If You Are Wondering About What Size Yoga Mat Do you Need? Then This Article Is For You. Here, We Take You Through The Simple Step By Step Process To Help Understand What Size Yoga Mat Do I Need. Stay Tuned.
What Size Yoga Mat Do I Need
As yoga practitioners, we all know the importance of a yoga mat. Yoga mats provide firm support and grip to do various kinds of asanas in yoga. However, more often than expected we face challenges when it comes to yoga mats.
For example, if you are tall you might face challenges about the size of a standard yoga mat that measures 68 inches long and 24 inches wide. So when you are wondering about “what size yoga mat do I need”, this means the standard size of 68 x 24 inches, is not the right size.
Available Sizes for Yoga Mats in the Market
There are a plethora of sizes of Yoga Mats available in the market. However, there's no ideal size of a yoga mat. It completely depends on your height and width to do yoga in the most comfortable way. Certain manufacturers also bring mats to the markets that are slightly larger or a bit smaller than the average mat size according to the demand of the market.
How To Find The Right Size For Yourself
For Taller Yogis
If your height is shorter than 6 feet, then the standard size of the yoga mats will be ok for you. If you are considered to be a “tall person” you may find that sometimes your body parts are rolling over outside the mat or hanging off the edge. This will deviate your mind from performing complicated yoga postures. In that case, a longer mat should work for you better. Longer mats help you to lie down or take rest too during yoga postures. These mats measure around 72 or 74 inches for the taller group of people in the world of yoga.
For The Standard Height Yogis
The standard yoga mats are made for people with height around 5’8” or below. If you belong to the taller group of people or plus size or simply want a longer and wider mat (for comfort), you will find lengths of the mats ranging from 70 to 74 inches. You will also find mats which are 84 inches long too and even beyond.
Here is a informative video on the topic.
Factors to Consider While Buying A Yoga Mat
#1 Perform These 3 Simple Postures
Before buying a yoga mat, you should first try these 3 yoga postures to determine which length you should go for:
- Downward-Facing Dog
- Corpse Pose or vigorous flowing Ashtanga practices.
- The Four-Limbed Staff Pose.
#2 Mat Thickness
The size a yoga mat is not only determined by its length but also by its thickness. The thickness is something you should pay close attention too. A standard mat should have a thickness of 3 mm whereas a lightweight mat, which is specially designed for travelling has a thickness of 1.5 mm.If you are suffering from knee or back pain, or injuries or any other type of surgical interventions, then you must go for a mat with a thickness of 4 to 5-millimeter, which is thicker than the usual standard mat. However, thicker mats do make some of the balancing yoga poses difficult, for example, the Tree or Half-Moon pose, but then your safety and comfort are more important.
If you are experimenting with yoga mats you will realize that the thickness of a yoga mat is heavily dependent on the surface you are choosing to practice your yoga like a wooden floor would require a different kind of thickness than your carpeted room or the soft ground of your local park which has a grass cover.So, it is always better to keep two types of mats handy. The one with less thickness must be used when you are travelling or practicing on the carpeted floor. On the other hand, the thick one is for you to use on relatively harder ground. Nonetheless, experimenting and trying out various yoga mats will help you find your best suitable mat- suiting your style, preference and requirements.
#4 Practice Preference And Thickness
The style of yoga you perform also has a big role to play when you are out searching for a yoga mat. For example, if you practice Restorative Yoga classes, you will need a thicker mat for passive poses. Using thick mats will help you seat more comfortably.
You can even continue with the reclined postures for a long time without feeling uncomfortable. If you follow the Bikram or Anusara style of yoga- which are more rigorous and involve flowing yoga poses- you will always need a thinner yoga mat.
This helps to maintain stability and balance by keeping your feet grounded to the floor. Also, wider mats are required in these types of yoga as you move more quickly in these yoga sequences.
Also read our popular post on How To Store Yoga Mats.
Our team of yoga experts are of the view that thick yoga mats do not always serve well. Especially when it comes to performing various postures of various yoga styles. This is because thick mats make it quite difficult to move your body in certain ways while practising.
For example, the Tree Pose needs a firmer grip on the floor, which won’t be served well if you use a thick Yoga Mat. The standard thickness of a yoga mat is about 1/8 of an inch (3.17mm). Most yoga professionals like ours or teachers recommend the thickness of a yoga mat not to be thicker than 1/4th of an inch.
So, to answer your question, 'what size yoga mat do I need’ definitely lies within your own self determined by your comfort, passion and style of the practice. Here are the most important points one should keep in mind before buying a certain yoga mat of preferred size.
Things To Remember
Your height should always determine the length of the yoga mat you should go for. If your height is more than 5.8 ft you should go for the longer yoga mats. Else you might be left to fit in the standard sized yoga mats.
Perform the three poses on the mat before buying. If you feel comfortable, then go for it, or else don’t. In case you are buying online, you can always return it if you are not very happy with the length. See, whether your limbs are hanging out the edges of the mat, then don't buy it!
The location of your practice also decides the size of the yoga mat you should buy. The surface of the ground (hard or soft) will tell you which mat thickness should you go for.
If you are looking to buy a yoga mat for travel, then it should be lightweight for you to carry conveniently.
If you are suffering from pain, injuries or surgical interventions you should always go for a thicker yoga mat. This will help retain a longer momentum of certain balancing yoga postures.
If you are not being able to stretch properly in your yoga class without coming in any kind of physical contact with your neighbour, then you should always opt for a wider yoga mat.
Thick yoga mats do not always provide good grip in certain postures. So the recommended thickness should be at least 1/8th of an inch or even 1/4th of an inch.
Ask yourself what kind of yoga mat you need. That again depends on the yoga style you perform and sometimes the limitations you face.
Lastly, always go for a non-plastic eco-friendly, yoga mat to prevent any kind of health issues. Dispose of adequately to take care of mother earth.
Also, read our post on Best Yoga Mats For Beginners