When it comes to yoga and meditation, for that matter, one key piece of equipment you need is a mat to practise on. Especially with the pandemic, now more than ever, your own personal gear is key to a safe and efficient experience. However, with so many brands and mats in the market, it can often be challenging to decide which is right for you. So here are seven key questions to think about before you buy.
Where will you be practising?
You can perform yoga and meditate in so many different places and environments. If you’re moving about a lot, you’ll be wanting to hunt down a mat that is easy to transport. A thicker mat is essential for those who will be practising outside in nature to ensure adequate padding and comfort.
What type of yoga will you be practising?
There are several different forms of yoga, each with varying requirements for your mat. Hatha and Yin yoga are more standard forms where a traditional mat will work just fine. However, when practising the likes of Ashtanga, Hot of Vinyasa yoga, you might find that sweating means you need a mat that is not only absorbent but features strong traction too.
How tall are you?
The average yoga mat stretches out to about 68 inches long. For many, this will be adequate for lying out on in Savasana. However, if you are tall, you will need to invest in a brand that offers longer mats. You can also find mats that are wider too.
How thick should your mat be?
If you have a slender frame, you may find that a thin mat doesn’t offer you enough padding. This is also the case for those sporting injuries, as yoga can put a lot of pressure on areas like your elbows and knees. A thicker mat might make your practice more comfortable, but it can make it harder. An example is the extra padding throwing off your balance.
What’s your budget?
Of course, one of the most important questions is how much you want to spend on your mat. Of course, you don’t need to splash your cash, especially when you’re just starting out. However, try and buy the best quality you can afford to ensure it lasts. After all, you want to be eco-friendly.
What’s your style?
Finally, with thousands of different designs, it’s time to choose your style. Do you want plain or printed? Colourful or a single dazzling shade. Whatever you opt for, make sure it inspires you to keep up your practice.