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Tatami Mat: The Japanese floor mattress

tatami mat

Introduction to Tatami mats

Welcome to the world of the Tatami Mat. It’s a Japanese cultural treasure that combines elegance, functionality, and timeless beauty. These traditional floor mats have been an integral part of Japanese culture for centuries.

They have graced the floors of homes, tea houses, and even palaces.

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Table of Contents


Best tatami mats

Japanese Traditional Tatami Mat

  • Tatami Rug Mat – The thin memory foam mat is a perfect place to sit, lie, play or crawl.
  • Quality Material – The surface material of the tatami mat is natural rattan fibers, very smooth, the interior is filled with environmentally friendly high elastic sponge, 2CM thickness of EPE high-elastic cotton provides enough cushioning protection, soft and comfortable.
  • Foldable – The Japanese Tatami Mat is 180 180cm (70.87 180cm), Thickness: 0.79inch / 2cm. Patchwork design, you can easily pack the folding tatami mattress and take it with you. as such, you can carry one with you easily and it won’t take up much storage space. You can even take it to a picnic or a yoga class.
  • EASY TO CLEAN

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Tatami Mat Mattress Foldable

  • Made of high quality woven natural rattan fiber, which is very smooth and flat surface, and the soft interior filled with soft breathable high elastic memory foam mat and special non-slip bottom design to prevent moving.
  • Different sizes
  • Rattan mats can be assembled into any shape you want. The floor of the tatami mat is non-slip to better prevent the pad from moving.
  • Easy to clean – You just need to wipe the dust powder with a dry towel or soft cloth along the seams, then clean the surface of the mat with the wet towel and dry it in a ventilated place

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Health Benefits

The tatami mats provide a natural remedy for joint pain and is great for posture correction. These Japanese floor coverings, offer more than just an aesthetically pleasing touch.

They also provide many health benefits that have appreciated the Japanese for centuries. One of the most notable advantages is the relief they offer for joint pain.

Tatami mats have a cushioning effect that eases pressure on your knees, ankles, and back.

By distributing weight evenly across its surface, these mats help with alignment of the spine. And help to ease the discomfort caused by poor posture or stiff joints.

The soft yet firm surface allows the body to maintain its natural curvature.

This can improve spinal alignment during sleep and reduce muscular tension upon waking up.

It’s no wonder why many people who switch to sleeping on tatami beds find their mornings filled with newfound energy and vitality.

Natural Insulation Properties

During summer months, when temperatures soar in Japan’s hot and humid climate. The tatami rooms remain cool due to their insulating nature that keeps heat at bay. Also during chilly winter nights, tatami floors come to the rescue with their remarkable ability to retain warmth.

The unique combination of natural materials in tatami mats traps the heat. This means you can bid farewell to cold feet and shivers, as the tatami floor embraces you in gentle warmth.

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Tatami mats: Construction and Materials

Traditional materials used for Tatami Mats

The tatami mat are made using a variety of natural materials that have been used in Japan for centuries. The two primary materials used for making tatami mats are igusa(rush straw) and wara(rice straw). Igusa is the most used material due to its durability and smooth texture.

They have great moisture-absorbing properties. And it’s ideal for creating a comfortable and breathable surface.

Igusa (rush straw)

Igusa made from the marshy areas of Japan where it grows abundantly. The process of harvesting igusa involves cutting the mature & strong stalks during autumn.

The stalks are then selected based on their length and thickness. This to ensure uniformity in manufacturing tatami mats.

The raw igusa stems undergo meticulous cleaning processes to remove impurities. This is important before it’s being separated into thin strands.

Wara (rice straw)

Wara, obtained from rice plants after they have been harvested. And they possesses a slightly coarser texture compared to igusa.

After rice farmers gather the grains from their fields, they collect the leftover straw which would otherwise go to waste. They also undergo a drying processes before it can be used in tatami manufacturing.

Dimensions and Design

Standard size variations of the Tatami Mat

When it comes to Tatami Mats, there are different standard sizes available to suit various needs and preferences. One common size is the Jo, which represents six tatami mats combined. This size is often used in larger rooms like living areas or dining spaces.

It provides ample space for multiple activities, such as gatherings or laying out a traditional Japanese floor mattress for relaxation. Another popular size is the Gojo, which consists of five tatami mats joined together.

The Gojo is commonly found in smaller rooms or bedrooms, where its dimensions create a cozy and intimate atmosphere. It’s perfect for creating a serene setting for meditation or practicing yoga on a soft and supportive Japanese mat.

Etiquette guidelines when using Tatami Mats

When it comes to using Tatami Mats, there are a few etiquette guidelines to keep in mind. Whether you’re attending a traditional tea ceremony or simply gathering with friends in a room adorned with these beautiful mats, following the proper sitting positions is essential.

The most common position is seiza, where you kneel on the floor with your legs folded under your thighs and sit upright. This posture shows respect and attentiveness during formal occasions.

Rules for entering a room with tatamis

Entering a room with Tatami Mats requires some attention to detail. Before stepping onto the mats, it is customary to remove your shoes at the entrance. In Japanese culture, shoes are seen as unclean and bringing them onto the pristine tatamis would be considered disrespectful.

Instead, guests are provided with slippers or tabi socks to wear while walking on tatamis. When stepping onto tatami floor, it’s important not to step directly on the edges of the mats (known as tana).

This can cause damage over time and spoil the appearance of these delicate Japanese mats. Instead, aim to step in the center of each mat as you move through the room.

Maintenance tips to preserve the quality of Tatami Mats

To ensure longevity and preserve their beauty, proper maintenance techniques should be employed for Tatami Mats. Regular cleaning is crucial but should be done gently to avoid damaging the delicate materials used in their construction.

Start by lightly brushing off any loose dirt or debris from the surface using a soft broom or vacuum cleaner attachment. For more thorough cleaning, wipe down your Tatami Mats using a slightly damp cloth soaked in water mixed with mild soap or natural cleaners like vinegar or lemon juice.

Avoid excessive moisture which can cause the mats to warp. Allow the mats to air dry completely before placing any furniture or bedding on them.

In addition, it’s important to protect Tatami Mats from direct sunlight exposure. Prolonged exposure can cause the materials to fade and become brittle over time.

To prevent this, consider using curtains or blinds on windows that face the Tatami Mats or applying UV-protective film on glass surfaces. Taking these simple yet effective maintenance measures will help ensure that your Tatami Mats retain their authenticity, durability, and aesthetic appeal for years to come.

Definition and origin of Japanese Tatami Mat

Tatami mats are handcrafted floor coverings made from natural materials such as igusa (rush straw) or wara (rice straw). These mats are carefully woven together to create a firm yet cushioned surface known for its comfort and durability. The word “tatami” itself originates from the Japanese verb “tatamu,” meaning “to fold” or “to pile.” This etymology reflects their historic use as portable matting material that could be easily folded away when not in use or piled up for additional insulation during colder seasons.

The history of tatami mats traces back over 1,000 years ago to ancient Japan. Initially used exclusively by nobility, they gradually spread throughout society during the Heian period (794-1185).

By the Muromachi period (1336-1573), tatami mat became increasingly popular among commoners as well. Throughout history, these mats evolved both in design and construction techniques while maintaining their essential features.

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