Why to invest in a solid Yoga Mat! – By Vanessa Ragains

Hello There, this week we are shifting gears a bit to take some time to chat about Yoga mats, and their differences. 


So, I just had a thought about the prices on Yoga mats and why it is worth it to invest a little more money in a Yoga Mat.

In the beginning of my Yoga journey (Before I was a Yoga Instructor), I drove to Target and purchased my first $20 mat. It was green with a tree print, and I LOVED it! It is a smart choice if you are just starting out and finding your Yoga rhythm.

As my practice grew, I found that in Downward Dog, lunges, and other similar poses that have the possibility of injuring yourself if you slip. Being a Massage Therapist, I could NOT take that risk with becoming injured. So, I did my research! After my teacher training course, I was more confident with my Jade Yoga mat. The rubber it was made from provided a solid grip that allowed me to hold the pose while getting deeper in each pose.

These are the brands that I use personally and find that they support my practice in ANY Asana.

1) Jade Yoga Mats – This mat is used for my personal practice or when I teach classes. They use the rubber from a rubber tree to make this mat extra grippy which supports you deepening your practice as you move through the asanas.

2) Gaiam Yoga Mats – These mats come in a variety of colors, and are perfect for beginners. Gaiam has several options of mat thickness and width for every body. The name is also well-known.

3) Manduka Yoga Mats – This mat is used for when I attend a Bikram class. I choose the travel mat for this type of Yoga so that I am more balanced as this mat is very thin. It is also lighter which helps if you are hiking or camping.

These brands are of a higher quality as they last longer than your typical $20 mat. Now that I am a Yoga Instructor, I appreciate quality in a mat which allows me to be more confident in poses during my private practice, teaching classes, especially when I attend Bikram classes. I choose to invest in these mats to enhance my practice.

Finally, choosing your mat is based on a few features:

1) Thickness: Some folks need extra support for Cat/cow series on their knees. In this case, you would want a thicker Yoga mat. Check out the compare/contrast chart below. 

Yoga mat thickness
Compare/Contrast thickness and price!

2) Price: Depending on your budget, you can find mats from $15-$100+. Investing in a good mat will support a consistent yoga practice that you will benefit from. I have chosen to work with the 3 types of yoga mats listed above for their different features.

3) Color: Last but not least, color can be a deciding factor as well. I choose a different color for each of my 3 mats. Some have pattern, others are plain. Purchasing accessories for you mat also falls under this category. For example, I have a Yoga strap that I use to hold my yoga mat AND as a tool for my classes.

Besides the reasons I have listed, What are some reasons you chose one yoga mat over another?

Thank-you for taking the time to read my Blog, and have a grOOvy week!

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3 thoughts on “Why to invest in a solid Yoga Mat! – By Vanessa Ragains

  1. Great recommendations! I didn’t appreciate the “grip” or cushion until feeling soreness on my knees or in my wrists (and having to constantly re-adjust due to slipping). Do you think the lightweight yoga socks with the grips help? FYI – sites like “Active Gear” and “Left Lane Sports” often have Manduka yoga gear on sale! 🙂


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