Yoga can be practiced almost anywhere, without special equipment, and by people of all ages. You basically do not need anything to practice Yoga. The most basic equipment for yoga is the yoga mat. Using a mat will provide support and added comfort when you do lying or sitting positions.¬† Since Yoga mat is a personal accessory, it is important that when we buy one, it must meet our requirements.
Length: Choose an ideal size suitable for you. Length of the yoga mats range between 62 to 75 inches.
Thickness: Thickness should not be less than 4 mm. Cushioning is important for injury prevention.
Durability: Check for durability of yoga mats, keeping in mind their eco-friendliness
Portable: Yoga mats should preferably be light weight and portable, so that they can be carried even while you are traveling.
Here are some tips on how to choose yours:
Plastic Yoga Mats:
Plastic yoga mats are cheap and are available in a whole lot of colors. These are worst kind of mats to buy. Though they are cheap, they do not last long. Another drawback is the obnoxious smell of chemicals which might just turn you away from Yoga. They are thin and hence might pose problem while practicing certain yoga postures. If you are concerned of environment, steer clear of these plastic mats.
Jute Yoga Mats
Jute mats are made of natural fibre and are thus environment friendly. However, due to their porous nature, they absorb your sweat and with time will start smelling. These mats do not last long and might show signs of detoriation very soon.
Rubber Yoga Mats:
Rubber mats are the best kind of mats to opt for. They do not pinch your pocket and are environent friendly too. However, people who are allergic to latex should not use rubber mats, unless you want your allergy to flare up. Latex-free mats are available in the market at a higher price. Rubber mats are way better than plastic mats laden with chemicals. They also provide apt cushioning for your yoga practice.
Pilates marts can double up as your yoga mat. However, pilates mats are much thicker than a typical yoga mat.¬† However it helps prevent injuries to knees, hips, elbows etc. If you practice both pilates and yoga, go for a pilates mat. Just take care that the pilates mats has a non-slip surface.
Hence if you are new to Yoga or an experienced practioner, it is important to keep in mind the requirements and needs of the yoga practitioner. Hope these above tips on how to choose a yoga mat can help you make a decision.