Best yoga mats for practicing your downward dog and sun salutations

(Liforme)

As all yogis know a good yoga mat, (as well as the right activewear gear and yoga blocks) is one of the most important accessories when it comes to your practice – whether you love a sweaty hot yoga session or prefer a morning vinyasa flow.

It doesn’t matter if you’re a newbie or a regular on the mat – if it’s seen better days it won’t support you as you move, and no one wants to be slipping all over the place mid-flow. But, with so many brands offering different mats, from non-slip to sustainable, it can be tough to know what should matter most when shopping for a new one.

What should you look for in a good yoga mat?

The mat’s grip is the first thing you need to look at, says Gerry Lopez, the founder of Sadhana Live: “Physical yoga is all about holding poses and maintaining positions for a set amount of time. By ensuring your mat has a grip, (especially when you have sweaty palms) you won’t slip in poses like the downward dog and headstands. A grip ensures stability and safety and eases your mind when in more difficult positions. ”

The thickness will also be important when making your choice, and anything below 0.5mm, although light, won’t feel cushioned enough as you move around the mat. Most medium mats have a thickness of 3mm, although some yoga mats go up to 6mm, but as Lopez says, it takes time and a few poses to realize what you want out of a yoga mat.

“It all depends on where you practice and what surface is beneath the mat. It is also a personal preference and how it feels to you, your joints, and your ways of practicing, ”he says.

While Lopez also explains that other factors such as size, how easy it is to clean and transport, and the material it is made from could be more of a preference. “If you’re a beginner or practice infrequently, a basic mat might do but if you’re a keen yogi and practice several times a week investing more money into a mat that is durable and comfortable would be better.”

Not sure where to shop for the best yoga mat? We guide you through the best options

Fable pro grip yoga mat

Quickly establishing themselves as one of the go-to brands for practicing your sun salutations, Fable Pro’s mats are made from eco-sensitive materials. The non-slip technology on the bottom of the mat means you won’t slide around mid pose, while its dotted design is great for beginners or anyone who wants to be properly positioned – they’re there to align your standing postures.

With eight colors to choose from, they’re made with a fade-free design and eco-sensitive materials – so they’ll last for years, whether you practice every day or once a week. At 4mm they’re great for support, while the 2mm designs are perfect for traveling with.

Buy now £ 69.00, Selfridges

Halcyon Kin Yoga Mat

This pretty-in-pink yoga mat with rose gold flecks will get you noticed in your next yoga class with its sunset vibes.

The mats were created by Laura Pearce, a yoga teacher and breathwork practitioner; she brings her knowledge of what is vital for the right yoga mat, along with her passion for sustainable materials. Made with a 10 percent natural rubber base it also had a tread on the reverse that grips the floor, allowing for stability in any pose. At a 2mm thickness it’s light enough to travel with and comes with a yoga strap.

Buy now £ 55.00, Amazon

The MBX MAT Mills

Les Mills is known for its tough cardio and strength workouts, but with at-home fitness becoming the norm they also delved into the world of yoga. This workout mat is perfect for more intense workouts, as well as a gentle flow.

With a bright red surface, it’s striking from the offset and made with high-density eco-PVC for added stability. The flip side is made with an anti-slip coating – so whether your yoga practice brings you out in a sweat or you prefer HIIT classes you’ll feel anchored throughout.

Buy now £ 60.00, Decathlon

Mint Velvet blue sticky yoga mat

If you’re on a budget but you’re still looking for a yoga mat that can perform well for varying yoga practices this mat from Mint Velvet has extra cushioning and grip. Also available in gray and orange the mat, priced at just over £ 20, is made with high quality and durable materials, giving it longevity and comfort.

One of the lighter and thinner mats on our list at just 0.5mm thickness, you may need to double it over for extra protection on your knees and elbows, when performing particular poses. Our vote goes to the striking blue or orange versions, which will both stand out in your next class.

Buy now £ 22.00, Mint Velvet

Yogamatters Eco Rise Yoga Mat

Different from many other yoga mats the Yogamatters Eco Rise have a unique cotton-blend mesh surface that gives it a superior grip and durability. Available in mood-enhancing colors, such as sunshine yellow, the mats are designed to blend into your living area. Eco-friendly, the base is made from natural tree rubber which has been sustainably harvested and is free from toxic chemicals and dye. With a medium thickness, at 3mm, you’ll feel well supported throughout your yoga practice.

Buy now £ 45.00, Amazon

Grateful rainbow yoga mat

This bright pink mat will brighten up your yoga practice even on the dreariest of mornings.

The brand spent years developing their GripForMe technology, which means their mats, including this pink grateful rainbow version, have the right grip whether you’re doing a Hatha flow or a standard vinyasa.

Eco-friendly, Liforme uses high-quality, non-toxic and planet-friendly materials – including a natural rubber base and an eco-polyurethane top surface. Their mats also have their own original alignment system printed on their mats – markers to help as you move through your yoga routines – which are designed to prevent injury and assist with balance in those trickier positions.

Buy now £ 115.00, Liforme

Lorna Jane Ultimate non-slip yoga mat

With a titanium marble finish, this Lorna Jane yoga mat has a non-slip base and a 3mmm thickness. Designed for all types of yoga the mat is as stylish as it is practical.

The design has a longer length than most (180 x 66cm), meaning you can stretch out, or perform those tricker moves without worrying about space, and it’s good for taller yoga fans. The thickness of the mat will also give you more comfort when performing headstands or anything where you need more cushioning. Simply wipe the mat down after use to keep it smelling fresh.

Buy now £ 75.00, Lorna Jane

Charlotte Jade Botanical Palm mat

Plain yoga mats can make your yoga practice feel very Groundhog Day-ish, but this one from Charlotte Jade will brighten up your morning session every time.

Made with a botanical palm design, the designer was inspired by the beautiful Kentia Palm, native to Australia. Charlotte, an illustrator, designed the mats around the theme of nature – with other designs including giraffe and panther patterns. Eco-friendly, the mat is made with natural rubber, so you can flow or do a HIIT class on the mat without a guilty conscience.

If you love the design so much you want it all over your house, her designs have also been made into matching wall art and cushions.

Buy now £ 60.00, Charlotte Jade

Flow State Elements matte collection

Bright and quirky guys will love these super colorful yoga mats. Designed by acclaimed Irish street artist Maser the designs use bold vibrant colors to represent the forest, the sea and the sun.

The mat is made with a microfiber top layer, and the natural rubber base is made with sustainability in mind. Machine washable, it can also be gently hand washed to keep it staying fresh.

It’s biggest draw is that it doubles up as wall art. Built-in eyelets allow you to hang it up ready for guests to admire.

Buy now £ 120.00, Flow State

Lululemon 3mm mat

A favorite among yogis Lululemon’s reversible mat, as it was previously known, has a polyurethane grippy top layer, which means it will retain moisture when you sweat – a fact you’ll appreciate when you’re making your way through a hot Bikram yoga class . The mats come in seven colors and have a marbled design and a natural rubber (FSC certified) base so you can flip them over for more cushioning. Easy to wipe down to keep fresh they also have an antimicrobial additive to prevent mold or mildew from forming.

Buy now £ 78.00, Lululemon

Verdict

If you’re looking for a durable yoga mat that will withstand different poses, from tree to warrior Fable pro grip yoga mat is our favorite. With it’s non-slip technology and postitiong dots on the surface it will guide you through your practice – supporting you as you go. In a range of colors there’s a choice, while it’s also a reasonable price.

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