Last year before I travelled to America, I had contemplated buying a travel mat, but decided that my normal mat I use to practice on, Yoga Mad Warrior Mat of medium thickness 4 mm and 1.1 kg, would be perfectly fine, thinking my suitcase was roomy enough, and all I had to do was fold it up. And of course it was fine to practice on, but it didn’t really fit into my suitcase nicely, as it needed to be folded which it took up a lot of space.
So I knew I had to start my search for a travel mat that is:
☮ Easy to fit into my suitcase without taking up too much space
☮ Sticky to support my body in different asanas
☮ One that has some decent thickness to it for comfort during practice
I took to the internet and looked into the Gaiam Travel Mat, Yogamatter’s own travel mat, Sweaty Betty Yoga Retreat Travel Mat and finally Manduka Travel Mat, taking into account the cost, thickness of the matt, stickiness and durability.
Lots of reviews were raving about the Manduka Travel Mat, but I was unsure of the thickness being a mere 1.5 mm would be too thin. I believe this is one of the thinnest travel mats out there. I also wanted comfort and support for my knees and ankles. However, I put my trust in the reviews and went for it!
This travel mat being priced mid-range at £35, is super light just under 1 kg, it’s thin 1.5 mm so folds very easily like a towel into my suitcase, gym bag and even my handbag! It has great grip, however on those cool nights when the air is condensing, I found that it did get slippery. Also, you do need an even solid ground on which to practice. I have tried using this on grass, the problem is that it doesn’t conform well on uneven surface and the mat starts to fold in places making it tricky moving from poses, especially in vinyasa style yoga. Additionally, I live in the UK along to southern coast, which means it is always going to be breezy and sometimes a little more than breezy, despite it being a perfectly sunny day. As this mat is very light and thin, it does blow away whilst I am in my poses, meaning I have to keep peeling the mat back. As it is quite thin, I used my hot yoga towel, which although is also thin, it gave a little added comfort whilst still conforming to the ground.
As this is my first travel mat, I would to try others out there to give a good comparison of this and what else is on the market. I would like to try out a travel mat that is a little thicker, mostly so it doesn’t blow away, as I find that I am using the current travel mat outside at the park or at the gym. I have my eye on this Khataland Yofo Mat
But, if you are looking for a mat that you can easily roll up or fold to fit into your travel bag, which is light, not too pricey and has good grip, then look no further. This really is the mat for you, just make sure you don’t travel anywhere too windy! So, great for travelling light abroad in hopefully a nice sunny destination with very little wind.
☮This was the best review I read about the Manduka Travel Mat which also gave a breakdown of further reviews on travel mats out there.