If you love going to the gym for your martial arts workouts, you might want to consider how affordable a home studio can really be. Extend your training by installing a place at home where you can continue to practice after the gym closes.
First step is to decide on the space you can afford to allocate to the practice area. A dedicated space will feel intentional – a feel that can contribute to the sincerity of your practice. So let’s optimize this space from the ground up. Do you need just enough space for a bag or some other limited area practice like tai chi? Or are you planning on working out with a partner? Got some throws in mind? Or maybe you need a combination of practice and meditation space? Make sure you set aside enough safe space for whatever your practice will involve. You can always expand, but make sure your home studio meets your needs from the get-go, or you’ll find you don’t use it.
Take out anything that will be an obstruction, including things on walls or hanging from the ceiling. No need to ruin a good workout by stepping on a toy or whacking the ceiling fan. When the space is clear, put down your mats. The mats will depend on your practice: throws, grappling, and high-intensity activities will need some serious padding. Go for a good thick mat. Don’t go cheap here, because if you get injured right off the bat because your mats aren’t thick enough to cushion your landings, an injury could negate the whole point of the home studio. Thicker mats are a good idea if kids will be practicing in the area, too, for obvious reasons. If you don’t need quite so much padding, a thinner mat will still absorb a little impact and make the practice easier on the joints. Good mats, regardless of their thickness, will also serve to protect your existing floors. Put the mats down over a hard surface like concrete, hardwood, or tile, never over carpet. If your space is carpeted, pull it up. You can’t afford to lose your balance in a nice soft pile.
That’s all you need to get going. Space and protection. Add whatever equipment you want, and practice what you learn at the gym in your very own home martial studio.