There are hundreds of brands and models of Yoga mats … With this vast selection, How to find the carpet that will suit you? How do you use it? How to use it ? And how to maintain it?
Follow the guide to become inconsolable on Yoga mats!
Understanding Yoga Mats
RECOGNIZE A YOGA MATS
There are several styles of carpets.
Let’s start with a little fun game of guessing: you’ll see 4 photos of carpets, it’s up to you to identify which (or which) are Yoga mats. Maximum concentration and magnifying glass of Sherlock Holmes in hand … launch!
Let us gradually lift the mystery on this riddle:
- The 1st carpet is a carpet … camping ! It is recognizable by its material that recalls a kind of aluminum and its color a bit disco … I have never seen a Yoga mats of this style, but who knows, it may come someday ?!
- The second could be a nice carpet to practice the postures with names of birds: the raven, the eagle … because it is nothing but a flying carpet ! If, however, you thought it was a Yoga mat, you can always justify your answer by saying, “Yes, this is the Yoga mat of Aladdin! “🙂
- So there, no doubts, it is indeed a carpet of Yoga ! It is quite long, rather thin and in a rather rubbery material quite characteristic.
- This one is a cousin of the carpet of Yoga … It is a carpet of Pilates ! You may have fallen into the trap because they look alike. But the Pilates carpet is always much thicker than that of Yoga mats
The Yoga mats, the one that interests us, is unique in its kind!
Some additional clues to check that you have put your hand on a Yoga mats, and nothing else:
- It is rectangular
- It measures about 180 cm long by 70 cm wide
- Yoga mats are fairly thin, about 5 mm thick
- It can be full of different colors
- It sometimes has a small relief on one side, like small alveoli
The Yoga mats are practical because it allows to recognize the people who practice Yoga ! Indeed, if you see a person wearing a carpet in one arm or on his back, then you already know one of his passions!
YOGA MATS: MORE THAN A SUPPORT, A TRUE SYMBOL
The yoga mat is the yogin (= the person who practices yoga) what the tennis racket is, or the kimono to the judoka. Indeed, when practicing Yoga, our carpet accompanies us wherever we go .
YOGA MATS = COMFORT
But exactly why do we practice on a carpet and not on the floor?
From a practical point of view, it is mainly for reasons of comfort .
For example, if you practice on parquet floor, barefoot and without carpet, you risk catching splinters! It would not be very nice. In another style, there is also the carpet that scratches the feet or even the cold tiles!
Once you start practicing on your warm and soft carpet, you will not be able to do without it.
However, it can be noted that some people prefer to practice without carpets because they feel closer to the Earth and their roots! Each his own !
YOGA MATS = SYMBOL
More symbolically, the Yoga Mats represents your personal space of practice . It is a happy space and exploration of your self even if you practice in a group course. Your Yoga mats represents your appointment with your well-being .
During the course time, you are alone on the mat, exploring your body, your breathing, your mind. Your carpet is your companion, in a way the companion and witness of your practice
How to Use a Yoga Mats?
BORROW OR BUY A CARPET?
Should I use the Yoga mats that my studio or my teacher lends me or bring my own carpet?
If you are a beginner and practice Yoga on average once a week, I advise you to use the carpets loaned by your room or your Teacher.
On the other hand, if you start practicing several times a week, including at home, then I recommend you acquire your own carpet.
Having your own carpet increases comfort and involves you more in your practice . Moreover, this creates a habit, since you will always have appointments with the same carpet. It is as if he were witnessing your progress and discoveries … It’s quite pleasant!
WHERE TO INSTALL AND HOW TO HANDLE YOUR CARPET?
The situation ? When you arrive in yoga class and head to the stack of Yoga mats stored in the room. You bravely take a carpet, and there you say to yourself: How and where do I settle?
You look around as discreetly as possible but you still have a doubt.
The arrangement of the carpets can sometimes vary from one course to another, but in general there is one or more rows of carpets for the students (shown in blue) and the Prof mat (represented in orange) is Perpendicular to that of the pupils and is placed in front.
Here are the two most common examples of layout of the room so that you are not lost on D-Day:
Layout 1 is the most frequent: the teacher settles in front of the pupils.
Layout 2 is more original: the carpet of the teacher is in the middle and the students face each other, in mirror. Sometimes you will also find courses where students sit in a circle or even a star! Everything is possible. But do not worry, the teacher will always explain where to settle.
Try to leave a lateral distance with the adjacent carpet (s) . If the course is full and suddenly we are very tight laterally, we will often shift a bit with its neighbor or neighbor to not hinder the movements of extension of the arms on the sides.
Do not worry, put your carpet where you feel good , and if ever there is need, the teacher will kindly ask you to shift.
To unroll your carpet, you just have to place one of its corners on the ground, in front of you, straight, and then use your two hands to unwind lengthwise. Make sure your carpet is spread out. It must not form bumps with the ground nor have its corners that fold inwards.
HOW TO TRANSPORT YOUR CARPET?
The best is to have a waterproof bag that will protect your carpet, especially in case of rain.
If you only practice in the studio, you can sometimes leave your carpet on the spot. Ask at the front desk.
My advice : when you have your carpet with you, be careful not to forget it while on the move! For example, if you go to work with your carpet, then take it to your class and then come back home, you have at least 3 risks of forgetting it somewhere.
Again, if you forget it at work or at the studio, you should be able to recover it without any problem! On the other hand, if you forget it in public transport, for example, it might be more complicated.
The worst is often when you have several bags, for example: a purse, a bag with your meal or shopping and carpet. It’s three different things, and you risk losing one on the road. If you are sometimes a little distracted, you can tie your bag and your carpet together and like that you recover all of a sudden at the end and you minimize the chances of misplacing your precious carpet.
PRACTICING AWAY FROM HOME WITHOUT CARPET, IS IT POSSIBLE?
Cases: you go away without a carpet … and you want to practice anyway … Is there a way?
For example, you go on weekends with friends, or you sleep at the hotel. How to enjoy your yoga session without carpet? Here’s a good parade: Yoga socks anti-slip. You can find some very nice ones, AMAZON OR SNAPDEAL ADDS
If you want to practice in the open air, at the seaside, in the mountains or in the park, your solution will be to use a towel or a large pareo. Or you will practice without yoga mats, if you prefer to be in closer contact with nature!
Buy your 1st carpet … and the following!
HOW TO CHOOSE YOUR Yoga Mats: THE 6 ESSENTIAL CRITERIA
The preferences of each are different regarding the choice of Yoga mats.
However, 6 major criteria stand out and are the aspects on which you must concentrate before selecting the carpet or yoga mats that will become yours.
Find out below.
A good carpet should be thick and fluffy
Its purpose is to protect you and isolate you from the hardness and cold of the soil .
In many postures, you will have to be supported on the knees, hands, even the head and so you must be able to practice in a comfortable way.
On the other hand, if your carpet is too thick, you risk losing balance in certain postures like the tree that require a good anchorage in the ground.
The choice of the thickness of the carpet belongs to you, know however that some practitioners of Yoga find that if the carpet is too thick, they lose their connection with the ground. Up to you !
A good carpet must be non-slip and therefore adhere well to the ground
Sometimes it happens that the carpet or Yoga mats slips during certain movements or hangs when you make jumps forwards or backwards. It has happened to me to take my feet in my carpet jumping forward after a vinyasa and it frankly hurts! So pay attention to this!
A good carpet should be light enough to be transported easily.
There are, for example, good carpet models … but weighing a ton! At the limit if you use it to practice at home, it’s fine, but if you carry it regularly, you’ll soon get fed up.
And if you carry your carpet every time to go to your Yoga studio or to your teacher, you may soon get a little fed up.
On the other hand, if you find a seat and you have your carpet hanging in the back by the strap, you may, like me, have the pleasant surprise to feel the softness of the carpet in your back like a small pillow. I spent very pleasant trips like this!
In summary :
Depending on how you use your Yoga Mats, you will choose:
Yoga mats for the home : a relatively heavy and comfortable carpet
For the outdoors (practicing in a studio or a teacher’s home, or in the park or on a trip): a lighter carpet will suit you better
For a mixed use : try to find a compromise: a carpet not too heavy but still comfortable. If you are ever ready to invest a little more: buy two carpets: one for the house, the other for the outside and for Your travels.
4. THE SIZE
A good carpet must be long and wide enough to be able to practice at your ease
Note: If you are traveling, you can buy a carpet of smaller dimensions, more convenient to carry! There are even now foldable carpets!
5. THE MATERIAL
There are carpets made of biological materials (recycled rubber, organic cotton …) that respect nature, and others made with plastic derivatives. Most standard carpets are made of PVC, also known as vinyl.
Sometimes “bios” carpets tend to slip a little more than plastic ones. But you will find some “green” carpets with a good non-slip rubber coating. Again, the decision is yours!
6. THE PRICE
The ideal is to find a carpet with good value for money. You do not want to ruin your carpet, but you do not want to change it every 6 months because it gets too bad.
So, I hope this article has helped you become an expert in Yoga Mat. To go a little further, I would like to share with you the idea of transposing your Yoga … outside your yoga mats. That is to say to try to regain that state of peace and serenity that you have on the carpet in your daily life!
On the Yoga mats, we learn to be completely present in the present moment, we reconnect with our bodies and with our minds. We learn to observe the different sensations, without judgment or comparisons. And when we leave our Yoga mats to get back to our daily life, we can try to maintain that well-being and these qualities throughout our day.
You can easily buy Yoga mat in amazon or snapdeal or bigbazaar. Only be careful about the quality. First compare then select any one of your choice.
I wish you a very beautiful practice of Yoga and meditation!
See you soon!
If you liked this article, do not hesitate to leave a comment. Tell us about your relationship with your carpet, let us know what your favorite carpets are! Do not be afraid to express yourself!