T Nation

Cracking the Concrete Floor


I workout at home in the basement with a standard North American floating slab concrete floor. Has anyone ever dropped a weight and cracked the floor?
I do squats and 400ish lbs deads and have never had to dump the weight and I wonder how much the floor can take. I do have a rubber mat found at all gyms as protection, but it isn't that thick compared to 400 lbs imo.

I want to start cleans/snatches in my routine but I want to be able to drop the weight if I have too. I am a little worried abut what might happen if I do have to dump it from shoulder height.

So, how hard/easy is it to break the floor?
What can be done (in addition to the mat) to protect the floor?



There are rubber mats used for padding the bottom of horse trailers/stalls. They are about 3/4" - 1" thick and tough as hell. You can also build a platform pretty inexpensively. I beleive Mike Robertson wrote a mini article on it somewhere on this site. Otherwise search the web for designs then head to the hardware store.


That's the mat i currently have. But i'm not sure how much it can absorb. Obviously there is a difference if the weight lands flat or on one edge of a weight, but there must be a way to know what the dampening effect of the mats is, ie. how much it can absorb per square inch.


I really don't think it'll be a problem for the floor with one of those rubber mats.

If you don't have bumper plates though, you might tear up your weights w/ or w/o a platform.


It really depends on how strong the concrete is. Older concrete usually = stronger. I really wouldn't worry about it, you would probably need a jack hammer to seriously chip it.


Building a platform would be the best. For a real simple one, just put a sheet or two of 3/4" oak plywood underneath the rubber mats and screw it all together with drywall screws.


good one, i might try that.


With no protection, it has the risk of chipping. I don't think a large crack would form, unless it is thin concrete. Like you said, it all depends on the angle. So yes, I think it would be possible (unlikely) to crack/chip the concrete.