What are they?
Anti Fatigue Mats can be found in the home or the workplace. Simply, they are mats designed to reduce the stresses on the body when standing for a long period of time on hard surfaces. When we stand for a long time, our body becomes fatigued and this can lead to a wide range of health problems over time. Check out our article which aknowledges the increased interest in anti fatigue matting, and possible reasons for why this is here...
When And Where Should They Be Used?
In the home, they are commonly found in areas such as the kitchen where people can be stood for a long time when cooking, preparing food or washing up. Home versions of these mats are usually quite small and can be made from sorf materials such as memory foam, to more dense materials such as rubber.
Anti Fatigue Mats and rubber matting in the workplace are often found in areas such as production lines in factories, workstations and other areas where employees are standing for the majority of their job. Generally speaking, these mats are usually made from stronger materials as they have to endure much harsher environments. Depending on the application and environment, these materials can range from rubber, PVC closed cell foam, polypropylene and nitrile. In an environment that involves grease or certain chemicals but isn’t too demanding, you may find them manufactured from rubber mixed and nitrile (combined or 100% nitrile). These are a great combination of materials as the mat guarantees to perform well, and the costs remain low.
These ergonomic mats aren’t just found in factories and the home. As people have become increasingly aware of their benefits, they are also now found in areas such as trade shows for floor coverings, hospitals, dentists and many more public are private environments.
Things To Consider
Workers that stand in production lines or at workstations all day do not get much of a chance to move around, adjust their body positioning and get the blood pumping around the body. These ergonomic mats are designed to encourage the body to make constant adjustments in its positioning which increases blood flow. We feel it is important to state that although they do provide a wealth of health benefits and offer invaluable support to the body, they do not completely eliminate all risks associated with standing up all day. Think about your employees at a workstation or a production line. They may be standing in an awkward position leaning over their workspace to achieve their tasks. This can cause postural issues over time, which is an issue that no type of rubber mat can cater for, so we would like to encourage these employees to remember to take a minute every so often to stretch out all aches and pains frequently.
Anti Fatigue Mats are a great solution as they will last for a very long time. They come in all shapes and sizes so they can fit the smallest workstation area, to covering 22m length production lines. However, if you do not want to or cannot currently invest in them, ensure that you support your workers by providing them with appropriate footwear. Even though footwear doesn’t give you quite the same benefits as Anti Fatigue Mats, they can still provide good support and reduce the onset on fatigue and we still highly recommend them. Ensure that you look for a good arch and heel support while providing comfort to the user. As shoes can become uncomfortable, it is also advisable to make sure the insoles are cushioned and non-slip.
The Bottom Line
Anti Fatigue Mats really are a great product to have in the workplace. Once in place the benefits are easy to see. They reduce health complications associated with standing for a long time, increase concentration and therefore production, and ultimately leave you with a very happy workforce – but the best part, they won’t leave a burning hole in your wallet.
Did you find this artcile interesting? View our Anti Fatigue Mats Hub Page for more discussion on anti fatigue mats.