Let's face it - not everyone can afford a gorgeous looking, professional yoga mat. But just because it's top of the line does not make it the only quality option. With the growing market of yoga practitioners, there are many new yoga mat manufacturers out there that keep their client in mind, so in spite of the fact that they produce cheap yoga mats, they don't sacrifice the thickness and grip that is oh so important when doing our jump backs and jump throughs.
A Word of Caution - Cheap Yoga Mats Can Come at a Cost
One should not overlook the importance of a decent mat. In fact, poorly made cheap yoga mats can actually cause injuries. A mat that is too thin and too slippery, in other words, too cheap, can lead to bruised elbows and knees, or worse. That's why finding a good cheap mat is like finding water in an oasis. The operational word here is good. The reality of yoga does contrast quite starkly with the austere and simple way of living that yoga started out to be. But in the city, where yoga is practiced differently, maybe some concessions must be made in the name of comfort. This is where your wallet might hurt a bit. But sometimes you have to weigh your options with a bit more perspective. A mat may be cheap, but how long will it last? And if you buy another cheap yoga mat to replace it, you might as well have made the investment in a higher quality, slightly more expensive one.
Affordable AND Sustainable?
But never fear, like we said, there are many alternatives out there right now. Even better, many companies are able to design cheap yoga mats without harming our environment, using recyclable and earth-friendly materials that are organic enough, but are surprisingly durable and long-wearing. For example, there several mates made out of PVC foam, without the use of toxic plasticizers or phthalates, that make them environmentally-friendly. After all, a good yogi believes in the practice of clean living in all aspects of life, not just in the exercise routine.
Other factors you might want to consider in choosing your mat is the amount of use you'll be getting out of it on a weekly basis. Certainly if you practice more or less regularly, your mat is bound to show signs of wear and tear is a shorter amount of time. This is why it's important to wipe it down with a good, preferably organic, yoga mat cleaner such as Messy Bessy, or at least a white vinegar solution. Otherwise the bacteria from your sweat can start to eat away at your poor mat. It's very easy to take your mat for granted, but if you think about it, how would you be able to practice at all without one?