Melanie Sykes - Yoga Design Lab

Best Yoga Mats for 2017

A good yoga mat is the core of any number of home or studio workouts, and although the technology might seem simple, this is an object you are going to spend a lot of time in close contact with, so you might as well love it, not just for its looks but also, of course, its functionality, durability and comfort.

The yoga mat industry seems to know no limits and there are hundreds to choose from, but we’ve picked out our top five to get you started.

Manduka ProLite Mat

The Manduka ProLite yoga mat is legendary in yoga and fitness circles. It’s not cheap, but it is long-lasting, thick and dense, providing great comfort and support for your practice or workout. It is lighter and more portable than the classic Manduka Pro, although if you don’t have to carry your mat around with you for classes, you could spend the extra and invest in the Pro.

£60 from YogaMatters

Sweaty Betty Eco Yoga Mat

A comfortable and soft mat, with great support, the Sweaty Betty Eco Yoga Mat is double sided, features a grippy wave pattern and unlike most mats, is made from 100% biodegradable TPE instead of PVC.

Suited for both normal and hot yoga (different shaped grips on either side of the mat), it’s 6mm thick and light as as a feather.

£40 from Sweaty Betty 

Melanie Sykes Yoga Design Lab Mat

Yoga Design Lab Commuter Mat

A bit less mainstream than the first two, this superlight and versatile mat is designed with hot yoga particularly in mind. It combines a super-thin yoga mat and yoga towel in one, so that you have less to cart around with you if you are out and about all day, and what really sets these mats apart are the stunning patterns. Yoga mats tend to be very plain, but these ones really stand out with their bold patterns and bright colours.

Made from suede-like microfibre bonded to a natural tree rubber base, this mat provides excellent grip and absorption during a sweaty yoga class – and, as you might hope – goes safely in the washing machine.

£52 from Yoga Design Lab

Melanie Sykes Liforme Yoga Mat

Liforme Yoga Mat

The most expensive mat in this list, we think the Liforme Yoga mat is worth every penny. Perfect for home practice, it is wider and longer than most mats, but most importantly has a unique asana alignment guide etched (not printed) into the surface to give you a little more direction when you are practicing alone.

Environmentally friendly manufacture, absorbent AND fast-drying with a super-grippy texture, means that this ticks all the boxes. It’s a bit heavy though (and big), so I probably wouldn’t want to be carrying it around with me.

£100 from YogaMatters

RatPad Eco-Foam Yoga Knee Pad

Not a mat at all, but an incredibly useful, thick and squishy knee pad for those of us who struggle with workouts that put pressure on the knees.

A lot of workouts and reps can be tough on the knees at any age, and dance pads are a nuisance to switch over from one knee to the other (and just as much of a nuisance to keep on) but this grippy, small pad has solved all of these problems.

£13.99 on Amazon