What it is a Tatami Room and What is its Purpose?

Source: japanobjects.com

A tatami room is a traditional Japanese room with tatami mats on the floor. Tatami are straw-stuffed, woven reed mats that can be found in most traditional Japanese rooms and houses. The word “tatami” means “bamboo mat.”

The what is a tatami room used for is a traditional Japanese flooring. It is made of straw, rice paper, and wood. Tatami rooms are typically used as living spaces in traditional Japanese homes.

Tatami Room

A tatami room, also known as a washitsu, is a staple of Japanese interior design. These chambers were formerly considered a symbol of grandeur, but now they are used as study spaces in temples and as sleeping or living quarters in houses. Tatami rooms, according to Hunker.com, can introduce Asian culture into any house with their basic furniture and open environment.


The term tatami comes from the Japanese verb tatamu, which meaning “to fold.” The mat is composed of rice straw and rush grass. The inside is lined with rice straw, while the outside is covered with woven rush grass. A simple border cloth called as here runs around the edge of the rush grass covering and is made of hem material. The surface of tatami mats is solid, soft, and rigid. Tatami mats were traditionally made from rice straw and sized 3 feet by 6 feet in pad form. To make it more pleasant to relax on the flooring, Japanese ladies and men slept or sat on the pads. When the mats were not in use, they were typically piled or folded. They have been around since the ninth century and have served as a sign of social prestige. Commoners typically sat on the bare floorboards since only the wealthy could afford them.


In addition to the traditional mats, tatami rooms include futons, a low ceiling or cushions for rice paper curtains, furniture, and thin privacy screens known as shoji. As tatami rooms grew in popularity and more people could afford them, some designers began to utilize several tatami mats to cover whole floors, much like carpeting. Modern mats are constructed of more durable materials and are simpler to clean than rice straw mats. It is still not advised to use them as floor coverings in high-traffic areas. Nonetheless, furniture should not be placed on them.


Tatami rooms have an open sense to them, which is intended to promote relaxation and peace of mind. Tatami chambers were traditionally used to entertain guests, perform tea rituals, and house religious alters in ancient Japanese culture. The room’s open architecture, minimal décor, and straw matting also served to keep the summer heat at bay. Tatami rooms are often utilized as sleeping quarters or living rooms nowadays. Because of its airiness and simple decor, some can serve as meditative places or yoga studios.

Fun facts

Because tatami mats were revered, individuals typically removed their shoes before entering a tatami room. Mats, according to Findmats.com, are still entrenched in Japanese society today. The quantity of tatami mats that can fit in a room is included in most housing and apartment ads.

Posts of assistance

According to Matressstuff.com, tatami mats are not as hard as wood, but they are tougher than ordinary mattresses. It’s simple to mistake it for a futon. When referring to a Japanese-style futon, some individuals affirm that they sleep on a tatami.


The first tatami mat was made in Nara during the Edo era (710 to 794). It occurs in the Kojiki record book, which was published in 712. It was placed on top of the hardwood flooring for aristocrats to sit on during the Heian era. It was utilized as a sleeping spot by samurai and aristocrats at the period. During the sixteenth century, people began to use it as a whole floor covering. Zashiki refers to rooms with a tatami mat as the whole covering. Sen no Rikyu created it, and it’s an important part of the team room. Sen no Rikyu’s tea room is tiny and can only accommodate mats. The tatami mat was first utilized in the houses of commoners, including the lower and higher strata, in the 17th century. In today’s world, tatami mats are woven by machines. According to estimates, 4,000 to 7,000 tatami mats are used, and the weaving process takes approximately an hour and a half. Many Japanese households now have western-style beds, yet tatami mats remain an important element of the country’s culture. They emit a distinct odor on wet days. The odor may be overpowering, especially when the system is very new. The fresh, smelly fragrance of the carpet fades as it matures. The fragrance is herbal or grassy in nature. The green tint of the straw fades to brown with time. You may add elegance to your bedroom by installing a tatami mat, particularly if you’ve always wanted to live in Japan but can’t due to budgetary restrictions. To create the mood within your house, just put some Japanese-themed decors such as bonsai trees and Japanese plants.

Tatami mats come in a variety of sizes.

Tatami carpets are often rectangular in form with a 2:1 ratio. The size of a mat is determined by the country in which it is produced. Its size is known as the Kyoto size in western Japan, and it is somewhat bigger than the size of a mat in eastern Japan.

  • The Mat’s Advantages
  • Beneficial to the back

It is very beneficial to the back. It is difficult for your body to establish proper alignment when sleeping on a western-style mattress. People prefer to sleep in the wrong postures because western style beds are more comfy. When sleeping in the incorrect postures, however, the rough surface of Japanese-style carpets does not offer comfort. In the end, a tatami mat may compel you to sleep in the proper postures, which is good for your back. The soft straw may help to relieve muscular and backbone strain, as well as stress in the lower limbs.

It aids in the regulation of humidity.

During the summer, a tatami mat can control the humid and hot temperature, while in the winter, it can regulate the cold and dry weather. Natural components of the carpet may absorb carbon dioxide and cleanse a space. The additional humidity in the air, as well as the humidity produced from the body when sleeping on the mat, may be absorbed by the dry straw.

Tatami rooms are a traditional Japanese room type that is typically used for sitting and sleeping. The modern tatami rooms have a more westernized design, but they still retain the traditional features of the original.