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There are so many variables to consider before purchasing a great yoga mat. You have to consider what material it is made of, mat thickness, price and more. It’s also very important to know if it will stand the test of many yoga sessions.
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The most useful feature when purchasing a yoga mat is to know its durability and longevity. So let’s start with this caveat: the mat needs to be cared for on a consistent basis. The longer you let dirt and bacteria build up on your mat, the shorter the lifespan. Along with cleaning, you need to avoid storing your mat in a hot car or leaving it outdoors.
Secondly, the old adage “you get what you pay for” applies perfectly to yoga mats. Prices can range from $20 – over $100. Though the lesser price mat seems attractive, you may be replacing the worn down mat frequently, easily multiplying your initial investment. A high quality mat may cost more initially, but if you only buy one, you are actually saving money. It needs to be made of durable material to survive tough yoga practices. A lifetime guarantee tells you it will last.
If you are wondering if you really need a yoga mat at all, experts agree that for safety reasons, everyone should use one. Comfort and support are two different things, but they are tied together due to one common factor: thickness. If the mat is too thin, your joints and other body parts will let you know. If it’s too thick you won’t have the balance and support needed for certain poses and feel as if you are “sinking” into the mat.
The standard mat is 1/8” thick. If you have bad knees, you may wish to use a ¼” model. The extra cushioning will be more comfortable. If you want the most “cushy” mat available, go for a ½” thickness. You will find these perfect for therapeutic and restorative practices. New practitioners do well with a thicker mat to help prevent injury while they are building muscle and joint strength.
For the best stability choose a firm, dense mat. You should feel steady in all your poses. Texture is important for traction between the floor, the mat and your body. You can choose between a soft, smooth feel to outright roughness. Raised patterns may be captivating at first, but the best thing to do is try it out before you purchase a yoga mat. What may initially feel “right” may not be the best choice in the long run.
Different materials offer a variety of textures for your personal preference. For added grip, choose a mat with a non-smooth texture. Remember that they need to be cleaned more often since dirt and sweat are attracted to the grooves. It’s best to choose one that feels most natural to you.
You don’t want your mat to slide all over the place while you are changing poses. To avoid injury, choose one that has the right amount of stickiness to be beneficial to your workout.
The stickiest mats are clean ones. Mats constructed of PVC are also known for being extra sticky and rubber is naturally slip-resistant. Staying connected to the ground is necessary and can be aided by a patterned bottom which can be seen on many eco-friendly mats. Make sure your mat gives you the traction you need to avoid sliding and slipping.
Portability is just a fancy way of saying that you will be transporting your mat. Whether it’s just from your home to a class, or you are taking it on vacation with you, it’s necessary to know how easily this can be accomplished. Does it come with a carrying case or strap? Are these included or do you have to purchase them separately? You will also need to know its weight and size.
Mat size is important to cover the length and width of your body. Standard widths are 24” and are sufficient for most individuals. Most mat lengths are 68” – 72” long. Have a friend help to measure your length fully stretched out before you purchase one.
It’s natural to assume that those who practice yoga care about the environment. It’s good to know about some of the properties of the various materials used to make mats so you can choose the right one for you.
Jute is a fibrous material from the jute plant and is quite absorbent. Unfortunately, like bamboo, cork and hemp will wear down and need to be replaced regularly. Cotton absorbs a lot of sweat but isn’t slip-resistant. Rubber, either natural or recycled, has great grip capacity but is not a good idea for those who have latex allergies. It can also have an odor that lasts for weeks.
Lastly, there is the “non-eco-friendly” material, PVC. Many mats are made of this and though durable, their ingredients are linked to health issues and have a negative impact on the environment.
The two cell structures offer you opposite benefits so you will need to know which is best for your own yoga practice. Closed-cell mats are easier to clean since they don’t absorb moisture and sweat. These tend to be more slippery.
Open-cell mats are harder to clean because they absorb sweat and oils (including cleaning fluids). It is easier to keep your grip on these. Unfortunately, they also attract hair and pet dander, which can be difficult to remove easily from your mat. The best thing to do is to look at them in a store, to give you the views you need to ascertain the contrasts.
There are different mats for different needs and it is not that hard to figure out some basics. If you are a yoga instructor and travel to different locations for classes, you may wish to have a lightweight mat for carrying purposes. Weight ranges start at about 2 pounds to more than 10 pounds. The thickness and density impact the weight factor.
The density needs to be comfortable enough for kneeling poses but yet dense enough for balance poses. Thicknesses can range from 1/16”, for travel mats to the super cushy ½”. Density, thickness and weight are all about your personal comfort. No one else can select the correct mat for you.
If you have done any preview shopping for yoga mats you have surely noticed the great range of prices. Most economical mats are a modest $20. The drawback is they have to be replaced frequently, sometimes as often as every three months for daily yoga practitioners. Suddenly, the mat now costs $80, for you need to purchase a new one four times a year.
The more expensive models can cost you from $80 – $100, but may have a lifetime guarantee. When you considering all the things you are looking for in your yoga mat, remember that your budget is important too.
It is important to know which style of yoga you will most likely practice to get the preferred mat. There are at least seven different styles of yoga. “Hot yoga” or “bikram” is done in an area where temperatures are at least 105 degrees. Your mat will need to withstand some heavy duty sweating for that particular type. Other types of yoga may use additional props that may or may not end up on your mat.
Whether you are a novice or a long-time practitioner, you will need to ascertain your style and environment. Only then can you make an informed decision on the right mat for your practice.
How easy your yoga mat is to clean may not seem important but it really is! It’s more than just shaking the dust and clothing fibers off of it. A good, thorough cleaning keeps bacteria at bay and your mat as sticky as possible (remember, that’s a good thing). Not all mats can be cleaned the same way.
Some mats can be easily cleaned with a damp sponge and some soap. Some recommend using a special mat cleaner and then hang to dry in the sun. Others are machine washable on a gentle cycle in cold water. You can squeeze extra water out with a towel before hang drying.
There are several things you must NEVER do and it is important to know them all. Mats cannot be vacuumed, cleaned with a garden hose or put in a dryer. Several will also tell you not to wash them in a bathtub or shower either. Read the instructions before you purchase one so you are knowledgeable of its proper cleaning, which will add to its longevity.
Here is our list of the Top Ten yoga mats. They are made by these well-known companies: Manduka, Aurorae, Jade Yoga, GoYoga, Youphoria, ProSource, YogaAccessories, Yoga Design Lab and Spoga. They offer a variety of features that can have you doing yoga in your living room or on an island vacation spot around the globe.
The total Reviews Bee rating sums up the overall picture of every product. Reviews Bee works tirelessly to ensure that we are providing the best product recommendations to you and your family. In rating the various yoga mats available, we strive to give you the best information possible.Our algorithm includes information from both expert and consumer resources. There is no need to spend hours on researches, because Reviews Bee instantly gives all researches and analysis for you and creates a Top list to save your time and money.
Reviews Bee collects consumer review information from popular retail websites including Amazon, eBay, BBB, Yelp, Consumerrepports, etc. In addition, Reviews Bee utilizes reputable market niche websites, to include in the product ranking decision. Using the feedback of actual customers in coordination with expert evaluations enables us to provide each product with a score that takes into account all trustworthy information available on that item.
We came up with the popularity score for every yoga mat provider while analyzing 23 expert sites that are trustworthy. Based on our detailed evaluation, each yoga mat is assigned an expert popularity score based upon how many times each product is positively mentioned by experts in the industry.
By analyzing all the expert review sites our algorithm summed up the average ranking for every yoga mat in their rankings and that is how we came up with the final score for each yoga mat brand.
We managed to gather more than 4362 reviews from 29 reliable sources and our algorithm calculated the average score for each brand.
In order to understand how satisfied those consumers were, we analyzed the total number of reviews. We collected all the reviews and the number of stars people gave for each product. Based on these findings we came up with the average customer rating. This is how we managed to bring out the yoga mat reviews through which you know how the consumer can rate the yoga mat.
In order to make our results authentic, we don’t limit ourselves to just the positive rankings factors but we also take complaints from all over the web into consideration and figure out how many customers were complaining about the product.
Through this, we show both sides of the product whether it’s positive or negative in nature. This then makes it a negative factor in our algorithm. This as a result makes the best yoga mats reviews. That is why yoga mats reviews not only have positive comments mentioned but also the negatives as well.