best dart mats

Why do I Need a Dart Mat?

Dart Mats are an essential part of a dart players needed equipment. You may ask yourself why you would need a mat to play darts?

The answer is simple. It’s about protecting the space around your dart game set up.

If players aren’t careful they can do thousands worth of damages to floors and walls in nearby areas.

Whether you play with steel tip darts or plastic, don’t take a chance of damaging property in your home or business.

Steel tips gouge into hardwood floors, causing damage that’s both cosmetic and compromising to the structural integrity leading to future repairs.

Walls are not safe from damages either. Even soft tip darts can puncture sheet rock and leave the gaming area unsightly.

Protect Your Floors

Flooring is a very expensive investment, whether it be in a home or commercial setting. Constant abuse and penetration of the wood by dart tips can compromise the integrity of the wood and eventually be the cause of replacement or repair.

Having mats does not completely eliminate your risk of damage but it is the frontline of defense in maintaining a pristine dart area.

Competition/Toe Line

Having a mat with a toe line is an excellent way to keep your dart game both fair and competitive.

It’s much more professional and fun to have an accurate measurement and guide while you play darts. The added bonus of having a fair game makes a mat an even more necessary component to a great dart match.

Having a professional mat gives you the opportunity to switch between 7’6”, 7’9 ¼”, 8’, and 8’6” competitive play with ease and confidence.

What Should I Look For When Buying A Dart Mat?

There are lots of things to consider when purchasing a mat for your dart throwing pleasure. One notable thing to look for are the measured lines for competitive play. It affords you versatility in your choice of play.

There are many different games you can play with your dartboard and with proper guides, it becomes easier to change up your games for a more versatile gaming experience.

Another thing to note is the material in which the mat is composed of. Whatever kind you decide to go with needs to be compatible with the venue in which you decide to use it.

A thicker foam mat may become a walking hazard in a bar or high trafficked area. A slimmer profile composed of vinyl mat may be more suitable in that setting.

Price also is a factor worth noting. The mats tailored towards commercial use are going to be more expensive but also provide a sleeker more professional feel.

Types of Dart Mats

There are many different mats to choose from when deciding on your purchase. As previously stated it’s important to consider the setting.

Some mats designed with in-home use in mind are thicker foam composite for the purpose of solely protecting your floors. Other mats are more universal in design and function and come with guidelines and are more conscious of foot traffic in a public setting.

There are also mats designed to protect walls behind and around the dartboard itself.

Home Dart Mats

Mats designed for the purpose of home use are more basic in design and the prices reflect. These mats still carry great value as they enrich your dart throwing experience by providing both protection and guiding accuracy.

Industrial & Commercial Dart Mats

Industrial mats are designed with performance in mind. Typically they’re made with industrial strength, long lasting materials. Industrial mats give you the luxury of not curling up and laying perfectly flat on the floor.

Not only is it safer to walk around the dart throwing area, it has an overall professional appearance. The non-slip lay flat features are perfect for bars and gaming halls alike.

Floor Dart Mats

Floor mats are designed with a few things in mind. They are meant to keep the dart game fair and competitive.

They are also designed with the intent of keeping dart throwers safe from slipping and falling while playing. Floor mats are also a hardwood floor’s best friend by keeping them safe from unnecessary damage.

Wall Dart Mats

Wall mats aren’t as commonly seen as floor mats but are equally as vital to safe and fun dart playing.

Not everyone is an ace dart thrower and often times the wall surrounding the dartboard incurs on onslaught of abuse from steel and soft tip darts alike. Having a wall mat insulates your home or business with an extra layer of protection.

Top 5 Dart Marts of 2018

Now that you have a basic understanding of dart mats and how they work, let’s take a look at our top picks.

1. Viper Defender III Extended Length Dartboard Surround Wall Protector 

The Viper Defender III is an excellent addition to any dart game. It allows for added protection to the wall surrounding the dartboard. It protects and impressive 8.2 square foot of wall behind the dartboard.

This model fits 17.75 inch dartboards comfortably and looks professional accompanied by regulation dartboards. It is easy to assemble and requires no additional bracing.

Viper Defender III Extended Length Dartboard Surround Wall Protector

Pros

  • Large surface area of protection
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    Professional appearance
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    Keeps surrounding area safe from damage

Cons

  • Only fits 17.75” dartboards and will not accommodate 18” boards

2. Viper Padded Throw/Toe Line Dart Mat (Steel and Soft Tip Darts) 

The Viper Padded Throw/Toe line Dart Mat is a great addition to any home dart game. Its soft vinyl material protects against harmful “bounce outs”.

It is made to accommodate regulation steel tip games at 93 ¼” and soft tip games at 96”. Its soft material allows it to be rolled up and stored compactly almost anywhere. It also has non slip properties which make it safer and more fun to throw darts.

What makes this an even more impressive product is the fact that it is made one hundred percent in the United States of America.

Viper Padded Throw/Toe Line Dart Mat (Steel and Soft Tip Darts)

Pros

  • American made
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    Copmact
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    Storable
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    Non-slip
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    Protective

Cons

  • Not made for commercial use
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    Only has two measurements
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    Lines are black and difficult to see

3. ZAAP Heavy Duty Throw Line Rubber Dart Mat 

The ZAAP Heavy Duty Throw Line Rubber Dart Mat is a professional style mat with 4 oche lines. The measurements are 7’6”, 7’91/4”, 8’6”, and nine feet. It meets criteria for all different levels of players. It accommodates both competitive and friendly dart games.

It comes top of the line with anti-slip rubber. It also rolls up for safe and easy storage, which makes it portable and space conscious. Overall dimension is 118 x 24.5 inches and is .01 inches tall. Folded dimensions are 5x5x24 inches.

ZAAP Heavy Duty Throw Line Rubber Dart Mat

Pros

  • Easy to store
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    Comes with four different measurements

Cons

  • Not a competition style dart mat

4. Dart Mat by Shot Darts - Heavy-Duty 3mm Industrial Dart Mat 

The Dart Mat by Shot Darts is an industrial style dart mat that is perfect for any game room or bar/pool hall setting. It is a staggering three millimeters tall which makes it perfect for those high foot traffic areas.

Its low profile makes it less likely for people to stumble over and also lays perfectly flat with no roll up on the ends. Its non slip material makes it a safe addition to any home while offering protection for the floor.

It comes complete with soft tip dart lines as well as steel tip dart lines and is perfect for competitions. It is even endorsed by dart throwing champion and legend Chris White! This Dart mat is also compact and stores easily on any shelf or cabinet.

Dart Mat by Shot Darts - Heavy-Duty 3mm Industrial Dart Mat

Pros

  • Competition style mat
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    Industrial-grade rubber
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    Low profile
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    Portable
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    Endorsed by Chris White

Cons

  • A bit pricey

5. Winmau Soft-Feel Dart Mat 

The Winmau Soft-Feel Dart Mat is a modern and stylish piece of equipment. It comes with multiple oche lines and is made of a soft composite rubber that aids in protecting your floors.

Winmau Soft-Feel Dart Mat

Pros

  • Modern and stylish
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    Cool design

Cons

  • Not competition style

Conclusion

Lastly we would like to point out that all of these Mats are unique and crafted of the finest materials. There are many options out there for beginner dart players and professionals alike. Oftentimes, these dart mats combine the best of both worlds, competition and just plain fun. Any of these would make a great addition but make sure you do your research before you buy!