Whether you are going to buy your first yoga mat or your third, choosing your new mat is always a fun journey. Where do you stand in your yoga practice? Which thickness suits your style and body? The colour, the material, there are so many things you can consider.
In the past, your yoga studio probably had yoga mats you could use. Nowadays, most studios require you to bring your own materials. Pretty good idea, actually. There are 3 good reasons to buy your own yoga mat.
So when you are actively practising yoga, having your own mat is really necessary. Now you have taken the step and want to order one online. Then you discover that there are quite a few different yoga mats. Quite a lot. Choosing a yoga mat can then quickly become quite 'a thing'. To avoid that, we have listed a few things for you:
Below you will find explanations on everything you need to know when buying a yoga mat. This is going to help you buy the perfect yoga mat that best suits you, your yoga style and your needs.
You will see on our site that most yoga mats are made of PVC, also known as sticky yoga mats. A pvc yoga mat is sturdy, has a good grip, so you won't slip in the most challenging yoga pose, and stays firmly on the floor. This type of yoga mat has a long lifespan and some mats are virtually indestructible. Moreover, a PVC yoga mat is suitable for all yoga styles.
PVC yoga mats do need to be "worked in. This means that your yoga mat gets more grip and becomes increasingly sticky with use. Want to speed up this process? Then read our blog Making yoga mat less slippery.
Go green! If you prefer an eco-friendly and sustainable yoga mat, then a TPE Eco yoga mat might be more your thing.
TPE is a 100% biodegradable plastic with eco-label certification. A TPE yoga mat has a remarkably good grip due to its open cell structure, even if your hands or feet are a bit damp from perspiration. This material is softer than PVC, offering more comfort in seated and lying poses.
It is a very pleasant yoga mat for yoga styles such as Yin Yoga, Hatha Yoga, Restorative and Kundalini.
(TIP) Many yogis buy a matching meditation cushion with their new mat. This way, all the colours in your practice space are coordinated, and that gives peace of mind.
The Eco yoga mat is also made for the environmentally conscious yogi. The eko yoga mat has a very good grip and you keep it even with damp (sweaty) hands and feet.
Eko Yoga mats made of rubber have a longer lifespan than TPE, but do wear out faster than PVC, simply because they are biodegradable. So sustainable for the environment is not always sustainable in use. Since rubber mats are a bit harder and firmer, these eko yoga mats are also great for active and intensive yoga forms like Ashtanga yoga.
The most common size of a yoga mat is 1.83 m long and 61 cm wide. Not to worry, even the taller Yogis among us don't have to put their feet 'off board' during Savasana, we also have extra long yoga mats of 2 metres and 2.16 metres.
Yoga mats come in thicknesses ranging from 1.5 mm (these are often travel yoga mats) to 6 mm. The most commonly used Yoga mats are 4 mm and 6 mm thick.
So which thickness should you choose? That is very personal.
Again: this is very personal, so consider what will work best for you and, above all, what is best for your body.
Because you are looking for YOUR yoga mat and want to stand on it very regularly, the eye wants something too. Yoga mats come in many colours, colour schemes and some yoga mats are printed with a beautiful design! When choosing a colour and/or print, think about what makes you happy and/or relaxed.
Somehow, very yoga, it shouldn't matter, but we - The Girls at Yogashop.nl - know that a REALLY nice mat contributes greatly to the motivation to practice a lot on it! :-)
One last thing to think about when buying a yoga mat: is the yoga mat easy to keep clean? Usually, a PVC mat is easier to maintain than an Eco yoga mat. But if you really want to know the ins and outs, read our blog on how to clean your yoga mat.
We at Yogashop think Yogashop, of course. ;-) You can see yoga mats almost everywhere these days. And sometimes even for a few euros at the very cheapest chain shops. But experience almost always confirms the cliche: cheap is expensive. A mat on which you slip, lose your balance or which starts to crumble after only your 2nd yoga class is no good at all.
Our years of experience in the industry and our even longer personal experience as avid yoga practitioners has ensured that we know very well what works (and what doesn't), and which gear is really nice to use.
We hope the above has helped you make a good choice. But if you're still in doubt, or if you want to delve further, you can read more in our blog 'How to choose the best yoga mat'. There we go into more detail about the properties of the different materials.
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