|1. BalanceFrom||2. Sivan||3. Aurorae|
Yoga is a group of physical, mental and spiritual disciplines. It originated in ancient India and came from a Sanskrit word which means ‘to join’ or ‘union’’. To stay fit and healthy, it is essential to at least exercise for half an hour each day. Yoga is one of the easiest and most basic forms of exercise. It improves not only our physical health but also our mental health.
The most important gear for practicing yoga is a yoga mat. If you decide to take up yoga, you must be really confused as to which yoga mat is best for you. You may be wondering how exactly to choose the best yoga mat for yourself, especially since there are so many to choose from.
It would be a little bit easier to choose a yoga mat for yourself if you intend to practice it at home. However, if you have decided to join a yoga class, you would want to be more cautious. Some yoga studios provide you with gear such as yoga mats. But let’s be honest: you don’t want other people’s sweat on you.
Not to mention, a yoga mat is a perfect incubator for many of our skin infections. People sweat on them, and they are rarely cleaned, considering they have are used every day. Therefore, it is always recommended to purchase a personal yoga mat.
Considering you are a beginner, it might not be possible for you to know all the features you need in your yoga mat. This article is to help you out with the features of yoga mats for beginners. At the end we have also included our edit if the best yoga mats for beginners.
Nine Things To Consider When Choosing The Best Yoga Mat For Beginners
Here are the eight essential tips that will help beginner yogis in choosing the right yoga mat for them.
1. Consider The Thickness:
A standard yoga mat is usually ⅛ inches thick. This thickness works for most people. However, if you are a beginner, then you may need a thicker mat. Since you may not be accustomed to yoga asanas, you may hurt your back, hips or your joints.
Hence, a ⅙ or ¼ inches yoga mat would be right for you.
However, one thing that you need to keep in mind that an ultra thick mat might affect your balance during standing postures. Plus, the added cushion usually makes the mat bulkier. This makes it harder to carry around. If you don’t have any trouble with your joints and you feel comfortable sitting on a standard yoga mat, there is no need to buy a thicker yoga mat.
2. Consider The Texture:
If you want a smooth mat, it has to be a good one. A smooth mat with a ‘sticky’ feel is a great option for beginners. This is because being a beginner, you might not be able to perform all asanas correctly and tend to slip. A smooth yoga mat with a sticky feel provides traction, and this will prevent you from sliding or slipping around during your practice.
Smooth mats with great traction are really good for Ashtanga and Vinyasa yoga. These yoga types require powerful movement. The right mat prevents the user from slipping while performing yoga.
People nowadays prefer natural rubber mats instead of smooth PVC yoga mats. However, natural rubber mats won’t be right for you if you sweat a lot, because rubber mats won’t absorb sweat like a textured mat.
Mats that have textured surfaces naturally provide grip. Therefore they are less slippery. Some rubber mats also come with a nice texture, and these are perfect for more gentle types of yoga.
3. Where Will You Practice?
The place where you practice yoga matters a lot. If you practice yoga at home, you do not need to worry about transporting a heavy mat. Therefore, if you are a beginner and practice Hatha or Yin yoga, you should definitely go for a thicker mat. It would be more comfortable for you.
However, if you go out for yoga classes or to a park, you would require a lightweight mat. Either go for a thick mat made using NBR foam or if you’re comfortable with a standard mat, go for a lighter one. Since it is lightweight, it would be easy to roll up carry around.
4. Make Sure Your Mat Is Long Enough:
Your yoga mat should be long enough for your entire body to fit in, especially when you lie down in Savasana. The standard yoga mats are normally 6 feet long. They usually work for most people.
However, if you are taller, then you might need an extra long yoga mat. Extra wide yoga mats are also available. So keep this in mind if you need more space.
5. What Type Of Yoga Are You Practicing?
A standard quality will do for you if you practice Hatha or Yin yoga. Since you don’t get sweaty practicing these styles of yoga, your yoga mats do not have to be of high quality. Even with an average amount of traction, it will suffice.
However, if you practice styles such as Ashtanga, Vinyasa or Hot yoga, then you might need to invest a handsome amount of money on your yoga mat. You would need a yoga mat with great sweat-absorbing technology. It should also provide super-strong traction.
6. Pay Attention To The Material:
Most yoga mats are usually made of PVC. PVC stands for polyvinyl chloride. Earlier, people preferred PVC mats as they are inexpensive when compared to other materials. However, with the advancement of technology, people nowadays prefer yoga mats made of natural rubber.
Some studies have shown that PVC may be a carcinogen. PVC is also hard to recycle. Thus, people now prefer natural rubber yoga mats because they are as easily available as PVC mats. They are eco-friendly as well as easy to recycle. Rubber mats are somewhat inexpensive as well. Hence they may be a great option if you are just starting out.
People whose yoga asanas require a lot of sitting and lying down, prefer padded mats. Padded yoga mats provide extra cushioning and a lot more support as compared to a standard yoga mat. However, they don’t offer a good grip. Therefore, extra padded mats are not recommended for beginners whose yoga styles require vigorous movements.
However, if you are allergic to latex, avoid using a natural rubber yoga mat. Go for a different material such as jute or cotton. Also, keep in mind to check the mat for nasty metals like cadmium or lead.
7. Consider The Type Of Yoga That You Practice:
The type of yoga mat you purchase also depends on the type of yoga that you practice.
If you are a beginner, you can compromise on the quality of the yoga mat. You may decide after a while that yoga is not for you, so make sure you don’t regret purchasing an expensive one. As you figure out how your body responds to yoga, you get better at figuring out your interests too. You can then invest more money on your yoga mat.
8. Keep Your Budget In Mind:
We should set a budget before buying anything. The same thing applies while you are out there purchasing a yoga mat. There are various types of yoga mats as per the requisites of a user, available in the market. Further, the price range of yoga mats naturally increases with added features.
The first thing that should do before buying a yoga mat is to understand what you need in a yoga mat. As long as you know what your requirements are, it is easy for you to maneuver amongst various products.
9. What Catches Your Eye And Helps You to Focus?
If you think that a yoga mat is always dull and can never be pretty, you are wrong! There are so many yoga mat options available in the market with a vibrant array of colors and prints to choose from.
Believe it or not, your yoga mat can inspire you to practice more. You will look at it, and it will remind you of your commitment. From the moment you unroll it and stand on it, you will be in a more focused mindset. That is why the yoga mats matter.
Top 13 Best Yoga Mats For Beginners 2021
1. BalanceFrom GoYoga All-Purpose Yoga Mat
The 71 inches long and 24 inches wide All-Purpose Yoga Mat by BalanceFrom ensures comfort for people of all sizes and shapes. This mat comes in a range of seven different colors. A carrying strap is also provided with this yoga mat.
This premium all-purpose yoga mat comes with double-sided non-slip surfaces. The surfaces ensure an excellent slip-resistant advantage to prevent injuries during practice. With high density foam material and ½ inches thickness, this mat comfortably cushions your spine, hips, knees and elbows on hard floors.
This mat provides excellent resilience which allows you to keep your balance while practicing different styles of yoga. The surfaces of the mat sticks with wooden as well as other floors, thus providing a great grip. It does not slip at all. Even if you do body weight resistance and strengthening exercises, this mat ensures the perfect grip for it.
According to the users’ reviews, this mat has a latex-kind of odor but it is not that strong. The water resistant technology of this mat makes it easy to clean with soapy water.
The length of the free strap included with the mat is adjustable. The loops have velcro ends for more comfortable and better hold. Easy strapping and lightweight technology is added to this mat for easy transport and storage.
This mat is exclusively manufactured and sold on the BalanceFrom Amazon store.
2. Sivan Health and Fitness Yoga Mat
This durable yoga mat by Sivan Health And Fitness is available in eight vibrant colors. The mats 71 inches length and 24 inches width is perfect for most people. Sivan Health And Fitness is a reputed brand which ensures high quality health and fitness resources.
Made with durable NBR foam, it ensures stability. The specially designed memory foam is gentle to your knees and other joints, thus preventing any injuries. Its non-skid technology ensures a firm grip and provides exceptional balance and support. The ½ inches extra thickness not only provides adequate padding but also holds up exceptionally well over time.
Measuring 24 inches wide and 71 inches long, this mat adds comfort to your yoga workouts. The optimum thickness of this mat is perfect for Pilates and stretching and toning workouts. With a ribbed surface on one side and a smooth surface on the other side, this mat allows you to establish a firm grip with the floor. Its non-slip technology has made it popular amongst beginners as well as long-term practitioners.
It is undoubtedly one of the best yoga mat for beginners as they are not accustomed to most asanas and tend to hurt themselves by slipping. This mat is also easy to clean and is made of long-lasting material.
This mat also features an integrated carry strap. If you are a beginner and have joined yoga classes, this mat is best for you, considering its easy portability. It can be easily rolled-up for ease of storage.
If you are looking for a high-quality, durable yet inexpensive yoga mat, this yoga mat by Sivan Health And Fitness might be one of your best options.
3. Aurorae Eco Friendly Yoga Mat
With a dimension 72*24 inches, this mat is for men, women as well as kids. It is specially designed to draw the potential within all users. It is available in many different colors and exciting New Northern Lights/Impressions designs. The vibrancy of the colors and designs illuminates energy and makes it fun to use.
These mats have been tested for toxins such as phthalates, phenols, PAHS, latex and silicone and have been reported as non toxic They are eco-safe with rosin included.
Aurorae Eco Friendly Yoga Mats are of just the right weight for doing aerobics, Pilates, yoga and even outdoor activities like camping. They are made of premium material, hence are lightweight. Thus, they are easily portable and you can take it for classes or even to go camping or fishing!
Because of their smooth texture, these mats provide a magical experience to their users. Because of its adequate padding, it is one of the best yoga mat for beginners. The mat also provides a great grip during practice. Also, the mat’s optimum thickness ensures that your body’s energy doesn’t get transferred to the ground due to grounding effect.
However, these yoga mats by Aurorae are a bit expensive for people who are just starting out with yoga, as they may decide after a while that yoga is not for them. So, keep your budget in mind and if you can afford it, this mat is one of your best options.
4. Gaiam Yoga Mats
These mats by Gaiam have a premium thickness of 6 mm and are lightweight. Gaiam yoga mats are available in so many exquisite prints that will startle you at first glance. Coming in 41 different colors and prints, there is a whole lot of variety to choose from.
These mats feature a non-slip surface that prevents the user from slipping. It allows you to maintain balance during Pilatesand and other various floor exercises as well. The non-slip texture of these mats provides enhanced traction. The enhanced traction ensures the ultimate grip during vigorous workouts.
If you have decided to start practicing yoga due to your joint problems or pressure sores, this mat is perfect for you. The extra thickness provided by these mats offer all the extra cushioning that your joints need during yoga or other fitness routines.
The superior grip that these mats by Gaiam provide, prevents the user from slipping, thus preventing injuries. It is often found that with increased thickness, most of the mats are not good at providing stability. However, this is not the case with these Gaiam Yoga Mats. The exceptional grip provided by these mats helps you with stability while maintaining balance for different postures or asanas.
In addition, these mats are free from toxins such as PVC, DEHP, DBP, BBP, DINP, DIDP as well as DNOP. This makes the mats eco-friendly and safe to use. However, many customers have complained that the mats smell a little. In order to get rid of the odor, unroll and air them out for two to three days before use. This completely removes the odor that might be present while unwrapping.
These yoga mats come with a free bonus downloadable yoga workout app to help you get started. This is extremely useful for beginners. Laden with so many features, these Gaiam Yoga Mats are, without a doubt, the best yoga mats for beginners. These mats are also lightweight and thus easy to carry around with you.
What’s more, with so many features this mat is not as expensive as people would expect it to be!
5. AmazonBasics Extra Thick Exercise Mat
Available in seven different vibrant colors, this mat AmazonBasics is a great exercise mat for yoga, Pilates and other workout routines. There is a carrying strap included with the mat for easy transport as well.
This ½ inch extra thick yoga mat is perfect for home as well as studio use. The high quality of the mat not only defines your personal workout space, but it also creates a beneficial layer of cushioning between you and the floor. The cushioning prevents your joints from getting hurt.
This mat can be used not only for yoga practice but can also be used for Pilates, stretching, meditation and other strengthening or restorative floor exercises. The textured surface of this mat provides enhanced traction. This reliable traction is very important for stability and to maintain poses. This mat is not only useful for beginners who are new to floor exercise routines but also for experienced practitioners.
The extra thickness that this mat provides cushions your feet when standing and stretching. According to many reliable user reviews, these mats support your body throughout all types of routines, especially during restorative poses.
The AmazonBasics Yoga Mat is made of durable foam that is both lightweight as well as strong. It is designed to withstand everyday use. Also, with the strap in place, you can slip the mat over your shoulder for gym-bag-carrying style. The strap provides secure storage and is easily transportable.
With so many features, this mat by AmazonBasics is a tough competitor to beat on the list of the best yoga mat for beginners.
6. HemingWeigh High Density Yoga Mat
These mats by HemingWeigh are not only individually available, but are also available in packs of two as well as packs of three, in five different colors. The 71 inches long and 24 inches wide yoga mat ensures comfort for people of all shapes and sizes.
This mat is made of high density foam which supports your spine and provides firm support against a wooden floor. It ensures to positively transform your yoga practice with unparalleled comfort and support, and has rightly proved to do so. The mat’s luxurious memory foam relieves pressure points in all yoga postures. This also protects your wrists, knees, elbows, neck and ankles.
The mat’s non-skid ridges ensure that the mat never slips while you are practicing on it. It offers exceptional resilience which helps you to keep your balance during any exercise. So it doesn’t matter if you are a beginner, this mat is perfectly safe. It is rated as one of the best yoga mats for beginners on Amazon.
This mat is manufactured using easy-to-clean and long-lasting material. After use, you can quickly clean this mat with soapy water and pat dry with a towel. It makes for the perfect travelling companion if you never wish to give up your routine workout even when far from home. It is lightweight yet strong. The mat comes with a convenient sling which allows effortless portability. Therefore if you travel a lot, this might be one of your best options.
7. Spoga Premium Yoga Mat
This 72 inches long and 24 inches yoga mat by Spoga is available in eight different colors. This mat includes a self strapping system featuring two elastic straps.
This ultra thick mat with a thickness of ½ inches with specially designed Spoga memory foam absorbs the impact. It absorbs a lot of pressure on your body and provides exceptional comfort. This prevents your knees and other joints from getting injured while still providing good grip.
This mat features a double-sided non-slip surface that helps prevent injuries. However, it might be a little too spongy for super intense balancing. The self-strapping system makes it easily portable. You might find indents from the straps on the mat, but if you lay it out long enough, it will go back to flat.
The textured non-slip surfaces of the mat provide excellent traction and grips the floor to prevent injuries. This mat’s skin is is moisture-resistant. It is easy to clean and extremely durable. It is also inexpensive and is a great option if you are just starting out on yoga.
However, this mat by Spoga is not as great as Gaiam Yoga Mats (mentioned above in this list) considering both come in the same price range.
8. Gaiam Reversible Yoga Mat
This perfect-for-home/studio-use Gaiam yoga mat is 68 inches long and 24 inches wide. This mat provides a premium thickness of 6 mm which ensures the safety and comfort you need while exercising.
Available in 37 beautiful prints, this mat features a reversible design to suit any mood. This helps to keep you motivated and focused. However, these mats might release an unpleasant odor when first wrapped. To get rid of this odor, unroll and keep it out in the air for two to three days before use.
The unique design of this mat enhances proper alignment and maintain poses. This durable yet lightweight yoga mat is extra thick. The ultra thickness of this mat provides additional cushioning that your joints need during any fitness routine.
Similar to the non-reversible Gaiam yoga mats, this reversible mat with its non-slip surfaces provides exceptional traction and continues the legacy of Gaiam Yoga Mats. It also features a downloadable yoga workout app which is extremely helpful for beginners.
This mat is a more expensive than other mats but is worth your every penny.
This is by far the best yoga mat for beginners according to the ratings and reviews of the users.
9. ProsourceFit Yoga Mat
ProsourceFit is a brand well-known for making high quality products for strength and resistance training, pilates, muscle recovery and yoga. This yoga mat by ProsourceFit is available in eight vibrant colors. The ½ inch high density thick foam layer provides extra cushioning and comfort. The high density NBR foam provides support for sensitive joints. The optimum thickness of this mat makes it perfect for versatile yoga, pilates, stretching as well as abdominal workouts.
The ribbed surfaces of this mat provides a great grip for your hands and feet so that you do not slip. The mat also provides exceptional traction when used on wooden floors or other slick surfaces.
This mat is made of water-resistant NBR rubber. ProsourceFit ensures the durability of this yoga mat. The material of this mat prevents the sweat from being soaked in, thus preventing unwanted odor. However, this might make the mat slippery after half an hour of your workout.
This mat is however, easy to clean. It can be quickly wiped down with a damp cloth. This mat also helps you with the painful areas of your body. It excels in asanas such as savasana, boat pose, bridge pose, camel pose, etc. You can try this mat for slow, restorative yoga too. The non-slip surfaces provide greater stability.
To make storage and carrying easier, this mat comes with a free yoga mat sling. The strap is unattached and the loops slide on and off each side easily. This mat is one of the best yoga mat for beginners as it is manufactured using TPE technology for providing exceptional traction and non-slip surfaces.
10. Yoga Cloud Ultra Thick Yoga Mat By Crown Sporting Goods
This yoga mat is perfect for those who are looking for a sturdier, safer and slip-proof alternative to a standard yoga mat. This mat is available in four colors only.
The high density foam of this mat is four times thicker than an average yoga mat and two times thicker than ½ inches thick mats. This protects your joints better than any other standard yoga mat but also comes with a higher price. This mat is perfect for physical therapy, cushioning weak joints and extra knee-support.
Also, the ultra cushioning of this mat actually takes care of all the pressure joints and is really beneficial for certain asanas and poses. The ridges on the surface of this mat makes it slip-proof. In addition, the moisture-resistant technology of this mat’s surfaces makes it a lot safer. This yoga mat is a multipurpose mat, great for yoga,pilates, weight lifting as well as hot yoga.
The feature that makes this mat different from other mats is its high level shock absorption technology. This mat’s ridges create a cooling effect and captures excess moisture, so you never lose grip when it counts. This mat by Crown Sporting Goods gives a really tough competition to the other products on this list as it is rated the second best yoga mat for beginners.
11. Incline Fit Ananda 1 Inch Extra Thick Exercise Mat
This one inch extra thick mat comes in seven vibrant colors. It is often difficult to focus and maintain deep meditation due to discomfort. However, this mat by Incline Fit provides a perfect balance of cushioning and firmness to ensure comfort as you meditate as well as exercise. Thank you Ananda!
This mat is not only for meditation but also for workouts such as pilates, stretching and other floor workout routines. It provides you the comfort and support that you need, especially if you are a beginner.
The non-slip surfaces of this exercise mat keeps you steady while the thick yoga mat stays in its place against the floor. This allows you to focus on your meditation or workout routine, instead of the mat. It allows you to focus on your movements and also prevents injuries.
The ultra thickness of this yoga mat allows it to endure everyday use. Its rough and tough structure and material used, makes it long-lasting regardless of the intensity of workouts you do on it. The mat’s thickness also helps to alleviate stress on sensitive areas like the hands, joints, hips and knees. This makes it easier to complete your exercise routine. This mat is also proven to be free of phthalate, heavy metal and latex.
The mat gives a harmless odor when unwrapped. However, it is easy to clean with soap and water. For best results, keep the mat out in the air for two to three days before use. This mat doesn’t really have a commendable sweat-absorbing qualities.
This mat comes in an average price range and is hence affordable. Even if you are a beginner, it won’t cost you much. The only bad review that we found about this mat is that its plastic-like odor that can’t be gotten rid of easily.
With an affordable price range, this is one of the best yoga mats for beginners.
12. IUGA Eco Friendly Yoga Mat
Perfect for home as well as studio use, this yoga mat by IUGA features the latest TPE technology foam. Available in seven reversible designs, this mat is advantageous to traditional PVC and latex yoga mats.
Its eco-friendly and non-slip design is perfect to use for all types of yogas. The reversible sticky texture of the mat provides exceptional traction to the user. The specially designed cellular structure of this yoga mat provides reliable slip resistance and gives you stability in all asanas as well as other workouts.
This yoga mat also comes with alignment lines on it that help to maintain the correct body posture in several types of yoga poses. Even with a thickness of 6mm, most customers find it to be the perfect balance of weight and cushion. These mats provides optimum cushioning and support to your joints while still allowing you to grip the floor for asanas where you need a strong connection with the ground.
The quality adjustable strap adds extra value to the mat and ensures easy portability. Made using the latest TPE foam technology, it is quite lightweight despite of this extra large size and thickness. Therefore, if you are a beginner and have decided to go out for yoga classes, this mat by IUGA might prove to be one of your best companions. This mat is also a good choice if you are looking for a thick and lightweight yet inexpensive yoga mat.
13. Aimerday Premium Print Yoga Mat
Made using upgraded premium eco-friendly material, this 6mm thick mat is available in eight exclusively unique prints. The material of this yoga mat by Aimerday offers latest technology improvement over traditional yoga mats.
These Aimerday mats are non-toxic and SGS certified 6P yoga mats and are free from PVC, phthalates and latex. The extra large size of this mat ensures enough personal space in order for you to workout independently.
It is a triple layer yoga mat with the unique anti-tearing middle layer mesh which is designed to withstand everyday use. Due to its anti-skid surface, this mat provides excellent traction and a superior grip. The exceptional resilience of this mat ensures stability during poses that acquire a lot of focus and balancing.
With the advanced printing technology from Aimerday, you don’t need to worry about the prints fading. The mat’s stylish design keeps you motivated and focused. The optimum density of this triple-layered mat prevents your joints from injuries, thus ensuring your safety.
These mats come in a similar price range when compared to the yoga mats by Gaiam. Because of Aimerday’s five star customer service, this mat has bagged itself a great position amongst the top competitors on this list of the best yoga mats for beginners.
Best Yoga Mats For Beginners – Conclusion
We have been reminded of the importance of exercise time and again. If you don’t want to indulge yourself in vigorous workout routines, practicing yoga and meditating is suitable option for you. However, you cannot practice any type of workout without the right gear. The most important gear for yoga practitioners, be it a beginner or an experienced person, is a yoga mat.
Yoga is one of the few spiritual disciplines that encourages the use of props to enhance and deepen your practice. Almost all the yoga studios provide yoga mats. But you would not want other people’s sweat on you, would you? The usage of the mats provided in the studios is not only unhygienic but also not that convenient if you want to practice yoga at your home apart from the studio.
For beginners, there are quite a few qualities to consider before buying a yoga mat, all of which have been discussed above in the article. Slightly thick yoga mats are suited for beginners as they are not accustomed to various asanas, poses, or workout routines and are more prone to cramps and other injuries.
It is true that thick yoga mats do not provide the desired amount of stability and balance that you need while practicing yoga. However, in this article we have enlisted quite a number of premium yoga mats that are thick yet provide its users stability and the desired grip. The beginners usually don’t plan on investing a lot of money on their first yoga mat. We are well aware of this fact and have also enlisted some affordable yoga mats as well.
In this article, we have discussed the factors to be considered before buying a suitable yoga mat for yourself. In addition to this, we have also provided you with a list of some of the best yoga mats for beginners.
So, whatever your reason for starting yoga, there is a mat out there for you. You just need to consider some important factors and you’ll find that it isn’t a cumbersome task to choose a yoga mat after all.