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So you bought a new yoga mat! Congratulations. I know it’s not that big of a deal, but it’s kind of exciting knowing that this mat is where you’re be practicing yoga for the next several years. At this point, most students wonder about how to care for their new yoga mat.
At Mountain Harmony Yoga Studio I love watching students pick their new yoga mat. It always fits their personality so perfectly! There are so many colors and designs. I’ve even had several students purchase several mats, to fit their mood changes!
A Personal Relationship…
Over the years, I’ve had several mats…even wearing a hole in my first yoga mat after several years of intense practice. Finding a good way to reuse or recycle an old mat, is a great discussion, that might turn into a blog post at a later time. 🙂
Right now I have two mats. A 6mm studio mat, that I keep at the studio, and a home mat that is thinner, that I use for traveling and for filming videos.
But this ain’t about me…this about you and your new purchase.
Your New Yoga Mat
Have you unwrapped it yet? What have you noticed? The new mat smell?
Have you practiced on it yet? How did it go? Did your hands slip forward and you felt like you were going to crack your noggen on the studio floor?
1.I’ve never seen anyone slip and fall…and I’ve seen a lot of people practicing on new mats.
2.But it’s still a little disconcerting right? Well, I can help.
First I want to say that what I’m about to tell you is in regard to Gaiam yoga mats. I love Gaiam, I’ve used Gaiam mats my whole life… it’s what I know. I can not suggest this technique for any other mats.
New Yoga Mat Care
Here’s what you do to get rid of the new-mat slippery feeling.
Put your new yoga mat in the washing machine, add 3/4 cup of vinegar (white or ACV is fine) and wash. When it’s done running its cycle, hang to dry. That’s it!
Sounds a little nuts right? But it works! I still find that the first practice or two after washing, it may still be a little slippy, but just put a towel down under your hands for 1-2 practices and you should be good! It’s better than several weeks of the “I’m going to get a concussion in down dog because I’m going to fall” feeling.
Now, I’m pretty sure Gaiam will tell this is not suggested, I didn’t ask…but I’ve done it a lot and my mats have ALL lasted 7+ years. One of my first yoga teachers, Bobby Misiti, in New Cumberland PA told me to do this, and it’s how I un-sliperized all of my current studio mats.
If you’re nervous about putting something so heavy in your washer, I get it. But I’ve had 5 -7 mats at a time in my washer without a problem. I’ve never put mats in the dryer…so you might want to be careful…just saying.
I’m so excited about your new purchase! Whether you’re new to yoga, or this is your 10th mat…you’ll find that each yoga mat has a distinct feeling/energy that will support you in your practice. Take a picture of you on your new mat and post below, or in our facebook group!