Yoga mats are an essential part of the yoga routine, and doing yoga on carpets, wet towels or overly soft exercise mats can lead to injuries. Most yoga studios and gyms offer yoga mats, but it may be more hygienic to have your own. While there are many options, the vast majority of yoga mats are suitable for any yoga style. Often, your choice will come down to personal preference. That said, knowing the differences will help you choose the yoga that suits your individual needs. How to choose a yoga mat?
The standard yoga mat is about an eighth of an inch thick, and the thickest is about a quarter of an inch. There are also ultra-thin yoga mats, often referred to as "travel yoga mats," which are only 1/16 of an inch thick. They fold easily and don't weigh much, so they can easily fit into a suitcase.
If you're not sure where to start, choose a mat of about 1/8 inch thickness, which is very standard. These pads are perfect for those who practice strong, fluid exercises. They allow firm contact with the floor, which helps maintain stability in a variety of positions. They're also less likely to get in your way as you transition from one position to another than thicker mats.
The thickness of a yoga mat has a lot to do with comfort and stability, and thinner mats can help increase stability in yoga styles with more active postures or balanced, focused postures. Look for a mat with a textured surface to maintain a better grip when the pose becomes more demanding.
Thicker mats provide additional cushioning and are best suited for more treatment practices. For example, if you prefer restorative yoga (a form of yoga that involves fewer postures and holds them for longer periods of time), you might prefer a softer, more padded mat. Thicker mats are also better for forearm and kneeling positions, as well as for soft knees or sore joints. But in standing positions, they may be more difficult to balance.
Yoga mats come in a variety of materials, including PVC, TPE, natural rubber, organic cotton and jute. Eco mats have slightly less grip on the floor than other options, but their natural texture provides traction for your body. PVC has a durability of up to ten years, but if sustainability is your top priority, they will be the first choice.
When choosing materials for your yoga mat, you can choose anything from inexpensive PVC to environmentally friendly natural rubber. The material you choose affects the price, weight, grip and durability of your yoga mats. In general, thicker mats last longer than thinner mats. In other words, the durability of the mat is also related to the material the mat is made of.
PVC is a plastic-based material that is very durable, easy to clean, and provides excellent floor grip. However, PVC mats do not absorb water and can become slippery when you sweat a lot. PVC does not contain latex, which is a benefit for those who are allergic to it, however, it is not as biodegradable and environmentally friendly as other options.
TPE is an artificial mixture, usually made from a plastic and rubber polymer. TPE yoga mats may be more environmentally friendly than PVC, and some are completely recyclable. TPE yoga mats are usually not as durable as PVC yoga mats of the same thickness but still provide good traction.
The texture of a yoga mat determines the traction it provides. Like viscosity, texture affects how well you slide and how much you slide. It provides a physical barrier to sliding (viscosity depends on suction). Since texture affects the feel of a yoga mat, it is also an integral part of the overall comfort level.
Texture can be artificial (a raised pattern, for example) or determined by the material, jute mats have an organic roughness. Although the PVC yoga mat is slightly textured, it feels softer.
If you are looking for non-slip yoga mats, you can look for rubber, jute, or cotton mats that have a raised, tactile feel instead of PVC mats. No matter how strenuous your exercise, it will help you stay still.
If smoothness is of Paramount importance to you, then the PVC yoga mat is your best choice. If you like stickiness but are curious about newer, more eco-friendly options, try them out before you buy, some eco-friendly yoga mats offer traction that you might not expect, even if they don't have the traditional sticky feel.
Sticky yoga mats prevent you from sliding during yoga exercises and help you maintain alignment as you move from one pose to another and hold it for a few seconds.
If you need help with posture, but don't like a raised mat, a PVC yoga mat may be your best choice. Remember, these mats only become sticky after cleaning, so make sure you care for them properly.
If you have bought a PVC yoga mat, please clean it before use. You can get a clean effect by using a yoga cleaning agent.
If you are an environmental protector who pays great attention to environmental protection, you can choose an eco friendly yoga mat.
Eco friendly yoga mat are usually made of TPE, natural rubber, recycled rubber, and natural materials such as jute or organic cotton. Other materials such as PVC yoga mats are not biodegradable, which is not environmentally friendly.
If environmental protection is important to you, avoid yoga mats made from PVC (traditional sticky mats), which don't decompose in landfills and are difficult and expensive to recycle. Rubber, jute, and cotton yoga mats, while available in a variety of thicknesses, tend to be thicker and smoother than PVC mats. You get eco friendly yoga mat that is thick enough to meet your needs for comfort and portability and have textures that prevent sliding (such as raised geometric patterns).
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