What Tap Dancers Should Consider When Buying a Portable Tap Floor, Board, or Mat

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Published: 11th September 2009
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For those tap dancers serious about their profession, a portable tap floor, board, or mat is a critical part of the equipment that enables them to perfect their technique. Owning a portable practice floor gives tap dancers the chance to practice their moves outside a studio, honing their craft and raising their performance ability. There are many tap mats available on the market, and almost all of them seem to offer various advantages. This tends to make choosing the right tap board for your practice a struggle for many tap dancers who want to find ways of practicing outside the studio.

A good tap mat will have a number of qualities that help it stand out from the competition, and which should all be considered when considering making a purchase.


If a tap board isn't lightweight, it defeats the point of its being portable! Much like laptop computers, the lighter the board the more likely you are to take it with you when you travel or have competitions to rehearse for. Having a so-called portable tap board which isn't actually easy to slide into the car and take along wherever you go can put a damper on your practice, and defeat the purpose of buying the board in the first place. Also, consider that the board needs to be easy to carry into performance venues if used for that purpose.


Along with being lightweight, an ergonomic structure for practice floors is important. They should be easily transported and have easy methods of grip, to allow their owner to pick them up and carry them without strain. The last thing any dancer wants to do is find that although he or she has selected a practice board they think will suit their needs, they can't carry it more than a few steps with any level of comfort!


Doing a complicated tap routine can put a huge strain on your hips, knees, and ankles. When considering buying a portable tap dance floor, you should remember that you need the same kind of spring and shock absorption you would expect from a high-quality tap studio floor. As a dancer, taking care of your body should be your primary concern, and neglecting this important feature when considering tap boards can lead to discomfort, pain, and even injury. Make sure that the tap mats you are choosing from offer you protection from shock while dancing.


Part of the joy of watching a good tap routine is hearing the sounds of the dancer's feet as they strike the floor, and many dances require this resonance to reach their full effect. Like any other aspect of dance, this must be practiced, and dancers who select tap mats that don't fulfill this requirement will find that their practice sessions sound so different from their routines that it can actually undercut the practice they've put into learning their steps. Finding a tap board with great resonance which builds the suspense of your dance and allows you to have a realistic impression of the sounds your dancing will create is an important thing for any dancer to consider.


No tap mat should break the bank, and finding an affordable piece of equipment that will allow you to practice your dancing is not hard. Many affordable, high-quality mats are available to help you with your practice.

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