In many manufacturing and industrial environments, different types of mats are used to increase employee safety. Examples are non-skid mats that prevent people from slipping or presence-sensing mats that keep workers from coming into contact with dangerous machinery. However, there are also special mats, called anti-fatigue mats, which are designed to make workers more comfortable when they must stand on their feet for many consecutive hours. Anti-fatigue mats offer more cushioning not only for comfort but also to improve circulation and absorb shock, helping to reduce muscle tension, aches, and general fatigue.
Standing on a hard surface for long periods of time can create more stress in the workplace and cause poor concentration and serious fatigue. Since fatigue and its related problems are factors in work-related accidents and injuries, anti-fatigue mats may actually make the overall environment safer, as well as improving worker performance, productivity, health, and morale.
Constructed from treated vinyl or rubber, foam, or vinyl sponge, most anti-fatigue mats are less than one inch (less than 25.4 millimeters) thick, and have a non-skid surface. They are usually non-flammable, and most have beveled edges to avoid trips and falls. Anti-fatigue mats can also be specially treated to resist moisture, chemicals, grease, and other elements, and they are available in a variety of sizes. If the exact size needed is unavailable, most anti-fatigue mats can easily be cut down to fit the space.
Anti-fatigue mats are available with special features for added protection, depending on the environment in which they will be used. Static-dissipating construction to avoid electric shock, mats that repel sparks for use by welders, and anti-microbial mats for clinics, dental offices, and hospitals are all examples of anti-fatigue mats with industry-specific construction. There are even low-voltage, heated anti-fatigue mats for colder environments.
Anti-fatigue mats are functional, but that does not mean they cannot be attractive as well. Many are available in different styles, depending on the surroundings, and they include special designs and colors to make them more aesthetically pleasing. These mats can be used in stores, restaurants, and salons, as well as in industrial or manufacturing environments. Special orders can even include company colors and the company logo. There is something available for nearly every setting.