April 6th, 2015 by Ben Gonzalez
It was during this year’s Halloween Harvest Festival at the local community college that I realized the importance of portable dance floors. Not for me, particularly but some of this year’s performers. As the world continues on this warming trend towards certain catastrophe, the San Fernando Valley treated us to triple digit weather in the middle of October. One particular Saturday, we got a whopping 110 degrees! In October! The extreme temperature changes from night to day made it so our uncovered wooden stage warped immensely along the seams of the planks. Luckily, our handy man was able to remove the warped and cracked plank and put in new ones. But ther was a new problem. Since the planks that were put in a replacements were newer, they were also slightly thicker. This small detail made some of the kids’ choreography a little less than graceful. After a few tumbles and some humble recoveries right back into the number, I had one of the dance instructors ask if we had anything that we can lay over the stage to smooth it out so to speak. It actually baffled me to realize that not ONE of these coaches had brought with them some kind of vinyl floor or the like considering that MANY of the requests we get here are about using the Matlay Dance Floor for various competitions and showcases that are outside of the troupes respective dance schools or home venues.
It dawned on me that aside from the smooth and even surface, the Matlay flooring actually serves to cover and hide a lot of the tiny cracks and splinters on outdoor stages that can otherwise be hazards to performances.
March 30th, 2015 by Stag
Now that it is getting a bit colder – or at least as cold as it can get here in California; it is time for some much needed star gazing. A while ago, a few friends and I had all pitched in to purchase a rather large amateur telescope. With the weather cooling down, that means that there is less atmospheric distortion in the telescope and much clearer images, which is always a good thing! Now it just comes down to driving up to the low-lying mountains around Los Angeles in order to get a better view with much less light than the city.
As much of this happens out in the middle of nowhere and the telescope is only three or so feet from the ground; we usually bring a vinyl mat of some sort with us so that we have something comfortable to kneel and sit on. It definitely takes the joy out of looking out into the universe if you knees are being pinned by sharp rocks, so the gymnastics mats certainly do come in handy.
Perhaps this weekend the tribe and I will head up to the mountains for a night and see what we can see. We have had a lot of success in the mountains and I would certainly love to see Andromeda (our nearest Galaxy) again; as that is quite a sight. So I think we will be packing up all the science gear mumbo-jumbo and our folding exercise mat and head out early tonight. ‘Second star to the right and straight on till morning’.
February 5th, 2015 by Stag
“ Rock & Roll – ed Rubber “
In my seemingly never-ending tomfoolery, tinkering, and hobby seeking; I am mulling over the idea of learning guitar. As the grand majority of my friends are all musicians, you would think that I would have done this many years ago. Yet alas, in typical me-style; I am bringing up the rear with the gear. Though it may be for the best; now in my thirties I do not have the dreams of rocker stardom. I just want to be able to occupy some of my more dormant free time. You know make noise like a cave-man while I watch TV. In this best case scenario, I would be able to do this without annoying my roommate or neighbors, especially since I am just learning.
So in order to pad against this, I have armed myself with some rubber rolls to make a bit of a sound break in my bed-room. This decoupled barrier with fiber-glass and rubber mats lining will serve to reduce the volume of the guitar amplifier that my neighbors and roommate can hear from their rooms. The rubber lines the break with a dense, yet porous material that will break-up the sound. When combined with the fiber-glass lining on the inside it will certainly damper the noise level. Anything to keep my land-lord from knocking on my door is a good thing in my book. Now I just need a guitar to actually play, and of course learn to play it.
December 15th, 2014 by Chris Aviles
The Holidays are coming which means it’s time to start planning all the joy, and I mean gifts, I plan on spreading this year. I definitely am not one of those people that save all year so I’m not always able to buy gifts in August like my grandparents. Plus, I think part of the holiday season is getting out and shopping among the holiday music and cheery decorations.
Shopping online is a different story. I’m sure I’ve blogged about this before but I’m going to beat a dead horse… Order your gifts now or at least start your research. Many companies like ours have lots of in-stock items and can usually get them to you in a couple of days. During the holidays, online stores are no different than your regular department stores, we get crowded too- you just can’t see our crowds. The reason why this is important to realize is while the Folding Gymnastics mat your daughter is dying to have may normally be in stock, but during the holidays could have to be produced which can take 3 weeks. Combine that with the fact that shipping carriers like UPS and FedEx are just as over whelmed and can be a few days behind schedule, and you can end up needing a month for an item that any other time of year you would have in a week.
I hope this wasn’t discouraging, I really am just trying to help. I talk to so many people around the Holidays and while most of them are happy, there are a few that I couldn’t get a product out to in time and it breaks my heart. I want everybody to have all their expectations met around the Holidays.
October 22nd, 2014 by Stag
“ An ‘Axe’ to Grind “
After fifteen plus years of wanting to learn a musical instrument; I have finally really began to practice. I recently purchased an electric guitar second hand online. I have had this little beauty for about three weeks and I have actually practiced on it at least 2 hours a night almost five nights a week. This is a big increase when compared to my previous efforts. When I was 16 years old, I bought a bass guitar rather than a six string guitar. My reasoning behind this was that almost everyone I knew already played guitar, but no one was playing bass. So I figured I would fill that void. However I always tried to play the bass as a six string and it just never worked for me.
So many years later I ended up giving away my bass to a friend of mine, and thankfully he has put it to very good use. After that, I got into working out and even got attached to my favorite exercise mat. Well, now in my dare I say “older” age that I give it another go. However this time I wanted a guitar, “guitar”. Well it seems that I made the right choice and now only wish I had done so fifteen years ago. Now that I am practicing so much with this new axe of mine, I have found that I do need a bit of a back support cushion of some nature however. Sitting up on the couch of in a kitchen chair for hours definitely has its draw backs.
I decided to use a reading pillow to use a back support, as it is more ridged and I can prop it up in the couch, floor or a normal chair and still be able to clear my guitar so I can use it and so it doesn’t hit the furniture. So I call that a Win, Win in my book. Now that my back is set and rested with this nifty little support pillow, the real shredding can begin!
September 30th, 2014 by Ben Gonzalez
A popular misconception with most of our products is that they are limited to a particular use. Must be something to do with the extensive catalog of items we carry here. One would not think that “Wrestling Mats” are also a great surface for veterinary applications, pediatric, and a myriad of other uses that we’ve seen our customers purchase these for. While we do have two types of of these (the CLASSIC and the LIGHT WEIGHT), by far the most versatile and longer lasting of the two, albeit that more expensive one, would be the CLASSIC. At 1” or 1.25” in thickness, the proprietary material is quite literally a “rubber foam”. Strong enough to withstand constant use yet has enough shock absorption to be used as a surface to slam a 200 lb adult on. Or lay a baby on and have him take a nap. Whatever the need, these mats certainly deliver. Here are some of the more creative ways that our customers have used this material.
Yacht Deck – Too rich for my blood, personally. But one of our customers fitted his yacht with about 200 sq ft of this stuff on one of his decks presumably to sun bathe and host wild parties. At least, that’s what I would do.
Safety lining – A veteran and military enthusiast was building his own dune buggy type vehicle and was apparently having a hard time fitting the inside of his vehicle with a suitable foam-type material that can withstand impact but still have a color on it that POPS. He settled on several custom cut pieces of our Wrestling Mat material to fit the inside of his roll cage, his seat, and his dash board with in a right “tactical” orange color.
Veterinary clinic – Most veterinary clinics have high metal gurneys that dogs, cats, and other critters get placed on for check-ups, sterilization, etc. A more considerate vet decided that he wanted soft, hospital style inspection tables with a material that was non-permeable, had an anti-bacterial lining (Microban) and was strong enough to last but soft enough for the animals.
Backpacker – This one was a little more impractical but worth mention. Backpackers generally have roll up mats more akin to our foam exercise mats for sleeping in the wilderness or taking a quick rest in various rough terrain. This customer wanted something much thicker than the usual 3/8” material and also VERY easy to clean. A one-inch 2’x8’ mat was his winning number, although that mat alone would be about 16lbs in addition to his heavy bag.
Don’t let the names of some of the products deceive you! Get creative!
September 18th, 2014 by Chris Aviles
It’s kinda funny that out of all our products one of my favorite ones here at MatsMatsMats.com isn’t even a mat. I really like our Mylar Mirrors. There’s a lot of reason but mainly for me from a sales representatives prospective, they’re easy to quote, a product everyone is always pleased with and I have a soft spot for kids that perform and raise money to get the right (not so cheap) aids to help them perfect their art. I like being able to help them out anyway I can. Due to their light weight, shipping 1 or 6 is usually always the same cost and if you get more than 6 I can sometimes waive shipping all together!
Mylar Mirrors are not your typical glass type that you have in your closets or in your bathroom. Our glassless mirrors give a brighter, sharper reflection than plate glass, with no ghost images. Another upside is these mirrors are very light weight- less than 12 lbs!; If you have your mirrors on rolling frames you can move them around with ease.
I used to dance, and during rehearsals at school we had regular mirrors on rolling frames that we would use in front of us on stage. Very often somebody would fall into a mirror which is no huge deal, until one shattered all over the stage. Luckily nobody was hurt, but we could no longer dance barefoot or in socks for fear of left over glass shards. A mylar mirror is shatter resistant, and you will never have the fear of one of them injuring your students should it break.
April 29th, 2014 by Chris Aviles
As a kid we all have dreams of being something amazing. Growing up in California, so close to Hollywood, my dream was always to be an actor. I am so in love with the entertainment industry and couldn’t imagine doing anything else. As I got older I transitioned from acting, to public relations, to management, to event coordinator and now as an adult I’m on my way to running or owning my own restaurant. Although being a restaurant owner isn’t the same as being an actor it’s in the same family. I realized that while I love becoming somebody else and having fun performing, it comes down to being entertaining and making people happy.
While I’m ever so slowly putting myself through school, I have this great job at MatsMatsMats.com where I’m still not very far from the entertainment industry I love so much! Weird..right? Well let me explain…
Along with every kind of mat you can probably think of, we also have a huge selection of Dance products which some of you may be more familiar with then you realize. Some of our Ballet Bars have found a home at Glee’s Mckinley High, our Mylar Mirrors danced all over the Stage with ABDC’s Fanny Pak, our Free-Standing Ballet Barre made it all the way to 30 Rock to show some new workouts on “The Today Show”, even our Rolled Rubber Flooring graced the stage of Hollywood’s Dolby Theatre for Cirque de Soleil’s Iris.
So while I’m a little more detached from the world I really want to be in, I get to peruse my dreams while working at a job that I can be passionate about. In a small little way, I get to be apart of the entertainment industry and help bring joy to people.
April 16th, 2014 by Stag
So, in keeping with my current trend of blogs; I have been working out quite a bit lately. This is a good thing as that pattern had never really stuck in the past. That is why I am in such good shape, and yes, round is a shape – insert obligatory emoticon winky-face here. Yet I digress, as I have been getting more a flare for this new found life style, I have certainly found myself experiencing other changes that were not anticipated. In the first few weeks after running or climbing at my local rock climbing gym I was simply exhausted. Even though it would be only 7:00 -8:00pm I would come home starving; eat my healthy what have you and slink into my bed and bear hug my body pillow for about 12 seconds and promptly pass out.
This was the ongoing pattern for at least three weeks, until out of nowhere I actually became more energized afterwards. So now after an intense work out, run, or climbing session with many falls onto the crash pads, I come home and eat like a rabid animal and instead of retreating immediately to my bed to fall asleep I just take that same body pillow that I would find such solace in; I would simply mold it into a reading pillow of sorts; MacGuyver my way around my home furnishings if you will. Now I find myself staying up till the wee hours of the night as I used to. The only difference now is that I actually wake up feeling rested and aware, which is a quite a nice change.
March 26th, 2014 by Ben Gonzalez
It is said that there are two types of people: Dog people or cat people. Frankly, I was unaware but they both sound horrifying. If I were to encounter either of these grotesque canine/feline human hybrid mutants, I’d run like hell. I have met people with affinities for regular non-mutant cats or dogs. Personally, I lean towards cats. They’re independent, quiet, clean, and compact. Dogs, however, speak to my true nature. Sweet, playful, sloppy eaters, and loud.
My girlfriend and I recently adopted a young Labradane named Jolie. She’s a Labrador/Great Dane mix and about 10 months old. She is a very big dog and very active. She’s given me a run for my money, quite literally, as my schedule now demands 2 hours of running and playing with her at either a dog park or the nearby lake in the morning, and again in the evening. And this is just on the weekdays. Training has been pretty good as she is intelligent and responsive. But a giant puppy is still a puppy. Much nibbling, much biting (playfully) and the occasional accident prone over excitement when mom or dad get home. The girlfriend will soon be be taking her to training classes and I couldn’t help but realize that she’ll probably be indoors at one of these giant dog training facilities. Selling our rolled rubber flooring for doggy day cares on a daily basis, it’ll be pretty interesting to see how well the floor holds up to the digging instincts of our new pup. Her nails are BIG and she is VERY strong. I’m pretty confident, though, that if it’s one of our surfaces as opposed to some of our competitors. It might make Jolie perk up in confusion and frustration as to why nothing is happening when she attempts to dig through to the center of the earth.