How to Make a Wrestling Mat
A wrestling mat is made of sheets of foam rubber covered in vinyl. If you are looking to construct a wresting mat for your home, or perhaps a local gym or rec center, know that this is a very large project. The smallest size mat you can make should be at least 12 feet square, and you should make it larger if at all possible. This mat only requires very large materials to make such a mat from, but also plenty of work space available to assemble it.
Cut a large piece of foam into a sheet 12 by 12 feet square. There are two types of foam you can use: Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) or trocellen foam. PVC is recommended, and either foam type should be about 1 inch thick. You can cut the foam into multiple sheets that will form a square when put together.
Cut large sheets of 24-oz. vinyl into pieces that will cover all your foam pieces. Each vinyl piece should be the exact same size as the foam pieces. You need two sheets of vinyl for every sheet of foam because you're covering both sides of the foam. Line one full set of the vinyl pieces on the floor to simulate the mat surface.
Tape a wrestling circle onto the mat surface you laid out. The circle should be centered in the ring with a circumference of 10 feet using tape that is 1 inch wide. In the center of the circle, tape down starting lines that are parallel with one edge of the mat, 3 feet long and 10 inches apart. You will need to cut the circle/lines in places where the sheets separate.
Glue the bottom vinyl pieces (the ones without the circle and markings) to the bottom side of the foam pieces. You need a strong adhesive that will permanently affix the vinyl to the foam. Glue the top vinyl pieces to the top side of the foam.
Store rolls of adhesive tape that you can use to tape the mat pieces together when in use, thus preventing them from sliding apart from one another. You need tape that will firmly hold the pieces in place but can be removed easily after use. You may also want colored tape that is the same shade as the vinyl.
A full regulation mat (like the ones used in high school and college wrestling) needs to be much larger. While the circle and starting lines are the same. the complete mat needs to be 38 to 42 inches square.
- A full regulation mat (like the ones used in high school and college wrestling) needs to be much larger. While the circle and starting lines are the same. the complete mat needs to be 38 to 42 inches square.
Chris Moore has been contributing to eHow since 2007 and is a member of the DFW Writers' Workshop. He received a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from the University of Texas-Arlington.