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Yoga Mats: Expert and User Reviews

By: Lisa Maloney on May 23, 2018

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Mats and Towels for Hot Yoga Our Sources

Yoga Mats: Ratings of Sources

Cam McKenzie Ring, Sept. 25, 2017

Cam McKenzie Ring and several testers compare 10 yoga mats and towels, rating them in several categories including dry traction, wet traction, comfort, durability, portability and ease of care. Comparative rankings in each category, along with overall rankings for each mat, make it easy to judge how they perform in each aspect, and the accompanying reviews are thorough and also comparative. Elsewhere on the site, they also review the Yogitoes Skidless Yoga Towel, which apparently didn't quite fit into this category.

Amy Roberts, May 17, 2018

The author, herself an amateur yogi, consulted with two yoga instructors, a sustainability consulting firm and a professor of microbiology. Together, they suss out not just how well yoga mats perform with heavy use but also how well their environmentally friendly claims hold up, and whether a dirty yoga mat can really make you sick. After intensive research, mats were evaluated for factors like stickiness, thickness, portability, durability and odor.

Editors of Reviews.com, Feb. 16, 2018

The Reviews.com team spent a month researching, polling yoga instructors and testing 16 yoga mats. They ultimately select five top picks and, although they don't receive comparative scores beyond their ranking in a list of five, each mat does receive a thorough review that includes analysis of its grippiness, comfort, maintenance and portability.

Editors of SoMuchYoga, Not Dated

This is the landing page for SoMuchYoga, and it contains links to a vast variety of content, including reviews of yoga mats and towels. Reviews are in-depth and even handed, and each concludes with a hefty list of pros and cons.

Editors of Ekhart Yoga, July 27, 2015

Online yoga video provider Ekhart Yoga reviews 10 yoga mats using several criteria: thickness, stickiness and texture, price, material, eco friendliness, and size and style. The testers, who include Esther Ekhart, staffers and some selected members, recommend several mats as best in distinct categories, including an overall pick for serious yogis, eco-friendliness, anti-slip, budget, travel use and member favorite.

Brandon Quittem, April 3, 2014

Although the date itself hasn't been refreshed, this review is updated for 2017. Author Brandon Quittem, a globe-trotting yogi, compares six popular travel mats in short but informative reviews. Each review includes notes on the mat's real-world performance and factors like weight, durability and stickiness, along with a look at potential downsides. He also includes a comparison chart for evaluating specifications. Elsewhere on this site, yoga towels are also reviewed.

SI Staff, June 29, 2017

An unidentified staffer, who already practices yoga, is given six yoga mats to test. Although all six are reviewed and she finds something nice to say about each of them, only two of them receive unrestrained positive reviews. We like the balance of pros/cons highlighted in each review, although we wish some of the criticism were more straightforward.

Amy Schlinger, May 1, 2018

The author provides a quick run-through of the many features you can choose from in a yoga mat, then recommends highlights eight yoga mats chosen by yoga teachers around the country. On the upside, these picks come from experts with many thousands of hours of practice. On the downside, the short reviews highlight only positives, with no talk of potential drawbacks.

Brett Larkin and Contributors to Yoga Outlet, Not Dated

Well-known yogi Brett Larkin compares seven popular yoga mats in a head-to-head test on material, thickness, weight and stickiness. She gives each mat an overall grade, notes pros and cons, and suggests which type of practice it may be best suited for. Overall, her picks come across more as suggestions than declarations. Elsewhere on the site, Yoga Outlet sells more than 170 yoga mats, with user reviews that provide useful insight into how the mats perform under real world conditions.

Contributors to Amazon, As of May 2018

Amazon is one of the best resources for real-world reviews of yoga mats. Reviews are often quite detailed and even-handed, and some note durability concerns that are often overlooked in other reviews. Many dedicated yogis weigh in to discuss the merits of one mat over another that they have owned.

Editors of ACE Fitness, Not Dated

Editors review two popular yoga towels, the Yogitoes Skidless and Manduka eQua, in the American Council on Exercise Workout Watchdog column. The reviews are thorough, covering size, weight, feel, and slippage, and appear to be based on hands-on testing. They are also balanced, noting pros and cons for both towels. No comparative scores are assigned.

Candace Moore, Nov. 26, 2014

This guide by Candace Moore, a yoga instructor and frequent traveler, looks at four popular travel mats, comparing them directly on surface feel/stickiness, thickness/weight, and portability. Pros and cons are noted for each mat, and there are helpful photos of how compactly each mat folds or rolls up. She calls out three mats for different useful aspects, but ultimately settles on one overall pick for travel use.

Katie Arnold, March 2, 2016

Katie Arnold's presents several picks for this article on the 12 best yoga mats, and the accompanying blurbs do a good job of describing why each one is a good pick. Some also note cons. However, while the article does refer to "testers," it's unclear how these particular mats were chosen or what kind of testing was performed.

Editors of Yoga Journal, August 3, 2016

Editors round up 16 of their favorite yoga mats, which include several long-standing favorites and a few lesser-known, newer yoga mats. While the introduction indicates hands-on testing, it's unclear whether that testing was systematic or more casual. Blurbs are short and informative but do not note any cons of each mat.

Elsewhere In This Report
Recently Updated
Yoga Mats buying guide

What every best Yoga Mats has:

  • Adequate thickness for your preferred style of yoga.
  • Adequate length and width.
  • A durable, easy-to-clean material.

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