Posted on: August 29th, 2013 by Kelly Green
MAYO CLINIC APPROVES OF YOGA FOR STRESS RELIEF
Stress. It’s everywhere. A ringing phone at the wrong moment can send me flying through the air, shrieking like a goosed intern . . . not that I’ve ever goosed an intern. . . . Or a waitress . . . or a nun . . . moving on.
Even the “DING” of an arriving email can send my anxiety levels to “Houston, we have a problem” levels. So what can we do in this day and age to help alleviate some of that pent up stress? One possible avenue of relief has recently been suggested by the Mayo Clinic.
“Yoga is a mind-body practice that combines stretching exercises, controlled breathing and relaxation. Yoga can help reduce stress, lower blood pressure and improve heart function. And almost anyone can do it.”
Yoga has many styles, forms and intensities. Sometimes a yoga mat is all that is needed for a beginner or advanced student. Other times a prop like a stretching strap or a Bolster may be part of your experience. Jo-Sha mat wipes are also available to be sure whatever you’re using is clean and smells good.
Hatha yoga, my discipline of choice, is good for stress management because of its Tai Chi style of slower, gentler movement. Hatha is also one of the most common styles of yoga, classes are easy to find and literature abounds. Besides, did you know there are eleventy -gajillion postures that have “prone, seated, relaxed, or rest in their names? But I digress. Most people can benefit from any style of yoga — it’s all about your personal preferences. Mine just happen to consist of sitting, relaxing, resting and proning.
The core components of hatha yoga are:
Poses. Yoga poses, also called postures, are a series of movements designed to increase strength and flexibility. Poses range from lying on the floor while completely relaxed to difficult postures that may have you stretching your physical limits.
Breathing. Controlling your breathing is an important part of yoga. In yoga, breath signifies your vital energy. Yoga teaches that controlling your breathing can help you control your body and quiet your mind.
The potential health benefits of yoga include:
Stress reduction. A number of studies have shown that yoga can help reduce stress and anxiety. It can also enhance your mood and overall sense of well-being.
Improved fitness. Practicing yoga can lead to improved balance, flexibility, range of motion and strength. And this means you’re less likely to injure yourself in other physical endeavors or in your daily activities.
Management of chronic conditions. Yoga can help reduce risk factors for chronic diseases, such as heart disease and high blood pressure. Yoga might also help alleviate chronic conditions, such as depression, pain, anxiety and insomnia.
Once you decide on your style of yoga, head on over to the MatsMatsMats.com website and have a gander at all the different items that you can buy to get the most out of your burgeoning quest for yogism. Yoga Mats, Bolsters, meditation cushions, pillows, blankets, towels, blocks, benches, wedges, straps, cleaning wipes, disinfectants, and so much more.
Posted on: August 23rd, 2013 by Kelly Green
I recently took a sick day off. For unknown reasons, I had a gland infection under my jawline that made me look like a squirrel harvesting acorns. Not only that but my eyes were reacting to some kind of irritant (I thought it was my mother-in-laws cooking but I could be wrong). Along with this came a nagging temperature, also known as a low grade fever. Is there anything more demoralizing than looking like a rabid wombat and feeling like a piece of meat in a toaster oven? I just wanted to sleep and call it a day. Problem was I could not get comfortable. Twisting this way and that way, I started looking at the bathroom tiles with longing, knowing that the coolness would be a balm.
Enter the Shiatsu Thai Massage Mat, this amazing, comfortable mat wicks away the sweat and keeps me cooler and more comfortable than anything else I know. Although the original purpose was for giving and receiving a massage, I have found it perfect for the rogue nap and camping. It provides a clean, soft platform to ease into slumberland and along with a zafu pillow “borrowed” from my wife’s collection of yoga meditation supplies. I was able to get a comfortable and cool few hours of rest while still able to tell my spouse that I spent the day with her meditation equipment. I merely leave out the part where I am snoozing.
If I had been thinking clearly, I would have added a silk eye pillow fresh out of the freezer to soothe my swollen eyes. But I was already asleep and snoring before I even thought about thinking about maybe wandering in that direction.
Posted on: August 16th, 2013 by Kelly Green
Comic con San Diego has come and gone. Over 130,000 attended the 4 day event that celebrated the inner nerd and fanboi or fangurl lurking within us all. There were representatives not only from the comic’s world but movies, television, music, gaming, and art worlds. The display areas and tradeshow booths were on the order of “HOLY MOLEY!”
Yet in all riotous colors, seismic noise and swirl of dervish behavior, it seemed that something was lacking. The floors. No, the floors weren’t missing, there was no one plummeting to a cartoonish death into the sub- basement, the flooring was rather nondescript and decidedly “meh.”
I can’t believe that EVERY booth missed a golden opportunity to va-va-va-voom up the floor in their tradeshow booth with customized tradeshow flooring! Most opted for a standard soft carpet red or blue surface without any type of attempt to customize or separate the look from the booth next to them. Here was an opportunity for the walking dead to use soft rubber tiles to simulate the asphalt upon which so many doomed zombie chases occur. Or maybe a checkerboard pattern to call to mind the mind-games at the Dexter display. What about using softwood floor at the “Teen Wolf” display and mark it off with basketball decals? The most obvious miss to would be the Minecraft area. If you could take the SoftCarpet greens, browns, greys, blues and reds, you could practically duplicate someone’s Minecraft castle!
You could also use our custom Carpet Logo Mats to form just about any type of flooring look from M.C. Escher to H.R. Giger, OR how about a Giger Alien in an Escher stairmaze! (If you don’t know what I am talking about, bust out your handy Wiki on those names.)
One last choice, how about plain White Premium SoftFloor and hand out markers to the celebrity visitors and have them sign the tiles? Now you have a memento for future booths AND a cool way to show the cool visitors to your trade show booth! (or you could send them back to me at matsmatsmats.com as a gesture of love and goodwill.)
Posted on: August 16th, 2013 by Kelly Green
Hello true believers, we are back to Blogsville after taking some time off for the Independence Day Celebrations. I realize that many of you must be burning with desire to learn what tidbit of knowledge the “MatsMatsMats.com Blogging Krew” has in store for you.
By now you must have realized that each blogger has their own special style of imparting valuable information to you.
When Chris speaks of anti fatigue safety mats or home flooring, he always waxes poetical as he pulls deeply from his own life’s journey. Sentimentality and pathos, at times, run rampant as he waxes poetically from entrance mats to trade show flooring. One can almost imagine him in a dingy little loft, laboring over his latest treatise, “Somehow I must REACH THEM!”
Ben, on the other hand, often slings cold hard facts about like a fry cook with 10 orders on his docket. He does this with a surgeons skill whether talking about Yoga Mats or rolled rubber flooring. “I found myself pondering in very deep ways the nature of the universe”. Yes, my friends, our Gentle Ben is a conundrum wrapped in an enigma, surrounded by a mystery which has all been stuffed inside a philosophical musician who blogs about floor coverings.
Stag is much like a cartoon character. “STAG SMASH!” As an example of this unrelenting verbal violence, I render forth these typical “Stagisms”. “I started hacking and chipping, and banging away on this little project of mine.”, “. . . we all know cats are very finicky and picky. . .” completely and utterly annihilating the rented skates”. THERE! Have you ever HEARD of such unfettered rage? His takes on martial arts flooring and all things excersizish are legend.
I, of course, am your sweet voice of reason; I present useful and pithy dibs and dabs of knowledge reaching from Anti-fatigue mats to Zafus. I illuminate and elucidate with a certain je ne sais quoi. We all have our market of fans and followers as each of our voices are unique and highly defined. Except for Stag, he’s just scary.
Posted on: August 2nd, 2013 by Kelly Green
Among the biggest rivalries in history is Mother’s Day versus Father’s Day. Think about the disparity between the two:
Moms get flowers, Dads get ugly ties.
Moms get candy, Dads get whoopee cushions and flatulence jokes.
Moms get to eat out, Dads end up choking on barbeque smoke.
Okay, I admit, I don’t have a problem with any of this. In fact, given the choice of waiting for expensive food prepared by a temperamental French cook and grilling my favorite chunk of meat on a mesquite grill with an icy beverage and some 60’s bebop blaring, I’ll take the grill anytime.
I bet you’re wondering how this all relates to mats. Me too. . . Wait, I got it!
Just as there is a perceived disparity between the two holidays, there may be a perceived disparity between two of our exercise floor mats, it all depends on the end user. Consider sports that use mats like wrestling mats versus gymnastic mats.
A wrestling mat is not a gymnastic floor. Typically a mat used for wrestling has fantastic energy absorption properties. When a mass with terrific kinetic force comes to an abrupt stop, generally speaking, you want that mass to have a fairly cushioned landing area so as not to have said mass break, spindle or mutilate. There has to be some degree of “pillowing”.
Contrast this with gymnastic floor mats need. Rather than absorb kinetic energy, it amplifies and returns the energy and softens landings without reducing kinetic energy. Without this property, tumbling runs would rely solely on the limb strength of the athlete to obtain height and rotation.
If you were to wrestle on a gymnastic floor, it would look like an old cartoon as bodies would be slammed about like Bam Bam Rubble from the Flintstones manhandling Barney BAM BAM BAM BAM! Whereas trying to do a double back or even a running front Russian on a wrestling mat would take legs the size of a youthful Arnold Schwarzenegger.
I look at the sentimental cards and handmade artsy-crafty stuff that makes my beloved wife get all teary eyed on Mother’s Day and I think, “What the heck is that?!” Just as I am sure my wife think, “That tie looks like a clown threw up, please don’t let him wear that outside where people can see.”
It’s all about the end user.
Posted on: July 26th, 2013 by Kelly Green
So, you want to set up a home exercise area. One of the first things you should do is decide what type of exercise regimen you will follow. Aerobics, Yoga, weight machines, free weights, martial arts, Pilates, Zumba. All of these programs require specific flooring needs. As an example, let’s look at the difference between the flooring needs of free weights versus aerobics.
With free weights, consider these important factors.
Sub floor protection. Weights are . . . well . . . weighty, and are generally not made of feathers or fluff. If you don’t believe me, just drop one on your toe. You need a durable, high density, wear resistant surface with great noise absorption properties. Dependent on the amount of weight being used and the type of apparatus, my suggestion would be a recycled rubber flooring. One of the thicker rolled rubbers or maybe one of the Tuff n Easy interlocking tiles. Rubber flooring tiles are ideal for weight lifting because not only do they provide great floor protection but they also provide perfect footing, focusing on stability while incorporating anti-fatigue properties. Since the product is made from rubber, its wear and durability characteristics are assured. Besides, when lifting a bar, it feels cool when you put the bar down to have it bounce a little, proving how heavy it was.
Now consider the different criteria for an aerobic surface. Rather than being stationary, aerobics involve bouncing about like a rabid wombat in heat. (I looked it up in the Australian Wikipedia) Traction, energy return, anti-fatigue and comfort, tops the list of preferred properties. I would look closely at either the premium SoftFloor tiles or maybe even a carpeted crosslink rolls. The objective is to provide a springy floor with a lot of “energy return” rather than energy absorption. Traction is a major factor when utilizing more robust movement and softness is desirable for when you plop to the ground in an endorphin induced coma.
When looking for flooring, it pays to inform your sales representative as to the purpose you plan to put the floor to. “I want to set up an exercise area”, means different things to different people and we here at MatsMatsMats.com can be your consultative resource to find you the perfect floor for your needs.
Posted on: July 16th, 2013 by Kelly Green
For those of you who are considering setting up your own Yoga Studio, you may want to include in your list of necessary pieces of yoga equipment, the humble micro fiber towels. Besides the usual suspects of a yoga mat, bolster, pillow, wedge and a stretching strap, I would venture to say that the yoga towel is one of the most frequently overlooked prop.
I know that when I exercise, I perspire a great deal. When said perspiration drips into my eyes, blinding me or making it impossible to see through my now drippy glasses, I have a tendency to shout, “AUGH! I’M DONE” as I walk away. In the past this has worked on my wife and she reluctantly allows me to wander off to get the sweat out of my eyes and/or clean my spectacles.
However, came the day when I started the usual whining, “I’M BLIND! I’M BLIND!”, when I was smacked in the face with a soft, waffle weave, yoga towel.
“Holy Crap on a cracker man, you whine more than a three year old multiplied by Morrisey!” my wife observed.
Discounting the fact that I had to Google who the heck Morrisey was, I was fairly certain that I had been insulted.
“How do you expect me to yoga-ize when I can’t see and my eyes are all stingy?”
“Use the towel, crybaby”. (My wife considers calling me a crybaby the end of any discussion.)
I found out that these towels are available at MatsMatsMats.com in a face towel of full yoga mat size. It’s washable, absorbs tons of sweat and provides superior traction when your hands get sweaty.
So, if you are making a check list of supplies tools and props for your clientele or if you want a towel that is made specifically for use on a yoga mat, consider a hot yoga towel an essential yoga tool rather than an optional luxury.
Posted on: July 9th, 2013 by Kelly Green
In the beginning, flooring options were limited. There was dirt. Lots and lots of dirt. Maybe some rocks. If you were snooty, you had cave wall to wall grass. As we evolved, we started using wood with the dirt and rocks. If you were lucky you had some animal skins, sometimes still attached to the animal, and maybe some leaves that, hopefully, wouldn’t give you a rash. The next evolution of floor coverings was the woven rug, area rug, throw rug and herbal rug. Rugs were universally despised. This, therefore, is the origin of the term “cutting the rug”. NOBODY likes a rug, ask Trump.
We have grown past all of these inferior flooring products. There are now flooring materials that have been fine-tuned for very specific activities. Are you writhing in a pile of bodies on the floor? You may need one of our new, remnant or lightweight wrestling mats. Are people getting tossed about like so much detritus in the wind? Some of our martial arts flooring options would work better, like the seamless floor option, interlocking floor mats, deluxe bi-layer martial arts mat or even one of these options with the addition of a throw mat for repeated impromptu flying lessons.
For the outdoor aeronautically inclined, we have the durable and popular bounceback playground tiles. These bad boys can cushion falls from up to 8’ in height, just the thing for highflying swingers without a self-preservation bone in their body. These will keep what bones they have, intact and ready to soar again.
When your website is named MatsMatsMats.com, you can bet we have a vast landscape of specialty mats and other floor coverings. From display floors to greetings at doors, from weight rooms to runners for grooms, from horse stalls to giant exercise balls, from mats that can heat to mats that provide aid to fatigued feet. If it fits on a floor, in front of a door, whether it’s one mat or more, come gather our lore, for we are MATSMATSMATS.COM!
Posted on: June 28th, 2013 by Kelly Green
The Department of Labor recently conducted a series of studies with the intention of giving numeric values to the amount of relief offered by anti-fatigue mats in a working environment that is using a primarily concrete flooring surface.
The conclusion of the studies will, no doubt, earn several Nobel prizes. The resulting answers are as follows : Anti-Fatigue mats are of great help.
Here’s a suggestion fellas, ASK the WORKING STIFF! Whether you are on an assembly line or behind a register at the local “Bag O’ Groceries” store, standing on a hard surface is horrible and standing on a cushy mat is better. TAH DAH! Can I have the grant money now?
“Test methods included infrared thermal imaging, body temperature sensors, calf circumference measurement, cognitive testing and a questionnaire regarding body comfort where participants registered their scaled ratings on levels of comfort or discomfort as well as levels of fatigue/tiredness. Eight different anti-fatigue matting samples were provided.
The subjective results showed statistically significant benefits to users of anti-fatigue floor mats when compared to standing on a concrete floor, especially to the lower and upper legs and lower back areas. The comfort comparisons between the ‘mat’ and ‘no mat’ conditions after 90 minutes were significant with benefits experienced to both thermal and postural comfort.”
Director, Richard Cooke says, “We are very pleased with the results of this study and would like to thank all those involved.”
•Anti-fatigue matting helps to promote regular movement as the feet naturally adapt to the cushioned surface of the mat. The movement of muscles contracting and expanding is very subtle but is enough to reduce, even prevent in some cases, the health risks associated with standing by increasing blood flow and helping oxygen reach the heart.
•Increasing comfort by installing anti-fatigue matting helps to improve concentration, reducing the potential for accidents, and also helps to increase productivity.
•Back pain is a huge concern for employers and extremely distressing for sufferers. The scientific study confirms that the use of floor mats has a beneficial effect on the postural comfort to those who stand for long periods of time compared to standing on concrete.
The New name for the Department has been officially changed to The Department of Understudied Habitats, or DUH for short.
Posted on: June 27th, 2013 by Kelly Green
One of my clients came up with a unique idea. Buy a bunch of the interlocking floor mats, the SoftWood foam tiles, and paint a mini basketball court on them for his three boys’ basement playroom. Mini hoops with foam basketballs clinched the deal. Heck, I wanted to go there myself and play. The obstacle was figuring out how to paint the SoftWood flooring without the paint chipping, cracking or rubbing off. I was so intrigued; we spent half the day calling various “experts” asking how this could be done.
When I went home, thoroughly defeated, my loving wife asked why I was whiny and mopey.
“I neither whine nor mope.” I said nobly
My wife’s jaw dropped to the floor in a very unseemly manner.
“HA! You whine more than a piglet on Bonaficio Day.”
“Who, the what now?”
“Filipino, learn the culture tanga boy.”
“Does tanga mean handsome in Tagalog?”
“Um. . . yes,” She said with shifty eyes, “Why don’t you just go get some vinyl stickers from somewhere? Won’t they adhere to the film laminate and not rub off or crack like any paint would?”
As I sat there, trying to think of a reason why this wouldn’t work, my wife beat a hasty retreat to the kitchen, no doubt in fear of the rapier sharp rejoinder on the tip of my tongue. Or it would be on the tip of my tongue if I had not been thinking of vinyl stickers to go on the SoftWood floor.
“I HAVE IT! I yelled, “I’ll get some vinyl stickers and put them on the SoftWood interlocking foam floor tiles to make it look like a basketball court! This opens up a world of possibilities, want to play at a Mini Wimbledon? Grab some green SoftCarpet tiles and make your own tennis court! French Open? Substitute the green SoftCarpet with Clay colored SoftFloor tiles. How about the Long Beach Grand Prix? SoftRubber tiles for a surface that looks like asphalt and the make a path in vinyl decals. Golf courses, football fields, baseball, all could be replicated on these surfaces. How about a giant chess or checkers board with NO decals, just red and black tiles? GOOD GOD! I AM a genius.”
The silence from the kitchen was not at all ominous.