Yoga might not be able to fix all of life’s problems, but it comes pretty darn close. Feeling stressed? Can’t sleep? Sore? Yoga time. Need an escape from screaming kids? A single yoga class will return you to the chill parent goddess you truly are inside (we’re projecting, but we’re hopeful). Give the kiddos something educational to work on and you won’t even feel that bad about sneaking away and closing the door. If you’re brave, get the kids involved. It has been known to make them sleepy— not a bad side effect.
Unfortunately, it can be hard to get your Zen on regularly. Luckily, aside from in-person studios, there are a million apps and online yoga videos available —and even better, many of them are completely free.
All that’s standing between you and a more relaxed state is a good-quality yoga mat so you can practice anywhere. (And maybe your stretchiest joggers which you’ve likely been wearing since last week.) A good yoga towel is another must-have, especially for hot classes indoors. If you haven’t tried one, it’s a thin towel coated with rubber on the bottom. You can put it in the washing machine and fold it back into the linen closet while not in use. Best of all, it’s easy to carry and super easy to clean.
Not sure which you need? Take a look at our favorites and see what suits you best. Now close the door, light a good-smelling candle and breathe deep, mamas.
Free at-home yoga workouts on Youtube are the best and truly make yoga available to all without the fancy $30-a-class price tag. (Thanks, Yoga with Adrienne and others!) The same goes for an at-home yoga mat. You don’t have to spend a lot to get a lot back out of your yoga practice, as this well-cushioned mat can attest to. At only $35, there’s still a lot to love, including extra thick material to cushion your knees or legs in any pose, plus a non-slip material and fun colors and patterns to keep you entertained when class drags on. It might be budget-friendly, but it has over 4,000 positive reviews to back it up.
One Reviewer Wrote: “Love the colors. 6mm is good cushioning for aching joints. The grip is great - had no trouble switching between poses. Also, the grip accentuates a pose like the downward-facing dog! All in all a great buy.”
This crowd favorite mat has a 4.7 out of five-star rating on Amazon, so you know it’s got to be good. It’s generously padded for sore knees (or if you just like a little extra cushion as you savasana.) It’s also versatile if you do other at-home workouts like Pilates in addition to yoga. Yes, it is more expensive than other mats, but might be a good investment if you really want to up your at-home practice until you get back to the studio. Speaking of investment, like a new pair of your favorite shoes, it needs to be broken in or might be slippery to use. To do so, you’ll have to use it a lot before it becomes your favorite mat.
One Reviewer Wrote: “I've practiced yoga for a good 15 years and gone through many mats. This Manduka mat is by far the best one I've ever owned —and I expect it may be the LAST one I ever own, it is so substantial. Just the right stickiness and thickness, it is super high quality (HEAVY, for a yoga mat), it protects my knees and helps me hold poses.”
Practicing at home has plenty of benefits, mainly that you can start your day with yoga in your pajamas! There’s just one little thing missing that your online instructors can’t provide—hands-on adjustments. If you find yourself struggling to figure out which foot or hand goes where on the mat and miss the instructor guiding you into place, this mat is for you. And even if you’re not a beginner, it can still help you have more precision in your movements and keep you from getting injured. The mat contains several alignment lines so you can keep your hands and feet evenly aligned and know where to put your back heel in standing postures. Plus there’s a lotus directly in the center where you can always go back to when you need to find your grounding again. It’s a bit more on the pricey side, but Amazon users swear by it.
One Reviewer Wrote: “This mat is perfect for me and my practice — whether I’m teaching or taking [a] class. It’s grippy (even during those hot sweaty classes), of great length and the alignment guides keep me mindful of my feet placement. Highly recommend.”
This budget-buy yoga towel will make you want to take on any sweaty Vinyasa style or Bikram class that comes your way. But keep in mind; a yoga towel isn’t just handy for yoga, no, no, no. You can use it for multiple purposes, too, like lying out at the pool or beach, covering up a bench at the gym, or even as a blanket when you travel. Just make sure you wash it often. (It’s uber absorbent, so it will quickly air dry.)
One Reviewer Wrote: “Loved this product. [A] quality towel that fits right onto your mat. [I’m] always sliding around on my mat for hot yoga and this really helped my grip. Highly recommend.”
Any 2-in-1 product is a good idea for moms, it means one less thing to forget, right? Well, we are happy to report that this genius mat from Yoga Zeal functions as a two-in-one mat AND towel combined, so you’ll never have to worry about losing your yoga towel again. The faux suede towel layer is already woven in the mat itself, so just spray it down with a little warm water before class and you’ll be good to go. Plus, if you prefer a bit of color in your practice, the mat designs like sunrise moon and ocean waves are gorgeous. This mat got tons of positive feedback from yogis on Amazon.
One Reviewer Wrote: “This mat is gorgeous, it has a microfiber vegan suede top bonded to natural tree rubber. The construction and quality [are] very similar, if not identical to the Mika Yoga and Yoga Design Lab mats. I have a Jade Yoga mat also which is excellent but I really gravitate towards these comfortable microfiber suede top mats. They're recommended for hot yoga and grip better with sweat. However, I actually really enjoy using this mat for my nighttime restorative practice as well.”
Don’t sleep on this mat from Heathyoga — even though, taking that literally, you could if you want to. This mat has enough cushion to be comfortable for poses you’ll start on your back. It also has alignment lines, making it great for both beginners and professionals. But, one of the key standouts of the Heathyoga mat is the fact that it’s made from eco-friendly materials. So, it’s a mat you can feel good about, even outside the studio.
One Reviewer Wrote: “Bought this because I’ve just gotten into yoga but didn’t want to spend too much money right off the bat. Very stable, doesn’t slip at all for me. Easy to clean. The length is perfect for me at 6 feet tall. I keep getting surprised every time I move and I’m still on the mat. All in all a great mat for tall people and those just starting off”
Wipe off your mat with this fan-favorite towel from Youphoria. Not only is it available in countless color combinations, but it’s nonskid and nonslip, helping pad your mat during a hot class. One of the keys to its popularity is the fact that it has microfibers that cling to your mat once you start to sweat. It’s also easy to travel with.
One Reviewer Wrote: “I did Bikram for almost a year, and this towel was a lifesaver. I was using a beach towel for a couple of weeks, and I sweat like a pig, so I was slipping and sliding all over the place. Once I got this towel most of my issues were resolved, there was no longer a puddle around me slowly lurking towards my neighbor, and I could comfortably make it through the class.”
Best Yoga Mat For Kids
We could all truly use some Zen. You might not know it, but there are plenty of kids yoga programs to let them butterfly pose and downward dog to their heart's content. For some extra incentive, get them their own little mats (adorable!) so you can all practice together. These mats aren’t too expensive and come in fun patterns to get any kid excited (prickly pears, unicorns, and seahorses among them). The size is perfect for little bodies on the move. It’s also got over 7,000 five-star reviews, and an overall score of 4.8 on Amazon, which is quite impressive.
One Reviewer Wrote: “Bought this for my 3-year-old who has recently become some type of gymnast. He has randomly started to do flips all over the place, which doesn’t work well with hardwood floors. I hopped on Amazon so fast and after looking at reviews decided to go with this exercise mat for him, plus it has dinosaurs on it, and don’t all 3-year-olds love dinosaurs? He uses this all the time now, and I no longer have to be worried about him hurting himself while doing flips. He gets his dino mat out all the time. “
Need some more ways to take a breather? Check out more of our favorite wellness guides.
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