If you’ve been practicing Yoga for a while, you might find that you’ve become quite attached to your mat, despite everything that Yoga teaches us about ‘attachment’. I have to admit that I still have my very first Yoga mat and I still use it often. It’s the mat I return to when I really need to feel that I’m ‘home’. Sometimes I use it with a cotton rug or anti-slip towel on top as there are holes worn where my hands and feet have rubbed the mat away….
There are so many Yoga mats to choose from now and its difficult to know where to begin when choosing a new one. People are becoming more and more conscious about the materials used to produce Yoga mats. After all, they are going to come into contact with your skin and protect your joints from injury, not to mention the fact that we should consider the impact of the production process on the planet. Although manufacturers have now found ways of making synthetic materials without the harmful by-products and toxic additives, there is still a move towards the use of more natural materials to make Yoga mats.
The lovely people at ecoYoga came up with a solution to the problem of the man-made, synthetic mat. The ecoYoga mat is made from Jute, and 100% natural rubber. Jute is a sustainable plant grown in India & Bangladesh (in a 4 month period just prior to the rainy season) on land that would otherwise be dormant at that time. The Jute that ecoYoga use, is provided by a Scottish company who have long term family relations with the producers in Bangladesh. The natural rubber/latex is a lectin from the bark of the Havea Brasiliensis tree, these trees can be ‘tapped’ for up to 30 years. EcoYoga’s raw rubber is currently taken from the International market. The mats themselves are made in the UK.
The ecoYoga mats give a beautiful combination of ‘sticky’ and natural surface on which to practice. The natural rubber gives great grip and the jute/hessian gives every mat its own unique character and integrity. So with the ecoYoga mat, you’re getting a Yoga mat made from plant-based sustainable materials with excellent non-slip grip which is biodegradable and ethical. You can even wash your ecoYoga mat in the shower to keep it fresh. Sometimes, there is a slight ‘trade-off’ in that eco friendly mats can sometimes not be as durable as the synthetic mats, but this depends on your practice entirely. I have a teacher friend who practices Ashtanga Vinyasa 5 days a week and she’s had her ecoYoga mat for about 8 years and counting… it’s showing signs of wear, but she still loves it as much as ever and it’s still going!
You can purchase ecoYoga here at Yoga Bliss but if you’d like to have some advice or have a chat about ecoYoga mats before you buy, please just email or telephone us.
With warmest wishes to you