Mounting gym mirrors from the floor up without a gap looks great but is that necessary or even safe? There are a few surprising things you should know before mounting a gym mirror.
Gym mirrors should not start from the floor for practical and safety reasons. Leaving a 9” gap prevents damage and allows for easier cleaning. Mounting the mirror 1.5′ to 2′ from the floor still allows you to see your whole body while saving money because a smaller mirror can be used.
Let’s get into the details of why those dimensions work and how that helps you save money in more than one way.
Should Gym Mirrors Start From The Floor?
In most cases, gym mirrors should not start on the floor. It is recommended to leave a small gap between the bottom of the mirror and the floor for practical and safety reasons. This gap helps to prevent the mirror from getting damaged or cracked due to potential impacts or contact with the floor.
Think about it, how often do you drop your barbell or dumbbells after a heavy set? Doing that sometimes means the weights roll away. That means they can roll into the mirror which is easily broken that way. I’ve actually done that in a commercial gym when I started lifting a long time ago… the manager wasn’t amused. But it could have easily been avoided if the mirror just started a little higher.
Additionally, leaving a gap makes it easier to clean the mirror and prevents it from collecting dirt or moisture from the floor.
You might be worried that not having the mirror in your workout room going all the way down might cut off your feet from vision. However, because of how light works, that’s not the case. As long as your eyes are higher than your feet, you don’t need the bottom part to see them.
Need a high-quality gym mirror that’s large and affordable? Click the link to find my recommendation.
How High Should You Mount a Gym Mirror Of The Floor?
So if going all the way down to the floor isn’t a good idea, how high should you mount the mirror?
There are two ways to look at this question. What is practical and what is good for aesthetics?
It’s recommended to always leave a 9” gap at the bottom for safety reasons. However, you can mount the mirror 1.5’ from the floor and still see your whole body. In larger gyms where you can stand a little further away from the mirror even a 2’ gap is fine.
For more information about the right mounting location for gym mirrors, click the link to find an in-depth article.
There is one requirement: You want to be able to see your whole body from where you’re standing/sitting. Ideally, you want the smallest mirror that can do this since that will be the cheapest. Mounting at the right height can save you some cash.
On many upper body exercises you can get away with only seeing the upper body but on lower/full body exercises, you want to be able to see everything. Since in most home gyms, you’ll just have a single mirror, we want to be able to see the whole body from feet to hands stretched out above the head.
Standing at least 4’ away, you can mount the mirror 1.5’ from the floor. If you can stand further away, even 2’ from the floor is fine. You’ll still be able to see your feet. Short people can use a 5’ tall mirror when mounted 1.5’ – 2’ from the floor while taller people should use a 6’ tall mirror. That means the top of the mirror is 7’-8’ from the floor.
For aesthetics, you can make different decisions than practicality dictates. Of course, it’s a good idea to keep a little gap at the bottom for safety but you can go all the way down to the floor if you like, it’s just not a great idea. Especially it’s combined with the mirror going all the way up to the ceiling, which creates a cool, clean, minimalist look. A big mirror wall creates a feeling of space and brightness in a gym.
If you want the mirror to go all the way down to the floor, at least leave a little gap at the bottom to protect from things rolling into the mirror. This happens easier and more often than you’d think. That small sacrifice in design can save you a whole lot of stress and money. A little wooden plinth at the bottom can absorb a decent impact and can be painted any color you like to get the decor. Or you can leave it empty.
A 9” tall plinth will catch even the tallest weight plates (45 lbs. plates are 17.7” tall which means they will hit the wall at 8.85”). Do keep your gym flooring in mind. Gym flooring is thick so you need the plinth to rise 9” above the flooring.
If you want to start higher than 2’ from the floor for aesthetic reasons, you risk cutting off too much of the vision which makes the mirrors a lot less useful.
Not sure how to choose the right mirror? Here’s an article that outlines the 6 key features a gym mirror should have.