video gallery

Sample Padding Gallery


Complex indoor padding for walls and columns.


Gymnasium wall padding.


Column padding in athletic facility.


A completely padded room.

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