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Is a Pricey Yoga Mat Worth It?

Reasons to Splurge on a Yoga Mat

There's some fitness gear to save money on, but how about yoga mats? You can grab a mat from Target for less than $20 or special order a Manduka PRO for over $100. But is it worth it to drop so much cash on a yoga mat? Here are five reasons the answer should be yes.

  1. You'll save money: When buying a pricier mat, it costs more upfront, but it's often because they are thicker, durable, and made from better-quality materials. A cheaper mat, in comparison, can begin to flake after less than a year's use. In the end, you'll actually save money since you avoid any replacement fees.
  2. For you and the planet: Since expensive mats tend to be made with higher-quality materials that last longer, it means buying one mat instead of five — or more! — in your lifetime. Not only are fewer mats ending up in landfills, but you also cut back on personal consumption.
  3. Ooh, the feel: When you come into your first Down Dog on a pricier mat, you'll notice the difference in smoothness, stickiness, and how it's more dense. All of these factors contribute to fewer distractions and a safer, more comfortable practice.
  4. Meet for class? Sure! Investing in a more expensive mat can inspire you to practice more, not only because it feels more luxurious, but also to get your money's worth. It'd be a shame to have a $70 mat sitting in your closet.
  5. Hey, why not? Yoga is a pretty gear-free activity, so besides a mat, there really isn't much else to splurge on (aside from the perfect pair of yoga pants). So you might as well go for the best.

Continue reading for a list of pricier mats worth the splurge.

  • Manduka Black Mat PRO ($94-$104): It weighs seven pounds, is 1/4-inch thick, and is backed by a lifetime guarantee. It's made from a blend of polyester and eco-certified PVC, with emissions-free manufacturing. Also available in blue, red, and deep purple, I've owned one for 14 years and it's just like the day I bought it.
  • Manduka PROlite Mat (select colors on sale for $65): It weighs four pounds, is 3/16-inches thick, and is also backed by a lifetime guarantee and made from a blend of polyester and eco-certified PVC. I bought this lighter-weight mat for traveling 13 years ago, and it looks practically brand new.
  • Lululemon The Mat ($68): It weighs 5.5 pounds, is 5-mm thick, and is made of rubber and latex with a polyurethane coating to offer grippiness, plus an antimicrobial additive to prevent mold and mildew.
  • Jade Harmony Professional Yoga Mat ($70): It weighs 4.5 pounds, is 3/16-inches thick, and is made completely of natural rubber (no PVCs, but it has a strong rubber smell). This mat won't last as long as the above mats, but it's completely biodegradable.

Source: Flickr User tiffany assman

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