Although it was once practiced only by a few, yoga has become a popular form of exercise for many Americans. With a focus on flexibility and self-healing, the health benefits of practicing yoga can be profound. Here we will discuss yoga in more detail, as well as what to look for in a high-quality yoga mat.

 What is Yoga?

Yoga is an ancient Hindu practice that places a great deal of focus on deep breathing, meditation, and holding specific body postures that promote strength, balance, and flexibility. Yoga is a practice that places importance on discipline and mastery of the physical and emotional aspects of an individual. Those who practice yoga testify to the many physical and emotional health benefits that can be experienced by those who gain mastery of this skill set.



Health Benefits of Practicing Yoga

 There are many physical, mental, and emotional health benefits that can come about from practicing yoga. Below are a few of the most commonly experienced benefits that people experience when they practice yoga regularly.

Physical Benefits

  • Increased flexibility

  • Increased muscle tone

  • Improved lung capacity

  • Increased vitality and overall energy

  • Properly functioning metabolism that promotes a healthy weight

  • Lowered risk of injury from other forms of exercise or sports

  • Improved circulation

  • Healthier cardiovascular system

Mental Benefits

  • Better stress management

  • Improved concentration

  • Less risk of depression and anxiety

  • Improved sleep

  • Better mental clarity

Many people rely on yoga as a way to help wipe away the stresses of the day, especially as it relates to work-induced stress and anxiety. Practicing yoga after a hectic day at work can help you to unwind and relax, promoting better sleep and a renewed outlook on life. Recent studies also indicate that practicing yoga can boost social connections in important relationships, relieve depression and insomnia, and promote a balance between the physical and emotional aspects of an individual. This often makes for a healthier, happier, and more carefree person overall.

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Does a Quality Yoga Mat Make a Difference?

A high-quality yoga mat can provide an extra measure of comfort and support, especially when attempting to master more difficult positions. There are many types of yoga mats on the market, so how does a person select the right one for their needs? There is no perfect yoga mat and no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to selecting one. However, there are important to features to consider when looking for one. Thanks to a team at, conducted months of research to find just that. They spoke with yoga professionals and after spending months testing the top products on the market they found which materials and features to look out for in a quality mat. These are some of their suggestions:

Thickness: The thickness of yoga mats can vary a great deal. While it might seem that opting for a thicker mat would provide more comfort, too much thickness may also prevent you from being able to feel the floor beneath you in order to remain stable. Some trial and error may be necessary to find the level of thickness that is most comfortable for you.

Material: Many standard yoga mats are made of PVC. If buying a yoga mat that is environmentally friendly is important to you, it might be wise to consider one made from jute, recycled rubber, or even organic cotton materials. Avoid rubber yoga mats if you have any type of latex allergy. Otherwise, simply choose a material that resonates the most with you in terms of comfort and environmental impact.

Stickiness: Sticky yoga mats provide an extra measure of protection from slipping, which can lead to potentially dangerous injuries. They can also help you hold difficult poses for a longer period of time as your yoga skills improve. PVC yoga mats provide the maximum amount of stickiness, so choose this material if having a sticky mat is important to you.

Texture: Choosing a textured yoga mat can provide additional traction that can help you hold difficult poses and maneuver in a much easier manner. Natural materials such as jute have a built-in texturized surface, but other types of yoga mats may be manufactured with surface bumps to help boost traction and support. The additional grip that this texture provides will prevent slippage, even if you sweat a great deal during your yoga practices.

Yoga is no longer an exercise limited to those who have an avid interest in meditation or spiritual healing. Once practiced mainly by a small percentage of the population, yoga in its various forms has become a mainstream method of exercising both body and mind. Practicing yoga can provide a wealth of physical and emotional health benefits for young and old alike. Additionally, a high-quality yoga mat can increase comfort and safety for those practicing this form of exercise. By choosing a quality yoga mat, yoga enthusiasts can master more difficult positions safely and effectively. This will ultimately lead to a lasting relationship with what is considered one of the best ways to improve one’s physical and mental conditioning.