Yoga Mats: Which One is Best for You
If you’re new to yoga or maybe just interested in getting more
into yoga exercises one essential piece of ‘equipment’ is the
yoga mat also known as the sticky mat. Sure you can use the
floor and bare feet but for the best yoga workout it’s wise to
invest in a quality yoga mat.
Yoga mats help the user to hold poses in proper alignment and
avoid the dangerous slipping that can occur without this
important tool. You’ll get a better workout and be better able
to execute poses in the proper positions.
Having the proper position for a pose (and holding it or moving
freely to the next pose) is key in getting the maximum benefit
out of any type of yoga exercise. And let's face it: laying on
the bare floor during meditation is only fun as much
Renting Yoga Mats
yoga studios will ‘rent’ you a sticky mat or yoga mat but I
suggest investing in your own. You can get a good
one for under twenty dollars. This way you can use it at home,
on the go, and in class. You don’t have to worry about who’s
used it before you or how often they are being washed. Which
leads me to an important point regarding yoga mats.
One of the best ways to get your yoga mat sticky, especially if
it’s new, is to wash it. Yes, wash it. Using soap and water put
it in the bathtub (that’s what I find easiest) and give it a
good washing. This simple process actually increases it’s
stickiness (although you’d thing the opposite) and this will
help you when executing yoga poses particularly if you’re doing
Hot Yoga or have sweaty feet and are prone to slipping. Be sure
to only use mild detergent and just a bit. Wash the soap off
thoroughly as this residue can make the mat slippery. They say
yoga mats are like fine wines; they only get better and more
valuable with time (and in the case of yoga mats
Let’s look at the most commonly used
The yoga rug is a bit different from the yoga mat as it’s made
of cotton and all natural fibers. This is the most traditional
type of yoga mat and is used widely in India
The Black Mat is a traditional yoga mat. This mat weighs
between seven and ten pounds and easily lays flat on the floor,
sand, or even grass.
The Sticky Mat is what you usually find in the Western yoga
classes. These mats vary in size but are generally 1/8 inch
thick. These will last a long time and are a worthwhile
The Ultra Mat is just that ultra thick. It measures about twice
the thickness of the regular sticky mat and provides extra
padding for the vulnerable ankles and knees.
The Travel Mat is best as a second mat for the avid yoga
practitioner who wants to do alignment poses when traveling.
This is usually small enough to fit easily into the front
zipper pocket of the average size suitcase.
Most of these yoga mats come with a bag or straps for easy
carrying and storage. As you can see there are a few choices
for yoga mats. Finding one that fits your needs and budget is
simple. Purchasing this accessory can make a big
difference in your yoga workout and you can of course use for
your pilates exercises as well.