There are two reasons, (soil control experts will quibble with this, but I’m writing for people with muck problems, not experts)
The first reason is, soft soils such as muck, move sideways, or “laterally” if you like big words. When you step in any soft soil, mud, or muck the reason you sink is the soil moves sideways, taking the path of least resistance. Not much soil actually moves down.
As the muck moves to the sides it creates space for your foot to sink down, because you’re heavier than the muck.
So, the trick is to prevent the soil from moving sideways. That’s what the MuckMat® does. Square holes, or “apertures” if you really like big words, catch the soil as it moves and locks it place. Think of it as a giant snowshoe, it creates a thin veneer of soft soil that can’t move.
The second reason (yes, soil experts, I know this is part of the first reason) is weight distribution. Just like a snowshoe spreads your weight across a larger surface, so does the MuckMat®.
Think of it this way. When Sir Walter Raleigh laid his coat over a mud puddle so Queen Elisabeth wouldn’t soil her feet, both his coat and the queen’s foot sunk, (no rigidity or tension). However, if he’d put down a sheet of plywood, the queen would have pranced right over it and Raleigh wouldn’t have ruined his coat. A MuckMat® creates a “rigid” surface with its own “tension,” like a sheet of plywood, except it’s fllexible.
To recap: a MuckMat® keeps muck from moving, it distributes your weight and provides rigidity to the surface of the soil so you don’t sink in the muck. And that’s why it works.