If you finally decided to start doing yoga on a daily basis, it’s probably one of the best decisions you can make. But a lot more goes into it than you’d think. Getting the needed gear is a must in order to have a successful well-rounded yoga experience. But with the ever-growing boom of yoga, comes a wave of products, so how to choose? It can be a bit overwhelming, especially if you are new to all this. But you don’t have to worry, here are some tips and tricks on how to pick the right yoga mat for you!
Yoga mats are pretty standardized all over the world, so you can’t go wrong with the size of the actual thing. Just like yoga is beloved and recognized all over the world, so are the mats. Most yoga mats are around 6 feet long and 2 feet wide – now this is a standard height and width, but it’s not suitable for everyone. Taller people might need longer yoga mats, so consider this if you are of above-average height!
TEXTURE AND GRIP
When picking up a yoga mat for the first time, you have to keep in mind what kind of activities you’ll be doing on it. Are you only going to do meditation and light stretching, or will you do more complex poses and something fast-paced? This is important because some yoga mats are smooth, but slippery and not suited for hand standing or any pose where you need a good grip. Whilst others are well textured and are rough enough to have a good grip on! Just try to feel them and keep in mind what you’re going to do with it – it’ll help with making the purchasing choice.
Yoga mats came along the way, but the most popular materials are still PVC and rubber. They come in various forms, on one side are PVC yoga mats, they are plastic-based, pretty durable and sturdy, but the downfalls are that it’s not biodegradable and you do tend to slip once you start sweating. On the other hand, rubber yoga mats are a blend of plastic and rubber, more on the environmentally friendly side than PVC mats.
If you are terrified of plastic mats and contributing to pollution and waste in the world? Don’t shy away from getting a yoga mat because there are eco-friendly options for you! Many cork products are made from non-toxic materials and are healthy for both people who use them, and the plant. The good thing about these types of eco yoga mats is that they are lightweight but still durable and thick. Also, they have a good grip on the floor, so you won’t slide off from the mat easily!
THICKNESS AND WEIGHT
Another key thing that will play into the fact if you have a nice yoga experience or not is – the comfort of the mat itself. This is most notably determined by the thickness and bounciness of the yoga mat itself. Some are on the thinner side – for better balance and stability, especially for standing poses, but aren’t as good for poses that are more complex and need more texture to hold on to. Whilst on the other hand thicker and heavier yoga mats are more comfy, relaxing, and easier on your elbows, knees, and forearms – it’s like pushing onto a cushion and not the floor.
QUALITY VS. PRICE
You can do yoga everywhere, inside your home, out in the park – literally everywhere. The benefits that come with doing yoga are priceless, so why should you get the cheapest yoga mat? Now, this doesn’t mean you should drop a fortune, especially if you have a budget, but you shouldn’t get the cheapest, worst quality yoga mat out there. Just keep in mind that you’ll be doing a lot of activities on this mat, so you want to pick up a well-made, sturdy one, that will last you a long time. You’ll spend more money, in the long run, replacing cheap mats regularly. Instead, opt for a yoga mat that’s on the pricier side, you won’t regret it!
At the end of the day, any investment that goes directly to your health and benefits is not a waste of money! That’s why you should only get the best of the best, especially if you’ll be using that something on a daily basis – you want it to be durable and of the best quality. Your comfort is key in achieving the right state of mind, and yoga is there to help you along the way – a bonus if you have a comfy yoga mat!