Yoga Mat; My silent support partner.
First Mat was with me for way way too many years, by the time I had to let go of her we had been through a truck load of change with no idea of what was to come. We had moved interstate together and she proved her support and versatility as slept on her camping.
First Mat was purple cheap and bought on the fly. One of those standard not fancy, 5mm mats that also come in pink and blue you know the ones, every beginner yogi seems to acquire this kind of mat as they shyly dip their toes in the yoga river, taking week and month long hiatuses between practices.
First Mat soaked up buckets of sweat and teapots of tears as I down dogged and triangled through various styles of yoga. From weird stretching at the gym to a random Iyengar class, well before I was properly introduced to a yoga strap or understood the potential of props.
In Bikram class, First Mat became slippery sucker where I discovered I was lacking in inner thigh strength or more likely the physical knowledge of the neurological pathways to make this happen and keep me upright. This resulted in the copy cat move of me covering First Mat with a beach towel, eventually discovering microfibre sweat towels which was a far move convenient option.
First Mat was often so heavy with sweat I would have to wring her out at the studio in the shower, washing her when I got home, I never quite got rid of the ripe scent of a Bikrim studio. The rule about these studios being carpeted was probs not the greatest idea considering 42 degrees and 1 million percent humidity, I mean no one in India or Bali for that matter has carpet do they.....the odd rug, yes, but carpet no.
While still loving First Mat I, I was a traitor. Its true I cheated on First Mat a few times buying new mats, mats that never measured up. Perhaps I wasn't in the space to start a new mat relationship, never really gelling with them. There was the pretty mat, the lightweight mat, the cork mat, the reversible mat and a foldable, lumpy, annoying, why would you bother early addition travel mat. I honestly felt like I was cheating on First Mat, oh the shame, especially when I realised the relationships were usually costly and always fleeting.
Then one of my teachers paraded a sexy round microfibre yoga mat and I was in love.
A round yoga mat? This is genius I wouldn't be limited to any direction that I wanted to go, the earth was round so yoga mats should be too!!!
Not really practical in a studio, rows of students sense. I was always the odd one out taking up two spaces ruining the aesthetic and being "tsk tsked" by the yoga purists of the class. I learned my lesson, this was back when I thought I had to give a shit about what people thought of me and my yoga practice.
I kept that mat in my shala Port Shed Yoga, for my personal practice, only rolling it out when I was teaching, leading workshops and retreats in the round.
You can check out the Yogi Peace Club Mandala Mat Here
I had a cork yoga mat when I lived in Port Hedland it was hot humid and lasted about 10 practices before it peeled off and flaked away. So I wont share any links for that one. I am sure there are better cork mats but I am so far not a huge fan. I love love love a cork block though if you want to meet my faves check these babies out here Peace Yoga Cork Blocks
Then I discovered the "Eco Mat" Its a jute mat layered on top of recycled rubber, its 5mm of toe squidging savansana bliss! These mats used to be heavy but there is a much lighter more user friendly versions available now, its fantastic if you can leave it in a studio or at home in your own sacred practice space. Its ok on the front of the scooter but Charlie doesn't like sharing her spot! Its not to bad to wash just a little soaped up shampoo and a rinse off under the shower, drying it out takes a little longer so its usually a spray and wipe with a weekly wash schedule depending on how many buckets you do or don't sweat! Kakaos Jute Yoga Mat I have 6 of these I roll them out for private practices and workshops I keep them a spares and they are great for all kinds of practice.
Then I began a love affair with a Travel Mat. I have had several.
travel Mat can fit in my back pack and has been to many parts of the world, Travel Mat fits under my scooter seat here in Bali, washes well in the shower and dry quickly, he looks super pretty and is a grippy microfibre finish backed by rubber weighing less that 1kg and only 1mm thick. He is always complimented.
Travel Mat helps me create my sacred space in any studio as I roll him out over an already in position studio mat. I don't need need an annoying towel if I go to a sweaty class, If a class it short of mats I have trusty reliable Travel Mat.
From a hygiene factor I am on a win, especially during the last two years of learning to live with uncertainty.
Travel Mat and I have been through a lot together. When I roll him out I know that we are working together and that he will silent support my yoga journey where ever it may take me!
Its been a few years since I said goodbye to First Mat who had become "Just In Case Mat" hanging out rolled up and avoided in the corner of my lounge room. I am grateful for our time spent together and think of you often. Thank you for your silent support
much love kit