A professional lawn mower is a type of mower that is much larger than consumer model lawn mowers. It is often much more powerful because it powers several blades instead of just one, and the deck is much wider than a consumer model to cut larger swaths of lawn at one time. A professional lawn mower usually features some sort of drive system, since the mowers themselves tend to be quite heavy and difficult to maneuver. They also feature braking systems to ensure safety when operating the machine. Some versions of the professional lawn mower allow the operator to sit on the mower itself and operate it from a seat mounted on top of the machine.
Some professional lawn mower models feature a clutch and several gears to drive the machine. This is done to vary the speed at which the mower drives forward. Smaller, narrower lawns will require the mower to move more slowly, while larger lawns will allow for higher speeds. A braking system is included as well to slow the machine down if necessary, especially when executing turns. The wheels of professional lawn mowers are often quite wide and feature a somewhat aggressive tread to help drive the mower up and down hills without slipping excessively.
The deck, or metal cover that protects the operator and bystanders from debris and danger from the spinning blades beneath, is much wider than consumer models and usually has several blades mounted beneath. Some professional lawn mower models may have up to five blades mounted beneath the deck for even and fast cutting. The deck also protects the engine from debris that can be sprung up by the spinning blades, and the engine itself is usually a two-stroke engine that is powerful enough to drive all the blades.
Some models exist that allow the operator to sit on top of the mower rather than walk behind it while mowing lawns. The seat is mounted above the engine and well above the deck, and the operator can control the speed and steering from controls mounted strategically around the seat. Some seats flip up to allow access to the engine compartment, and they are sometimes fitted with springs or other cushioning systems to enhance the comfort of the machine while riding over rougher terrain. Such mowers are commonly used by professionals who mow several lawns per day, or professional landscapers who need to mow large lawns quickly, such as at golf courses.