No matter what your skill level, when you play a game of darts more than a few shots will end up on the floor.
Between bounce-outs and missed shots, at least a few darts will end up in your floor. Every time your dart hits a hard flooring, you run the risk that it’s going to cause damage, either to your darts or the floor!
However, by using a quality darts mat, you can protect your home and your equipment.
They’re relatively cheap and serve a purpose, plus they last a lifetime. Most also provide a useful throw line to work from, so you can enjoy consistent play and fare scoring.
However, not every mat offers the same features, which is why you need to weigh the options available before you make a decision. Below, we’ve reviewed five of the best dart mats to help you make the best choice.
Best Dart Mats: Our Top Picks
- Viper Padded Dart Mat
- Winmau Xtreme Darts Mat
- Shot Darts Pro Mat
- Winmau OutShot Dart Mat
- Target Darts World Champion Darts Mat
Vipers’ dart mat works well with steel and electronic darts. Its soft vinyl material protects your floors from stray darts and bounce-outs, preventing accidental damage.
This heavy-duty mat has non-slip construction and measures 117” x 24” x ¼.” It rolls up for secure storage and is portable enough to carry with you while you travel! Keep in mind that it takes approximately four-hours for this mat to reach its full size.
Play from a regulation distance thanks to Viper’s embossed toe line, measured both for soft and steel darts. The toe line makes it easier to tell that you’re playing from the right distance and keeps everything fair while playing with friends.
The downside to this mat is its high price tag, though it’s a worthwhile investment if you’re serious about the game of darts. It’s relatively narrow so it doesn’t protect a large surface area, but it’s a useful tool to protect your flooring.
The Winmau Xtreme dart mat is a heavy-duty option that works perfectly in your home, club, or pub setting. It offers official tournaments oche measurements for accurate gameplay and a stylish yellow and black design.
This option lays flat on the floor and won’t curl up during your game. It easily rolls away for hassle-free storage so you can keep it on a shelf or in your closet while it’s not in use.
The Winmau Xtreme is a solid rubber choice that protects your floor from stray darts. The rubber material won’t slip or slide around on hardwood and holds up well under severe wear and tear.
The only problem with this mat is that it’s quite narrow. The narrow shape won’t catch every stray dart or bounce-out, but it certainly gets most of them.
The Shot Darts Pro mat is an industrial-grade rubber, making it an excellent product to consider! It’s 3” thick rubber material effectively protects your floors from stray darts and bounce-outs.
This mat is both used and endorsed by the pro player and US national champion, Chris White. It measures 9 ft x 9 in x 2 ft making this a reasonably sized mat for all your darting competitions.
The Shot Darts dart mat has high-visibility official throw line, for steel and soft dart tournaments. It doesn’t curl up while in use and is a breeze to roll away while not in use. Once you roll it up, you can easily store it away on a shelf or even take it with you if you’re playing at your friends’ house.
An issue with this mat is its strong rubber smell that’s off-putting for the first few games. This odor fades after a while, and eventually, it doesn’t smell at all.
Winmau’s Outshot is the first full-length fiber mat with a soft feel. Its anti-slip PVC design keeps this option perfectly in place throughout your game. This mat is lightweight and easy to roll-up so you can pack it away neatly while it’s not in use.
The Outshot offers precise regulation measurements and a convenient checkout chart to enhance your gameplay. Outshot is best used at home and contains a rubber which helps to make it last longer.
The issue here is that it won’t protect hardwood floors from pointed darts. . An easy solution to this is to place a piece of plywood underneath the mat. That way your hardwood has a shield and your darts won’t incur any damages when they hit the floor.
The Dart World Mat offers a 3 mm thick rubber build. It’s ideal for both home and professional play, making this the right choice for players of any skill level.
This mat is bulky so it won’t move out of place while you play. It’s perfect for use with hardwood floors and protects the flooring from damage caused by steel tip darts.
With 8-feet of throwing length and professionally measured throw lines, this mat helps you play accurately.
The rubber material protects your darts and keeps them from being damaged. Bounce-outs and missed shots won’t be a problem while using this product because it prevents any issues with your equipment.
As with other rubber items, the Target Darts World Champion Darts Mat has a rubber smell when first unpacked. This odor fades over time, and after a few games, you won’t even notice it anymore.
That wraps up our guide to the five best mats for playing darts. Now that you’ve read through the products, you’re probably wondering if you need a specific mat to use while you play and what the criteria were in our selections. Keep reading below for a more in-depth look at the reasons you should include a quality mat with your equipment, and what we examined while searching for the top products available.
Why you Should Buy a Darts Mat
Even professional players throw the occasional bounce-out or miss a shot now and then. When this happens, the stray dart ends up on the floor and often damages the surface when it falls.
By using a mat while you play, it protects your floors and prevents any unsightly holes and marks. You must cover the flooring because once it ends up with too many holes, it will cost you a lot to repair the damages.
Using a mat specifically designed for the game of darts also helps you adjust your throw line. Most have regulation throw line indicators that keep your gameplay accurate every time.
They also help to keep your feet stabilized while you throw. Having secure footing could mean the difference between landing a bullseye or missing the shot altogether.
Choosing the right mat might seem like a no-brainer, but there are a few things you should consider before deciding. The following are areas to think about while picking your next mat for playing darts;
How to Pick the Best Mat for Darts
The material makes a big difference with this kind of equipment! If the mat has the wrong elements, it won’t serve its purpose and will end up being nothing but a hassle!
What Materials are Available?
Foam: Foam mats are a solid choice and are usually cheaper than the other elements. Foam is a good material because it protects your floor and is also easier on your darts than wood or other hard surfaces. Hard surfaces can break your darts which is why foam is a better choice, especially for falling darts.
The bad thing about foam is that it flattens out quickly if you stand on it for a while. Flattened foam means your mat will end up too thin to offer much protection, giving it a shorter lifespan than certain other materials.
Vinyl: Vinyl is another standard fabric that can be quite effective when used correctly. A vinyl mat that has ample cushion will protect your flooring and won’t damage your darts no matter how often they bounce-out.
The downside to vinyl is that it shows signs of wear and your mat will have many unsightly holes through it after a few short games.
Rubber: Rubber mats are a great all-around solution! They are tough enough to withstand constant wear and won’t show too many holes. Rubber is a non-slip material, so it stays perfectly in place and won’t roll up while you play.
Rubber tends to smell strong, though, so your new mat will omit a strong odor for the first few games.
There are different features to look for in your dart mat that makes it a worthwhile investment.
Firstly, you want one that includes official regulation measurements. These will guide your game and help to keep things fair and consistent.
You also want a mat that is easy to store away. Options that roll up are always best because you can keep them in your closet or even on a shelf while it’s not in use.
A non-slip underlay is another vital element! Having this keeps it in place while you play and gives you stability while you shoot.
Most dart mats price similarly. But, you want to be sure that the item you choose gives you the most value for your money. Opting for heavy-duty materials is always a smart thing to do!
These materials will last longer and perform better than thin, cheaply constructed fabrics. Rubber is a durable choice that holds well on most floor surfaces.
You always want something that has clear and highly-visible throw lines and other measurement indicators. Most mats run a similar size but always opt for the largest available.
Using a larger one protects more floor space which lessens the chance of damages to both your home and equipment.
With dart equipment, certain brands stand out from the rest. You always want to opt for items designed by a reputable label because they’re well-made and will give you more hours of enjoyment.
Some of the top brands to look for are Viper, Winmau, and Arachnid. These are the brands included in professional settings and tournaments.
Using the same thing as the professionals mean that you’re choosing the highest quality available and it’s certainly worth paying a higher price to own.
While you’re playing darts, you must stand behind a marked line that’s a certain distance from the board. This line is known as an oche or toe-line.
Dart mats come in various lengths and will have pre-marked toe-lines for your convenience. The distance of the protector may vary and is typically between 8 to 10 feet long.
Ideally, you want the mat to cover a larger surface of the floor because this will provide more protection for the area between yourself and the board.
Most options are quite narrow, which limits the floor area that it covers. By choosing one that is wider, you get more coverage for bounce-outs or stray darts.
Types of Dart Mats
There are several different variations to choose from, including ones designed for home use. Home dart mats are thicker foam, strictly to protect your flooring.
While other styles will have additional features like guidelines and throw lines, these kinds of mats are often used for pubs and tournament playing, though you can easily use them at home if you prefer a more formal style of play.
Industrial and commercial dart mats offer a performance-geared design. They have heavy-duty industrial materials and last longer than your traditional options.
This industrial-style won’t curl up and will stay perfectly flat throughout your game.