The air track mat can make practicing hobbies such as gymnastics, cheerleading, and recreational activities as safe as possible. But this doesn’t happen automatically. To fully benefit from this great invention, there are particular safety measures you need to consider.
In this article, we will share various tips with you to take the most out of your air track mat. These tips will prevent injuries from happening. They will also guarantee you’re having a blast while getting the best results from exercising.
- Prepare Your Body
- Place And Set Up Your Air Track Mat the Right Way
- Don’t Bite More Than You Can Chew
- Water Is Your Best Friend
- Supervision Equals Safety – Especially With Children
- Take Care of Your Air Track Mat
1. Prepare Your Body
Before doing actual exercise routines on your air track mat, prepare your body first. A proper warm-up is the best preparation. One highly recommended warm-up formula is called RAMP, which comes from the words raise, activate, mobilize, and potentiate:
- Raise: increases the temperature of your muscles and core, gets your blood flow going, makes your muscles more elastic, and activates your neural.
- Activate: engages your muscles for the upcoming practice session.
- Mobilize: prepares the body parts, such as joints, you use in your movement patterns for the exercise.
- Potentiate: gradually increases the stress on your body to move you closer to the actual movements you do during your exercise.
2. Place And Set Up Your Air Track Mat the Right Way
The air track mat’s job is to guarantee you a safe place to practice and exercise. But if you don’t focus on the setup part or the placement of the mat isn’t ideal, safety will take a toll. To avoid injuries, it is also crucial to follow the instructions from the manufacturer when you set your mat up – for example, securely inflating the mat.
And not only that, but you also need to consider the placement of your air track mat. Always make sure there’s enough room on the sides and that you have a clear landing spot. Also, no sharp objects, furniture, or other obstructions should be close to the exercise area.
Taking care of the placement and setup is extremely crucial when trying tricks such as flips, tucks, and other aerial moves, as they require more space.
3. Don’t Bite More Than You Can Chew
If you are just starting with gymnastics, cheerleading, or even workout routines, don’t bite more than you can chew. Use your air track mat according to your skills. And when your technique develops, you can increase the difficulty level accordingly.
To avoid unnecessary injuries, focusing on your landings is crucial. With gymnasts, almost 70 % of injuries occur during a landing.
4. Water Is Your Best Friend
Water is your best friend is a saying that is more than accurate. No matter what kind of activities you’re doing, staying hydrated is always crucial. It keeps your brain and body fresh, which is critical when it comes to your safety.
5. Supervision Equals Safety – Especially With Children
If children are playing and having fun on an air track mat, someone needs to keep an eye on them. With activities as such, supervision always guarantees you the best safety in preventing falls and accidents.
The above applies to older kids and adults as well. If you or someone else is trying a challenging maneuver, you need an adult or a coach present.
6. Take Care of Your Air Track Mat
One of the best safety measures in the long term, if not the best, is taking care of your air track mat. Prevention is usually the best medicine, meaning keeping it clean from dirt, debris, and moisture.
The air track mat also requires regular inspection. And if you notice any damages, such as punctures, tears, or loose seams, fix them immediately.
Remember that no matter where you set up your air track mat, first check and even measure if there’s enough room around it. It also needs to be placed on a stable, dry, and clean surface. Then during the actual setup, follow the instructions from the manufacturer.
Also, remember that you are part of the safety equation as well. It means you shouldn’t try out tricks you don’t know how to do. Instead, practice the techniques first so that you are well-prepared.
Take also care of yourself and the air track mat. Do a proper warm-up, drink enough water, and check out regularly that there are no issues with the actual product.