Vinyasa Flow Yoga – A series of yoga postures strung together in a flowing sequence.
What to Consider When Purchasing a Yoga Mat for Vinyasa Flow Yoga
- Mat thickness. Standard mat thickness is 1/8″ to 1/4″. If you have joint issues or injuries you may need the extra thickness of the 1/4″. In my opinion, mats over 1/2 inch in thickness are better as exercise mats than yoga mats. Remember, you will use your balance in yoga poses so even though a cushy mat might feel good on your forearms and knees it may also make balancing more difficult!
- Mat Stickiness. Stickiness refers to the grip or traction your hands and feet will have on the mat. This is super important! The grip will keep your hands and feet in place and prevent slipping while you’re in a pose!
- Mat Length. The ideal mat length is six inches longer than your height, but as long as you can lay on your back without your head or feet hanging off of your mat you’re ok. I’m 5′ tall so this has never been an issue for me. If you’re over 6 feet tall, consider a mat with extra length. The standard yoga mat is 68 inches long by 24 inches wide. Extra-long and extra-wide mats can be found online. Remember, with more length and width comes more weight when carrying around your mat!
- Mat Weight. To be honest, I always keep a yoga mat in my vehicle so I’m never carrying it too far to worry that much about the weight of my mat. Just note that weight can vary, with mat length, width, and thickness.
- Mat Design. Your mat design is completely up to you! You can find mats in almost every color of the rainbow. Some mats include a pattern to help you with alignment, some designs are simply for fun.
Mats I’ve Tried
My first investment priced yoga mat was from Jade Yoga. I still use them today and they seem to last forever. Another favorite mat brand is Manduka. I would suggest spending $10-$15 on your first mat. Find out what you like or dislike before you invest $100 or more. Every BODY is unique so you may have a different mat preference than me or the yogi next to you in class! Take some time to find what works for YOU. Once you decide what is important, you’ll definitely want to invest in a quality yoga mat.
Other Items to Help You Maintain Your Zen:
- Yoga Mat Cleaner. Whether you use your own mat or borrow one from the studio, it’s nice to clean it after a sweaty yoga session.
- Yoga Towel. Prepare yourself to work up a sweat; especially if you’re trying a hot yoga class.
- Water Bottle. As with any exercise, hydration is important. Drink your water!
- Yoga Mat Strap or Yoga Bag. There are so many cute ones out there and having one makes it a whole lot easier to manage your gear:)
- Yoga Blocks. A yoga block is great to help you get into the pose and bring the ground to you, especially if you’re just beginning.
- Blanket. There are yoga blankets usually geared toward restorative yoga classes. You can use blanket for support and cushion in beginner workshops as well.
Here’s to seeing you on your mat!