The 5 Best Dart Mats To Protect Your Floor

One of the first things you learn when playing darts is that not every throw is going to hit the bullseye, or even the dartboard. Because of this, it is important to protect the surfaces around your dartboard so they don’t get damaged.

Most people first think of protecting the wall around their dartboard, but it is equally important to protect your floor, and the best way to do this is with a dart mat

At a Glance: The Top Rated Dart Mats

If you’re in a rush, we’ve put together a quick list of our current favorite dart mats. You can find full reviews for each of these later on in the article. 

  1. Viper Padded Throw/Toe Line Dart Mat
  2. Target Darts World Champion Dart Mat
  3. Shot! Darts Professional Dart Mat
  4. ZAAP Heavy Duty Throw Line Rubber Dart Mat
  5. Dart World Let’s Play Dart Mat

Why You Need a Dart Mat

Mats are one of the most important pieces of equipment when playing darts. You see them in all professional competitions and recreational spaces where darts are played.

You may be wondering why you need a mat to play darts. There are three main reasons why mats are considered essential to any darts game. 

Protect Your Floors

The biggest, and most obvious, reason why you would need a dart mat is to protect the floor between you (the thrower) and the dartboard. 

Darts is not the easiest game to play, and you will not land a dart in the dartboard every time. Some darts could bounce off of the board and fall to the floor. If they do bounce off, then they are most likely going to fall on the floor directly in front of the dartboard. 

It is this area that a dart mat covers. Most mats are 2 feet wide, or 61 centimeters, which is wider than the standard dartboard size of 18 inches, or 45 centimeters. This means that most mats protect from darts that bounce out even at an angle. 

Floors are often a very expensive project to install, maintain, and update. We would recommend spending the money on a mat because it will be much cheaper than redoing a whole floor due to punctures or dents.

Protect Your Darts

The second reason why you should invest in a dart mat is because not only does it protect your floors from damage, but it also protects your darts from bending, getting dull, or breaking when they hit the floor. 

Flooring, and especially games room flooring, is made from hard materials so that it can last a very long time. For example, hardwood, concrete, or tile floors are very common. All of these can permanently ruin a dart with a single bounce out. A dart mat helps mitigate this damage, so you don’t have to buy a new set of darts or dart tips every time you want to play. 

Again, a dart mat does cost money, but it is still cheaper than buying a new dart set every week or two. 

Comes with a Built-In Toe Line

The first two reasons that you should get a dart mat are practical – it will protect both your floor and your darts from wear and tear throughout the game. The third reason in favor of a dart mat is aesthetic – they often come with a toe line (also called an oche) marked on the mat. 

The oche is the line that the throwing player must stand behind when playing a regulation game of darts. It is approximately 93 inches away from a spot on the floor directly below the dartboard, or 116 inches if measured directly from the bullseye. If this sounds complicated, that’s because it is.

A good dart mat has the toe line marked on it. This takes all of the guesswork and measurement out of hanging up your dartboard and setting up the playing area. All you have to do is line up the mat with the bottom of the board, and step up to the line! You’re ready to play just like that.

How to Choose the Right Dart Mat for You

When it comes to choosing the right dart mat, here are a few differences to look for and choose which type of mat and which features would be right for your situation. 

Materials

Dart mats can come in a few different materials, so make sure you know which material would work best for your playing location. 

Foam

Foam is the most inexpensive material for a dart mat, and it provides good protection for your floors. However, in order for it to best protect the floor, it is often very thick, and can be quite difficult to lay down perfectly flat. 

Because of this, it is not ideal for areas with high foot traffic, such as public locations or an often-used area of the house. People could trip over it, and if it is walked on enough the foam can flatten over time, losing its effectiveness. However, for a home games room set up, it would work perfectly fine.

Vinyl

Dart mats made from vinyl are more expensive than foam ones, but are definitely worth the upgrade. Vinyl is soft and comfortable to walk on, and it won’t flatten underfoot. It also has a much thinner profile, making it less of a walking hazard. 

A vinyl dart mat provides great floor protection, and it also is non-slip so there’s so worry about it coming out of position. However, it does easily show dart holes when it gets hit, so even though it lasts a long time it might look a bit damaged fairly quickly. 

Rubber

Rubber is the optimal material for a dart mat. Most professional dart players use rubber mats. Rubber dart mats are roughly the same price as vinyl mats, and are even thinner. They provide great protection for their entire coverage area, and also feature a non-slip bottom layer. 

Even though they are so thin, rubber is strong enough to protect your floors from any falling darts, and they lay perfectly flat as well. However, rubber tends to have a stronger smell than vinyl, and so a new rubber mat might smell for the first few games. 

Floor Surface and Non-Slip Design

The surface of the floor you are going to play on is an important thing to note. For example, carpeted floors are hard to grip, meaning the non-slip underlay might not be as effective. In fact, foam is probably the best choice for a carpeted floor, followed by vinyl. Rubber mats don’t work as well as designed on carpet. 

With a hard floor, such as hardwood, concrete, or tiles, the non-slip underlay of a rubber mat becomes much more effective and useful. 

Toe Lines – Visibility and Accuracy 

Another prominent feature to take into account when choosing a mat is the toe line design it comes with. Firstly, you don’t want a mat that doesn’t have a marked toe line. They’re just not useful. 

Another thing to note is the toe line should be easily visible, as this makes the game so much easier to play and to keep in line with the rules. Don’t forget to check reviews to see if the lines are accurate as well! Some cheaper options could have incorrect measurements. 

Ease of Use and Storage

When looking for a dart mat, it would be ideal to find one that is easy to set up and store. Some mats don’t roll up, so you have to leave them out all the time. If you aren’t going to move your mat at all, then this option would suit you, but if you want to move it or remove it when you’re done playing, we recommend a mat that rolls up and can be stored away.

However, mats that are constantly rolled up and unrolled could start to curl. This could lead to tripping or inaccurately toe lines. So, if this is important to you, you might want to opt for a non-curling mat. 

Dart Mat Reviews – The 5 Top Dart Mats in 2023

Here are our recommendations for the five best dart mats you could buy to protect your floor and make your games room more complete. 

#1. Viper Padded Throw/Toe Line Dart Mat

Sale
Viper by GLD Products Padded Throw/Toe Line Dart Mat (Steel and Soft Tip Darts) , Black, 117" Length...
  • Made of soft, cushioned vinyl, the Viper padded throw line dart mat protecting your floors from bounce outs
  • Heavy-duty, non-slip mat measures 117" L x 24" W x 1/4" D
  • Can be easily rolled up for storage in-between use

The Viper Padded Dart Mat is made from soft, cushioned vinyl, making it very comfortable to walk on and stand on. This will help your darts games last for hours! Your feet and back will thank you later. 

It is 9 feet, 9 inches, or 3 meters, long when laid flat, which gives you optimal protection for the entire length of floor between you and the dartboard. Even if you drop the dart when you’re just standing around, the mat will protect your floor! It is also only ¼ of an inch high, or 6 millimeters! No need to worry about anyone tripping over it as they pass. It also comes with patented “roll flex” material, meaning it can be easily rolled up and stored in a closet when you’re done with it.

It has a non-slip underlay and embossed toe lines, so every time you step up to throw you know that you have an accurate and standard distance to throw from. This way the game is more fair for everyone involved. Also, because the oches are embossed rather than marked on, there’s no worry that they can be scuffed off or worn out, so you will always be able to see them!

Pros

  • Soft, comfortable vinyl
  • “Roll Flex” material for easy and quick storage
  • Embossed toe lines for accurate and fair throwing

Cons

  • Toe lines are embossed, so not overly easy to see, but after awhile you get used to it
  • Needs 4 hour “break in” period
  • Expensive

#2. Target Darts World Champion Dart Mat

Pros

  • Three different throw lines to cover every variation of darts game
  • Made from a lightweight, odorless fabric
  • Less expensive than other mats

Cons

  • Not vinyl or industrial grade rubber, so protection is limited

#3. Shot! Darts Professional Dart Mat

Shot Darts Dart Mat with Throw Line - Dart Points and Flooring Protector, Non-Curling & Shock...
  • Industrial Grade Rubber—A professional, heavy-duty dart mat to protect your floor from stray darts; at 20 pounds, this dart mat with throw lines won't move or slide on the floor & will stay firmly
  • Non-Curling Dart Mat—Nearly 10 feet long and 2 feet wide, the portable dart mat does not curl up at the ends, which means there are no annoying break-in periods needed; use it right away
  • Shock Absorbing—At a solid 3mm thickness, this dartboard rubber mat cushions and provides comfort underfoot game after game; combat fatigue & play at your best; moreover, its slip-resistant

Pros

  • Very low profile, only 3 millimeters thick
  • Very durable and made from industrial grade rubber for maximum protection
  • A non-curling feature that will make it always lie down flat

Cons

  • High cost

#4. ZAAP Heavy Duty Throw Line Rubber Dart Mat

ZAAP Heavy Duty Darts Mat with Throw Lines - Suitable for All Dart Types
  • Professional mat with 4 printed oche lines (7'6", 7' 9 1/4", 8'0" and 8'6")
  • Durable anti-slip rubber
  • Rolls up for easy storage

Pros

  • Strong, industrial grade rubber for ultimate protection
  • Anti-slip design to keep the mat in place
  • Four oche lines, so it is suitable for all types of dart games

Cons

  • Strong and lingering rubber smell

#5. Dart World Let’s Play Dart Mat

Dart World Let's Play Dart Mat 47635 - Rubber Dart Mat Protect Your Floors and Improve Your Aim
  • Protect Your Floors: This rubber dart mat provides a protective layer between your darts and your floor, preventing damage to hardwood, tile, carpet, and other surfaces.
  • Improved Aim: The mat features a printed set of game rules and regulation distances for popular dart games, which can help improve your accuracy and precision.
  • Non-Slip Surface: The rubber material provides a non-slip surface that keeps the mat securely in place while you play.

Pros

  • 9 feet, 10 inches long for protection the entire length of the throwing area
  • Non-slip underlay and micro-grip design for better stability 
  • Visible oche lines for accuracy and fairness in playing

Cons

  • Oche lines aren’t raised so they could be scuffed out over time

FAQs

What are the lines on a Dart Mat?

These lines are called the oche, or toe lines. These lines mark the distance from where you are supposed to throw the dart on a regulation size dartboard. There are two different distances, one for steel tip darts and one for soft tip darts. This is why there are often multiple toe lines on a dart mat.

How far is the throw line in darts? 

The distance from the throwline to the dartboard is different for steel tip and soft tips darts. For steel tip darts, the oche (throw line) distance is 7 feet, 9 ¼ inches, or 237 centimeters, to the floor directly below the dartboard. For soft tip darts, this distance is 8 feet, or 244 centimeters. 

If you’re measuring diagonally from the bullseye of the dartboard to the oche, the distance for steel tip darts is 9 feet, 7 ⅜ inches, or 293 centimeters, and the distance for soft tip darts is 9 feet, 9 ½ inches, or 298.5 centimeters. 

How Can I Protect the Wall Behind my Dartboard? 

The best product you can get to hang behind the dartboard to protect your wall is called a surround, which is a large backboard that catches miss-thrown darts. These come in a variety of colors, shapes, and materials, so you can personalize one to fit your space. Surrounds are necessary to keep your wall undamaged.

Conclusion: Why Dart Mat Should You Buy? 

If you still haven’t made up your mind about which dart mat to get, we would recommend the Viper Padded Throw/Toe Line Dart Mat. Viper is one of the most trusted names in the darts world, and this mat is no exception, as it is one of the best selling dart mats out there. With the soft, comfortable vinyl and embossed dual oches, it is easy to play on, and it is easy and safe to store rolled up in a closet.

Sale
Viper by GLD Products Padded Throw/Toe Line Dart Mat (Steel and Soft Tip Darts) , Black, 117" Length...
  • Made of soft, cushioned vinyl, the Viper padded throw line dart mat protecting your floors from bounce outs
  • Heavy-duty, non-slip mat measures 117" L x 24" W x 1/4" D
  • Can be easily rolled up for storage in-between use