When it comes to yoga, having the proper gear is essential. Not only do you need a good pair of yoga pants and a comfortable top, but you also need a quality yoga mat. There are many different types of yoga mats on the market, and it can be tricky to decide which one is right for you. You’ll want to consider factors such as thickness, stickiness, and durability when making your decision. Here are a few tips to help you choose the perfect yoga mat for you!
1. Think about your practice before you select a mat.
If you are practicing the majority of classes at an Ashtanga studio, then it is best to have a thicker mat that will provide more cushion between yourself and the floor. On the other hand, if you are practicing Hatha or beginners’ yoga or Pilates, consider buying a mat with less cushion.
2. Decide if you want to buy an organic or non-organic mat.
Organic mats are made from natural rubber and non-organic mats are made from synthetic materials such as PVC, TPE, NBR, and EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer). There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to choosing an organic or non-organic mat. It really depends on your preference and what you are looking for in a yoga mat.
3. Check out the thickness of the mat you’re buying.
If you’re planning to use your mat outside, then you’ll need something thicker than an indoor mat, which can be anywhere from 3/16 to 1/4 of an inch. However, if you practice Ashtanga or heated classes, then you will want a thicker mat so that it doesn’t hurt your joints when doing poses like Downward Dog.
Think about how much cushioning you will need for your hips and knees.
Some yoga mats are more cushiony, which helps to protect your joints.
5. adhesive strength
Consider how grippy you want your mat to be. Some mats are very sticky and will not budge on the floor when you try to lift up your foot or hand. Other mats are less sticky but provide more traction.
Understand that some yoga mats have a natural “slick” to them and that they may not provide as much grip as a sticky mat. If you would like your mat to be less grippy, then buying a non-stick mat is the best option for you.
Look at how heavy and thick your mat feels. A heavier mat means it will soak up more water, so if you practice outside in the rain or other humid climates, consider purchasing a thicker mat.
Think about how easy it is to travel with your yoga mat. If you plan on commuting with your mat often, then find one that will be easy to fold up and carry around. However, if you are planning on carrying your mat from room to room in your home, then a lightweight mat is best.
Consider the durability of the mat you are buying. If you practice more on one side of your body than the other, or if you have very sweaty palms and feet, consider investing in a thicker and more durable mat. Thicker mats will hold up better over time.
10. Read reviews of your mat before you buy it.
There are many online shops that provide honest reviews of yoga mats, so be sure to read them before you buy. Look for mat brands that have a warranty or guarantee attached to them. This will give you added security if your mat wears out quickly or the thickness isn’t what you expected it to be.
yoga mat material type
Different brands of mats use different materials for their yoga mats. Here are a few types:
Carbonized rubber is the trademark material used in Manduka, Hugger Mugger Jade Yoga Mats, and Guru Mats. This material is created by combining natural rubber with carbon, which allows the mat to be extra sticky and durable.
TPE (Thermoplastic elastomer) is made by blending plastic and rubber. This material is more durable than natural rubber, but it may outgas into the atmosphere, which makes it unsuitable for those with allergies or asthma.
NBR (Nitrile Butadiene Rubber) is a petroleum-based synthetic rubber. This material is the most durable of all yoga mats.
EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) is also petroleum-based and it has great abrasion resistance. However, this mat may outgas depending on how long it has been sitting in storage.
Silicon is a non-chemical synthetic rubber that has high friction, which makes it grippier than other mat materials. However, it is not as durable as natural rubber.
There are also some eco-friendly yoga mats on the market made from organic cotton, bamboo, and cork. These mats come in a variety of types including sticky or non-sticky, thick or thin, and lightweight or heavy. It is best to read online reviews of these mat brands before you make a purchase to ensure the material will hold up over time.
Advantages of yoga mats
- 1oga mats provide cushioning and protection for your joints, especially your hips and knees.
- They come in a variety of thicknesses, so you can find one that’s perfect for your practice.
- Most yoga mats are made of non-toxic materials, so they are environmentally friendly.
- They are easy to travel with and fold up compactly.
- oga mats come in a variety of colors and designs, so you can find one that reflects your personality.
Disadvantages of yoga mats
Not all yoga mats are the same, but some yoga mats have the following issues that you should consider when purchasing.
- Slipping and falling
- Developing an allergy to the materials
- The mat not providing enough traction or stickiness
- The mat is too thin and does not offer enough cushioning
- -the mat not being durable
How to care for a yoga mat
yoga mats are made of natural materials, so they will naturally break down over time.
You need to clean your yoga mat regularly by wiping it with a mild soap and water solution or spraying it with an anti-bacterial spray designed for rubber mats. -some people like to use vinegar to wipe their mat down after each practice, and many yoga mats come with a small tread brush to help you clean your mat.
Using these solutions and sprays will keep your mat free of bacteria and smelling good between washes.
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