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How Anti-Fatigue Mats Can Help You Improve Productivity
Tuesday, 14 September 2021

Industries that rely on their staff working on their feet for sustained periods can benefit hugely from anti-fatigue matting. Standing still or being on your feet for long hours can cause leg and lower back issues including muscle and joint pain as well as problems related to poor blood circulation. Here’s our guide to how a good quality anti-fatigue mat can boost productivity in your workplace.

What is an anti-fatigue mat?

 
An industrial anti-fatigue mat has a very slight bounce to it. This forces the people standing on it to make micro-adjustments to their position and posture, which encourages better blood flow and eases the pressure on the back and legs that arises from standing still for too long.
 

Why should I get an anti-fatigue mat?

 
Pain and injuries from standing all day are a frequent cause of employee absence. Even if your staff member is not in enough pain to take the day off, the discomfort that they feel will heavily impact their productivity on the job, as well as their overall happiness and engagement. Anti-fatigue mats can alleviate these issues.
 

What should I look out for when I am purchasing an anti-fatigue mat?

Size

Your matting should be an appropriate size for the space and should not be so thick as to cause a trip hazard for people stepping on or off it. Many suppliers will be able to provide you with lengthy rolls of matting, custom sizes or even tile-based matting systems – meaning that you should find it relatively easy to source matting that fits your location and environment. Try to get matting that has a bevelled edge, as this will minimise tripping.

Surface

Anti-fatigue mats are available in a broad range of surface finishes – from perforated models that encourage liquids to drain away and can catch swarf and other large detritus through to heavy-duty diamond-patterned models that provide superior grip. Think about the kind of work you and your staff are engaged in, and get the right surface for your environment.

Material

This kind of matting is commonly available in rubber or vinyl-topped foam. Attributes to consider here are water resistance, durability and longevity. Rubber mats will typically suit heavy-duty requirements, will resist (and, frequently, drain) water and other liquids and will withstand high-traffic and long usage periods, whereas vinyl-topped foam can be more comfortable but is better suited to less intensive use in dry areas.
 
If you are working around oil, be sure to get a mat that is oil resistant, and if you have wheeled traffic (dollies, trolleys, wheelchairs etc) then make sure you get a mat that is suited for this use.

Edging

We’ve already discussed getting mats with a bevelled edge to reduce trip risks, but you can also consider sourcing a mat with a contrasting and high-visibility edge. A lot of suppliers can provide mats that are predominantly black or darker colours with a bright yellow perimeter that draws the eye and forces people to take notice of where the mat begins or ends – safeguarding the health and safety of your employees even further.
 
Author Bio: First Mats started life as safety matting specialists, but have since expanded to become a complete industrial and commercial supplies company. The focus of First Mats is to provide safety-focused products that improve the wellbeing of staff through quality approved products, backed up by extensive knowledge. www.firstmats.co.uk
 
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