- Jade Yoga’s Harmony Mat ($67.96-$84.95) is meant to provide traction and cushion while providing stability for standing poses.
- I have been a sweaty person my entire life, but in adulthood, my main problem is slipping on my yoga mat.
- I have been using the Harmony Mat for more than a year after trying dozens of others. While no mat is perfect, this one comes pretty close if you’re a sweaty yogi like me.
- $85 may seem like a lot for a piece of rubber you put on the floor, but for me, it is definitely worth it.
When I was a teenager, I used to leave sweaty hand prints on my school work. It wasn’t because I was stressed about a test, that’s just me – I sweat. And it’s embarrassing.At age 30, my husband has affectionately nicknamed me “Sweaty Betty” (my name is not Betty) and my main worry regarding my inability to stop perspiring is slipping on my yoga mat.
When I began my yoga practice several years ago, I had a $5 mat from my local grocery store. Within a matter of minutes in my first class I transitioned from downward gog to laying-flat-on-my-face dog, which, according to the instructor, is not a yoga pose. I had slipped due to sweaty hands before the class barely got started.
I falsely assumed that as I built up my yoga stamina, I’d stop sweating so much. Wrong – several years later, my yoga mat still looked like I someone ran 10 miles on it even after a fairly mellow practice. So, when one of my friends decided to become a yoga teacher, part of her mission was to find a mat I could use without injuring myself.
- Jade Yoga
After a mat made for hot yoga still made me slide, we went to a “yoga mat class” together. Saying I was skeptical to find a mat is an understatement, but I was up for trying the dozen or so mats laid out on the studio floor. Some I didn’t even bother with after just touching the surface and knowing it would end in tragedy; others I used but with a towel, and then I landed on Jade Yoga’s Harmony mat.
According to Jade Yoga’s website, the mat “provides great traction and cushion while still providing stability for standing poses.” Traction is definitely what I need and because you can describe my body as “bony”, a cushioned mat is also a necessity.
The mat retails for $67.96 – $84.95 depending on if you get a 68-inch, 71-inch, or 74-inch mat. It is 3/16-inches thick, 24-inches wide, and weighs about five pounds. Not that it matters when it comes to how well the mat performs, but it also comes in more than a dozen colors depending on which size you get. It is made with natural rubber tapped from rubber trees, a renewable source, and contains no PVC, EVA, or other synthetic rubber. Made in the United States, Jade also plants a tree for every mat sold and donates $5 to charity with the purchase of certain mat colors.
My experience with the Jade Yoga Harmony Mat
After miraculously not slipping on the mat for the few minutes I was on it at the studio, my friend bought me the 68-inch mat as a gift for helping with her wedding. I have now been using the mat for more than a year and can attest that my yoga practice has never been better.
First off, the mat did not have an odor like some mats do when you first buy them and is the stickiest I’ve found. The surface is not smooth or shiny like some mats, but actually feels like it has tiny dots that help aid in the traction. These “dots” are not uncomfortable, by the way. Both my hands and feet grip right away and the 5-pound weight of the mat also helps keep it in place. While I joke about sliding and falling on my mat, it’s actually not a laughing matter and can be incredibly dangerous. Aside from smashing your face on the ground, you can easily pull or tear muscles if you stretch too far from an inability to grip.
- Kaitlin Gates/Business Insider
As for the cushioning, my spine and knees used to be covered in bruises and I am happy to report they no longer are. It is thick enough to not cause injury, but not so thick that it’s too soft and therefore difficult to move. When I am taking a yin class and holding the poses for five minutes or more, I do find myself reaching for my yoga knee cushion, but needing it is rare.
Keep in mind that no mat is perfect; if you are taking a 60-minute hot vinyasa class, you’re probably still going to slip a bit. This is solved by throwing down a yoga towel – my favorite is Gaiam’s Stay-Put Yoga Towel. The photo above is how my mat looked when removing my hands near the end of pretty intense practice. While I was still not slipping, I decided to put my towel down anyway because it was inevitable that it would happen soon.
Because the mat is pretty sticky, another word of warning – more than your hands stick to it. If you have a home yoga practice and your pets like to join you, it’s unfortunately probably best to not let them on it, as I have learned the hard way that it basically attracts fur. Because of this, you need to make sure you’re cleaning it often. I use Austra cleaner and it seems to work quite well. It has not taken any of the traction off the mat, but if you are really scrubbing, some of the color does come off.
It’s also important to note that my mat is on a hardwood floor, so I cannot attest to what it is like on a carpet. The cushion would be better, of course, but the odds of sliding might be higher, so keep that in mind when deciding where to practice.
All in all, one year later, the Harmony Mat is still just as sticky and with the addition of a towel for super sweaty practices, it is a worthy investment if you’re serious about yoga (and not falling on your face).