So you’re ready to invest in a yoga mat, or you’re ready to upgrade to a “real” yoga mat (see ya, slippery wal-mart mats!). Either way, you’ve come to the right place. There are tons and tons of yoga mats to choose from, and if you’re like me you usually go for the brightest/most colorful thing out there. Which is fine for mats, as long as you do some research first before splurging. But Becca, I don’t want to take the time to research! That’s fine because I did it for you! You can thank me later. Maybe owe me some Starbucks.
Finding the yoga mat that is a perfect match for you isn’t too simple, and it shouldn’t be! You want it to last, have just the right amount of squishyness, and to look nice when it’s not being used — just like finding a boyfriend who is the perfect match for you (or girlfriend, if you’re a dude)! It can be a tough hunt, but SO worth it in the end. Am I right? 😀 ❤ …Okay moving on.
First thing to think about when on the hunt for your perfect
boyfriend mat, is how squishy do you want it to be? What is your desired thickness? A standard yoga mat’s thickness is 3mm: thin enough to provide stability for balancing poses like tree pose, and thick enough to provide just enough cushion. Anything thicker than 3mm (like 4-6mm) would be good for those who want to double up their mat for Pilates or Barre, and want extra cushion for kneeling/seated/headstand poses.
Second thing you want to consider is the stickiness of your mat. You don’t want to be sliding around when transitioning from Chaturanga Dandasana (or plank pose) to one-legged downward dog (or Eka Pada Adho Mukha Svanasana for you yogis). You can choose between light tack (standard yoga mats) or high tack (better for those who get sweaty palms). Tack refers to the little bumps and ridges on your mat’s surface.
Third thing and most important for those of us who don’t have a ton of disposable income is how much are you going to spend on your mat? Look for mats that are made of Natural rubber, are eco-friendly, and are PVC free. If you’re on the shorter size like me, you won’t need a longer yoga mat (they can be more expensive anyways). It all depends on how squishy, thick, and natural you want your mat to be. Also be weary of high-end brand name mats (lululemon…cough) that are not necessarily better than other yogi brands out there. No one will be looking at your mat logo. And if they are,
question their existence as a yogi be nice and say Namaste ❤
Last thing to think about before buying your mat is the style, design, and/or color. Like I said earlier, I always end up going for the brightest, craziest pattern I can find because A) I like to be original and different, and B) das just how I do. But maybe you want a more calming/soothing color to your mat, or maybe you’re not even picky because hey it’s “just a mat” right? WRONG! Your mat will be with you all throughout your practice and should be something you love looking at (hello forearm stands, downward dog, dolphin pose, etc.). That being said, pick a pattern/color that defines you, that speaks to you, and shows off your personality.