Grappling MMA Mats

Greatmats Grappling MMA Mats BJJ Training Mats infographicGreatmats’ brand Grappling MMA Mats are made of quality, durable ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) foam material that is designed for professional mixed martial arts (MMA) studio use at affordable prices. Our interlocking, reversible mats feature an American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) 4-foot fall height rating for head injuries. These mats are designed to be used by professionals in mixed martial arts studios for grappling, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ), Jiu Jitsu and Judo. These are the mats of choice for BJJ World Champions Rodrigo ”Comprido” Medeiros and Rafael Ellwanger as well as the South USA Grappling Association.

Our professional-grade mixed martial arts mats are easy to install and serve as economical interlocking grappling and MMA floors. Use our MMA mats for Judo, grappling, BJJ and Jiu Jitsu competitions or for training in your mixed martial arts studio. These MMA mats utilize an impressive interlocking EVA mat design for studios and home use. Having colors on both sides allows for multi-color designs in your facility. These grappling mats are 40 inches by 40 inches by 1-5/8-inch thick. These puzzle mats are designed to be used directly on any hard, flat surface without the need for additional padding.

Greatmats jiu jitsu mats for sale installed black and grayGreatmats’ 1 meter by 1 meter by 1-5/8-inch thick mats weight just 9 pounds per tile and are excellent choices for MMA floors, whether permanent or temporary. The included border strips add about 1/2 inch to the edge of the MMA mats. Our grappling mats are designed with a durable tatami mat top surface texture that will not give any skin burns while performing MMA moves. Greatmats MMA puzzle mats are used nationwide in professional studios and for competition floors. The dense Polyethylene (PE) and EVA foam materials are waterproof, lead free and latex free. Our grappling mats can be removed and cleaned inside or outside, but should be dry before laying back down.

Simply lay our kid-safe mixed martial arts mats down in the same direction and interlock the MMA mats together for a perfect fit every time. Measure twice and cut once using a sharp utility knife to make these grappling mats conform to your space for wall-to-wall installation. No adhesive is required. AlloGreatmats bjj puzzle mats tournament installationw your new grappling mats and MMA mats to acclimate to your room’s climate conditions prior to installation and allow a 1/2-inch gap around the perimeter of the room for the MMA mats to expand due to fluctuations in heat and humidity. Always avoid direct sunlight on the grappling mats as increased heat can cause expansion.

Our mixed martial arts mats are designed for use with bare feet. Soft martial arts shoes can be worn, but they may scuff your MMA mats.

Interlocking MMA mats by Greatmats have been installed in hundreds of professional martial arts facilities nationwide and receive outstanding reviews as the best interlocking MMA mat in the market at unbeatable prices.

Greatmats mixed martial arts mats are available in black/gray, red/blue, and black/green reversible colors. Color tone variations can and will most likely occur within the same batch of mats, even mats that are made at the factory within minutes of each other can vary in color. This is common with all interlocking EVA foam mats.Greatmats bjj mats martial arts mats red blue

‘Color coming off’ issue is not uncommon with puzzle mats.  This is common with puzzle mats of all types. We find that red and black are the most susceptible colors to this issue. This is when coloring of the mats comes off on feet and uniforms.

Border Edges

Greatmats grappling mma mats bjj border edgesRamped border strips are available as an accessory to your MMA mats and are available in gray only. The ramps are sold separately as a set of two. Corner pieces are not available. The tatami pattern will always run the long way on the ramp and may not match the texture pattern direction on your floor.

Tile Size:

  • Side to side with border strips attached 41 x 41 inches
  • Outside to outside of interlocking tabs 40.25 x 40.25 inches
  • Outside to inside of interlocking tabs 39.375 x 39.375 inches
  • Measurements may fluctuate if tiles are heated and expand

 

Installation & Maintenance

Greatmats grappling mat martial artsBe sure to clean your mats regularly with a vacuum (after testing the vacuum on the tiles to make sure it does not damage your martial arts flooring). Use a damp mop with diluted Pinesol and hot water as needed. Spot clean using a scrubby and a sponge. A walk behind auto cleaning machine is recommended for cleaning this flooring in large commercial areas.

Allow an approximately 1/2-inch gap around the perimeter of your room during installation to allow for mat expansion which can occur with fluctuations in heat and humidity. Keep direct sunlight off the mats if possible as this can heat them up and cause expansion.

Ordering

Our MMA mats come with a 1-year limited warranty. Request a free sample of our MMA mat for your review and testing, or request a price quote online. Use our online floor plan designer to layout your new mixed martial arts floor using Greatmats grappling and MMA mats.

Color tone variations can and will most likely occur within the same batch of mats. Even mats that are made at the factory within minutes of each other can vary in color. This is common with all interlocking EVA foam mats.

Greatmats grappling mats puzzle mats redGreatmats bjj mats for sale puzzle martial arts matsGreatmats BJJ MMA Foam Tiles interlockingGreatmats Mats MMA Training Puzzle MatsGreatmats Puzzle Mats BJJ TrainingGreatmats Grappling MMA Mats BJJ puzzle mats

Greatmats grappling mats tournament installed

Greatmats mats mma studio green and gray puzzle mats

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Groundbreaking Wing Chun Instructor Expands Expertise over Greatmats

Chris Damiano Builds Academy into One of the Best in Gulf Coast

By Brett Hart

After 32 years in martial arts, Sifu Chris Damiano has been round the world honing his skills in everything from wrestling to Hapkido to Judo, Boxing, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Jeet Kune Do and has developed a strong understanding of what works for him and his students.

A Chicago native, Sifu Damiano originally moved to Florida because he needed training partners. Soon he was teaching others how to be his training partners.

Chris Damiano owner Centerline Martial Arts Greatmats Grappling Mats

Wing Chun
In 1994, he narrowed his focus exclusively to Wing Chung and six years later traveled to Hong Kong to study with Grandmaster Ip Ching, the second eldest son of Bruce Lee’s mentor Ip Man. Damiano later became an instructor under Ip Ching, opening Centerline Martial Arts out of his garage in Destin, Florida in 2000. A contractor during the day, Sifu Damiano finally opened Centerline as a full-time martial arts academy in 2007. He quickly became one of the most sought after instructors in the Gulf Coast and was named the USA International Black Belt Hall of Fame’s 2013 Wing Chun Instructor of the Year.

Damiano now also has academies underneath his banner in St. Louis, Boston and Las Vegas.

Chris Damiano Centerline Martial Arts Greatmats Grappling Mats

Jiu Jitsu
Over the last four years, Damiano has added Gracie Jiu Jitsu to his repertoire, studying under fellow 30-plus year martial artist Sensei Brandon Hetzler, who has achieved black belts of varying degrees in Fudoshin Taijutsu, Goju-Ryu, Shito-Ryu and Gracie Jiu-Jitsu.

Sifo Damiano still splits his time between his contracting work and martial arts, teaching three days per week, but with other instructors, the academy is used 5-6 days per week.

centerline-martial-arts-chris-damiano8

The Need for Mats
With his current academy being located in the second story of an office building and his teaching expanding beyond Wing Chun to striking/kickboxing and jiu jitsu, he quickly discovered that concrete flooring was no longer suitable for his practices.

That’s when he discovered Greatmats martial arts floors. One of his friends with a big Karate school told him about Greatmats, and Hetzler, who has used Greatmats flooring in his home dojo for six years, both highly recommended Greatmats to Sifu Damiano.

In 2012, Damiano equipped his academy with Greatmats 20 mm inch thick martial arts mats and a pro pole pad. While he was happy with the quality of the mats, they proved to be too thin for his judo and jiu jitsu work – especially in the kids classes. So he ordered three of Greatmats’ 2 inch thick 4×10 foot folding mats to add more cushion for those exercises.

Centerline Martial Arts Chris Damiano Greatmats MMA Grappling Mats

Greatmats Grappling MMA Mats
In 2015, he upgraded to Greatmats’ 1 5/8 inch thick Grappling MMA Mats, with a no burn tatami surface and 4-foot critical fall height rating, and sold off his 7/8 inch mats to students for garage workout areas.

”These mats are not as taxing on the body for what I’m doing now,” Sifu Damiano said. ”I love those mats! My school’s completely covered in it except for my back room.”

With approximately 20 students per class and 45 of his 60 students being adults, the mats are regularly put to the test.

”Those mats get an awful lot of use every night,” He added. ”The overall quality of those mats are great. They’re durable. We usually do 45 minutes of technique and eight 5-minute rounds of sparring/grappling. We always start standing. Using wrestling takedowns or judo takedowns, three rounds of kickboxing and three rounds of kickboxing with takedowns. I love that tatami top.”

Pole Padding
The Grappling MMA mats have eliminated his need for the folding mats, but added that the pole pad is still a ”very needed piece” in his school, noting that it is often used as a circuit training tool.

”People use it to train on; kids kick it,” Sifu Damiano said. ”Sometimes I use that to line them up, and they can do some of their striking on that as part of the stations.”

A believer in ”time put in equals skill,” Sifu Damiano has definitely put in his time, and for the last five years, that time has been put in over Greatmats martial arts floors.

Centerline Martial Arts class on Greatmats Grappling MMA Mats and Greatmats Pole Paddding
Chris Damiano
Centerline Martial Arts
Destin FL 32550
For more on this topic please review our Martial Arts Mats product page.

World Champion Ellwanger ‘United’ with BJJ Excellence

Ellwanger Won’t Let Himself, or His Students, Be ‘Burned’ by Inferior Mats

Gracie United Video

By Brett Hart

A lifelong martial artist, Rafael Ellwanger, began testing out different disciplines at age 4 when his mother enrolled him in judo classes. After training in Tae Kwon Do, Kung Fu, Boxing, Muay Thai and Krav Maga, Ellwanger found his calling when he started training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu – 21 years ago.

In 1997, as a 21-year-old college student, Ellwanger fought in his first competition as a blue belt at the Pan-American Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Tournament in Hawaii and earned a bronze medal.

”That day, I realized I would like to be a martial artist for life,” Ellwanger said.

Rafael Ellwanger with Greatmats Martial Arts Mats

That wasn’t an easy dream to pursue, however, as being a martial artist in Brazil was a blue collar job, and it meant leaving a great computer science job. Although his mother has always been a great motivator for Rafael, his family was not particularly supportive of him pursuing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu as a career. This impeded Rafael’s confidence to jump head first into that dream. Nevertheless, that dream was meant to be.

Chasing the Dream
Training under Professor Ailson ”Jucao” Brites and Carlos Gracie, Jr., in Brasilia, Brazil, Ellwanger represented Gracie Barra for 17 years. On March 26, 2006, Rafael moved to the United States and, two weeks later, was awarded his black belt.

Carlos Gracie Jr and Rafael Ellwanger in 2011 Greatmats

The following year, Ellwanger began the South USA Grappling Association because, ”The jiu jitsu community need a well organized event in the area – and several events a year.”

”Our people used to travel to Georgia and Texas to compete,” he added. ”I invested all I had to provide a good event when nobody believed in BJJ in the south, and there was no money to be made. Now, we have several other players doing events here.”

Part of that investment meant getting new mats for his Gracie United Brazilian Jiu Jitsu gyms and SUGA tournaments. After much research, he chose Greatmats’ 1 5/8 inch thick Grappling MMA Mats. He said he chose Greatmats Grappling Mats because of their price, quality, lightweight nature, non-slip surface and most importantly – ”no mat burns.”

Gracie United Team Greatmats

In 2012, Ellwanger opted to leave Gracie Barra in order to rejoin forces with Jucao ”like the good old days.”

”He was always my mentor and a leader, and it did not feel right to be on different teams,” Ellwanger said. ”That was the best decision I ever made.”

The next year, Ellwanger won the 2013 International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation Black Belt Master 2 Division World Championship. And within six months, he was on top of the world again, earning the IBJJF #1 Black Belt world ranking.

Rafael Ellwanger 2006 Jiu Jitsu Championship Greatmats

Passing on the Legacy
Ellwanger, now a third degree black belt, owns two Louisiana-based gyms – one in Hammond/Ponchatoula, and one in Mandeville. On top of that, he now has 18 students who own and operate their own gyms under the the Gracie United banner – in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. Professor Jucao has another 20 locations across five countries – United States, Brazil, Spain, Portugal and Ireland.

Eighteen Gracie United gyms are now equipped with Greatmats Grappling MMA Mats – as well as Ellwanger’s federation.

”They are perfect for BJJ,” Ellwanger said. ”Not slippery, two colors and no mat burns!”

”I would guess we have 2,500 puzzle mats… from Greatmats. … We bought our mats in 2007, when we expanded from our very first gym. I decided to make the investment and… use the mats in the federation and the gym. Since then, I keep selling my used mats from the federation to the new school owners and rebuying new mats from Greatmats to replace them – and keep them new and nice.”

An additional benefit he’s found with Greatmats Grappling Mats is the ability for growth.

”I can always add or replace mats when I need it,” Ellwanger said. ”We move several locations and all gyms have a different shape and size. If you buy roll mats, you might have to cut it, and they usually come 6 feet wide – very hard to add and expand.”

High Impact Sport
As part of Rafael’s journey through BJJ he’s found that helping others achieve their goals is the most rewarding part.

”No matter what it is and how hard it would be, we are in the position to impact people’s lives,” he said.

His life has been impacted by the sport as well.

Rafael’s wife, Brea, is also a fighter and travels all over the world to compete. A few months after starting BJJ, however, she became pregnant and stopped training for almost two years.

Brea and Ariana Ellwanger Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Greatmats

Even so, ”she was there watching and paying attention,” Rafael said. ”When she came back, she was on fire. It was a lot of work to catch up from that two-year break.”

Brea was a 2015 world medalist and earned a gold medal at the 2016 IBJJF Pan American Championships Purple Master 1 Heavy Division. She was also ranked one of the top 15 purple belts in the world.

In the Blood
This BJJ power couple is keeping the sport in its bloodlines as well, as their two children also compete. Their son, Zion, is a 17-year-old blue belt, while the daughter, Ariana, is a 7-year-old gray belt.

”Both train and compete a lot,” Rafael said, noting that Zion is naturally talented and loves triangles while Ariana is an extremely hard worker.

Even though Rafael outranks the rest of his family, he says Brea is still the boss. And, as he approaches his 40th birthday, he is thankful for all of his mentors and training partners, including Brea, who helped him become the man he is today.

”It is very hard to be a husband and coach at the same time,” Rafael said. ”Things get tricky, and she gets mad sometimes. But it is all good – nothing a couple of nights on the couch would not fix.”

Learn about the Ellwanger’s 2016 South USA Grappling Association Tournament Season

Rafael Ellwanger
Gracie United BJJ
Ponchatoula LA 70454
For more on this topic please review our Grappling and MMA Mats product page.

Leading By Example with Zachary Hansen: Kyuki-Do Instructor

Kyuki-Do Instructor Competes in Throwing and Grappling Tournament

By Brett Hart

Martial Arts haven’t always been on American Kyuki-Do Federation (AKF) 2nd Dan Zachary Hansen’s radar. A former fiber optic communications professional, Mr. Hansen was introduced to Kyuki-Do seven years ago when his then 4-year old daughter, Olivia, won a free two-week trial at a 4K family fun night.

”She was having fun, and we weren’t in any other activities at the point, so we decided to enroll her. She excelled at it and enjoyed it,” Mr. Hansen said, ”I watched her for a year and said ‘That looks like way too much fun.”

Joining the fun
Zachary Hansen kyuki-do competition AKF GreatmatsAround that time Master Greg Garves cornered Mr. Hansen and encouraged him to enroll as well.

”I kind of blew him off and gave him the, ‘Check back in two weeks.”’ Mr. Hansen said. ”He held me accountable… and here I am seven years later. … It’s never something I envisioned myself doing, but I am thankful for it, and it’s been something my entire family has been able to do together.”

In fact Mr. Hansen, his wife, Bev, and daughter, Olivia, all promoted to their first degree black belt together. Mr. Hansen is now the owner and chief instructor of two academies – in New Richmond and River Falls, Wisconsin.

Competitive Spirit
Zachary Hansen grappling kyuki-do tournament AKF GreatmatsRecently the AKF, which blends multiple disciplines of martial arts into one, held its second ever throwing and grappling-centered tournament in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and Mr. Hansen decided to participate in both the judo and jiu jitsu brackets, earning first place in jiu jitsu and second place in judo.

”You want to put yourself out there,” Mr. Hansen said. ”I’m an instructor and an owner. I’ve got to be willing to put myself out there if I’m going to ask my students to do the same. Plus, being 38, I’m not exactly young, but I’m not old. (It’s one way to be) a good role model for my little bit older students, parents and other adults. You don’t have to be this ripped 20 year old to go out there and compete and have fun. It’s about the camaraderie and just the experience and learning about yourself.”

As someone who’s participated in folk style wrestling since second grade, it may seem this style of competition would be a natural fit for him, but Mr. Hansen said judo and jiu jitsu is a ”whole other can of worms.”

He enjoyed the change of pace from the traditional Kyuki-Do Tournaments, which focus mainly on forms, sparring and weapons.

”The grappling tournament is definitely more of a physical challenge, compared to the more mental challenge of our other style tournaments,” he said. ”Yes there’s sparring, but when you start getting into judo, jiu jitsu – the grappling stuff, there’s definitely a whole other level of physical involved. There’s strength and conditioning, especially the cardio workout. It’s a whole other level.”

As for the judo portion, he recognizes that he’s got a lot of work to do on this throws, but was happy to last a long as he did against an opponent he’s lost to a couple of times before.

”He’s definitely a good judo player,” Mr. Hansen said. ”He’s definitely got skill and knowledge. I survived longer than I thought I would. It goes to show, don’t cut yourself short against somebody else or based strictly on size because cardio comes into play and technique too. It’s not always strength and size.”

Ripple effect
Zachary Hansen kyuki-do tournament AKF GreatmatsFollowing his example, 15 of his students also took part in the tournament and enjoyed the experience.

”I had a young man who took last in both events, but as I was watching him, he was smiling and had a great time,” Mr. Hansen said. ”He was just there to have fun. Whether he won or lost, it didn’t affect his spirit. He had a great time, and he was excited that I was able to watch him compete. That meant a lot for him to say that, coming from a student.”

”(AKF federation events) paint a bigger picture of what Kyuki-Do is about outside of our academy and our local area and meet more of our extended Kyuki-Do family,” he added. ”I don’t use that word family lightly. It truly is an extended family. The camaraderie and the friendships that I’ve made are priceless, and they’re going to be here for a long time. It’s fun to walk into an event and know that your kids are in a safe environment, and they can just run about and know that someone’s going to be holding them accountable besides you. … To have that feeling and be in an environment like that is unbelievable and it’s almost unheard of. It’s one of my biggest reasons to promote the federation events.”

”For me its just the personal health benefits from being physical and training and just fun.”

While competition isn’t his primary focus, Mr. Hansen said, ”I’ve got that competitive bone in my body, so it’s a way for me to feed that competitiveness. I loved the tournaments and wrestling in high school, and this is a way to still kind of fulfill that childhood need.”

Learn more about American Kyuki-Do Federation Events and Athletes.

Zachary Hansen
AKF Martial Arts Academy
New Richmond WI 54017
For more on this topic please review our Grappling and MMA Mats product page.

Greatmats Gives Back to its Earliest Martial Arts Mats Customers

Greatmats Superfan Contest: Martial Arts Edition

Greatmats wants to honor its earliest martial arts mats customers through its Greatmats Superfan Contest.

Aug. 17, 2016 — Wisconsin-based specialty flooring company Greatmats is looking to honor its earliest martial arts mats customers. Founded in 1999, Greatmats has become one of the most respected supplier of martial arts mats in the United States. Starting with karate mats, Greatmats selection of martial arts mats has grown to including mats specifically designed for taekwondo, judo, jiu jitsu, grappling and mixed martial arts.

As a thank you to its earliest customers, Greatmats is offering an opportunity for anyone who purchased its martial arts mats at least 10 years ago to receive up to $100 in cash and have their story and/or business featured on greatmats.com and its social media site.

For more details on the contest and prizes, visit http://www.greatmats.com/martial-arts-mats/greamats-superfan-contest-martial-arts-edition.php.

Greatmats 1" karate mats

Greatmats entered the martial arts business with a line of karate mats.

Kyuki-Do Martial Arts of Elgin well represented at Spring Tournament of Champions

Elgin Kyuki-Do Team

Kyuki-Do Martial Arts of Elgin participants at 2016 AKF Spring Tournament of Champions

Greatmats AKF Champions

Yolanda Juaraz-Morales (left) tied with Drew McCurdy (center) for the 18 and over Grand Championship. Juarez-Morales later won a “Form Off” between the two.

While Kyuki-Do Martial Arts of Elgin (Illinois) provided ¼ of the nearly 200 participants at the American Kyuki-Do Federation’s Spring Tournament of Champions in Huntley, Ill., on May 7, approximately 15 academies participated in the festivities. One of the biggest surprises was the arrival of 19 competitors for AKF Lexington (Kentucky).

Greatmats AKF Family

The American Kyuki-Do Federation, sponsored by Greatmats, is a family friendly Martial Arts Federation.

Highlighting the Greatmats-sponsored event was the performances of Corrynn Anderson, Yolanda Juarez-Morales and Drew McCurdy. Anderson, of Huntley, won the 17 and under grand championship, while Juarez-Morales and McCurdy, both of Elgin, tied for the 18 and over grand championship which had to be decided by a “Form-Off at Kyuki-Do Martial Arts of Elgin on Saturday, May 14. Ms. Morales as the overwhelming winner.

Check out the next AKF event on Aug. 13, 2016 when the Summer Tournament of Champions comes to Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

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If you attend any 2016 AKF tournament, don’t forget to enter the photobomb contest by tournament sponsor Greatmats. Learn more about the contest at http://www.greatmats.com/martial-arts-mats/greatmats-photobomb-contest.php.

 

Greatmats offers $1,000 prize for Most Inspiring Martial Arts Story

Win $1000 for your inspiring Martial Arts Story

Most Inspiring Story $1,000 Giveaway: Greatmats Martial Arts Edition

MILLTOWN, WISC. – Every martial artist has a different reason for taking up the sport, and a different reason for sticking with it. For some, its all about fitness. Others have an unquenchable competitive spirit. Martial Arts are commonly taught for self defense and serve some who have been bullied or fear they might be. For some its more about inner peace or camaraderie. For whatever reason, Martial Arts have long helped people cope and conquer challenges in their lives.

Greatmats, a Wisconsin-based martial arts flooring leader, is seeking out inspiring martial arts stories to share how martial arts have served to help people overcome challenges.

The most inspiring story will win up to $1,000 in Greatmats credit or up to $700 in cash through Greatmats’ “Most Inspiring Story $1,000 Giveaway: Martial Arts Edition”. Greatmats is accepting submissions through Jan. 10, 2016.

For more details on the contest and how to enter, visit http://www.greatmats.com/gmats-giveaway.php.