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Hello, My fellow Yogis ॐ ! Fantastic news. I have found 5 Eco-Friendly sustainable or biodegradable yoga mats to help you center your prana!
There are so many ways to center yourself and live in harmony with Mother Earth. Why not bring your yoga practice to the next level by raising the quality of your mat?
I am sure you already know how harmful plastic and PVC products are for this plant. If not, please read up on the Pacific Garbage Patch to get up to speed. Yes, there are more than 5 trillion pieces of plastic floating around in the Pacific that basically makes up its own island.
So, if you are on board with reducing the amount of plastic you use, then this post is written just for you!
So many of the products that we buy and use throughout our lives end up landfills or worse yet in the ocean. It is critically important that we consciously think about the products we purchase. Eco Economics is all about promoting sustainable conscious consumerism. The goal is to incentivize businesses to expand their Eco-Friendly product lines. We want to reward those companies that provide plastic-free and earth conscious products.
Plastic and other unrecyclable or uncompostable products have lifespans that far exceed our own lives. This means that the single-use solo cup, which we used for that one game of beer pong, will be around when our grandchildren inhabit the earth!! That is so crazy to think about, right?!?
The True Meaning of ॐ Yoga ॐ Practice:
As you perform your sun salutation, realize that you are praying to the sun. When you let out an audible Om, know that you are making the origination vibration of the universe and of Mother Earth.
Throughout history, the concept of primordial energy has had many names. In India and Sanskrit, it is known as “Prana“. In the Chinese culture, it is called Chi, and in Ancient Egypt, it is called Ka.
If I may be so brave, I would like to link our current society’s intellectual era of science. Today, scientists believe that the lowest level common denominator in quantum physics is “String Theory”.
Without getting into it, the basic principle of string theory is that every subatomic particle is made up of vibrating strings of energy. While I am not a theoretical physicist, I do enjoy reading the works of Steven Hawking and Michio Kaku (who are, in fact, physicists).
What I am trying to say is that there must be some validity to the idea that Mother Earth does have a vibration, and her spirit must exist.
The ancient indigenous people of the Andes (most notably the Incas), called this spirit “Pachamama“.
Yoga is about self-realization and connection. Connection to yourself and the Earth.
As you practice yoga, the intention is to focus on the integrity of the mind, body, and soul. You are a part of Mother Earth, and thus integrity must also be with her as well.
Somehow, during the industrial age, we forgot about the ancestral teachings and began to take more than we gave to our Mother Earth. We have lived in this way for over 100 years, and we are truly starting to see the effects of our actions.
The good news is that we are beginning to realize the errors of our ways.
It is up to you to make a change!
The Truth About Plastic Yoga Mats:
Today, many yoga mats are made of PVC or polyvinyl type materials that fall apart easily.
Thankfully, an increasing number of companies are producing sustainable, plastic and chemical-free yoga mats. Most of these yoga mats are made from all-natural rubber, so you don’t have to sacrifice grip quality for a sustainable mat.
If going sustainable is not enough of a reason to transition to a “green” mat, think about this…
The use of lead in plastics has not been banned. Lead softens the plastic and makes it more flexible so that it can go back to its original shape.
Unfortunately, yoga mats usually fall into the category of plastic, unrecyclable, and uncompostable products.
Now think about this… When you sweat, your pores open up… and you are now laying on a plastic mat that could have been made with lead…
Without further ado, here are 5 Eco-Friendly yoga mats that can help you and our planet live in greater harmony!
5 Eco-Friendly Yoga Mats:
If you subscribe to the Vegan lifestyle, this Ajana Jute Yoga Mat is for you! Naturally, this mat is eco-friendly, recyclable, vegan, and made from organic jute fiber.
Jute fiber is 100% biodegradable and recyclable. The Jute stem has a high volume of cellulose and can be harvested within 4-6 months (which is extremely quick!).
In comparison, the only useful part of a cotton plant is the flowering portion. Whereas the majority of the jute plant is usable material.
Comparatively, trees take many years to grow and hence jute can save the forest! Due to how fast it can grow, jute can meet the cellulose and wood demand of the world. The wonderful thing about jute is that it is one of nature’s most sustainable forms of fiber.
Additionally, this mat is free from harmful toxic chemicals (including BPA, PVC, and heavy metals).
Furthermore, Ajana is a CSR company! The best part is that for every mat that is purchased, Ajana donates $1 to One Tree Planted.
If you are a Vegan, check out the Ajana Jute Yoga Mat that was created with you in mind!
The Mindful Mat is made of a 100% biodegradable and recyclable plastic!! Don’t worry, you read right. That is because it is made with TPE (Thermoplastic elastomers)
I love thick yoga mats, and The Mindful Mat is 6 mm (approx. 1/4 inch) in thickness, which is one of the more plush options of this list.
This mat uses a closed cell technology that is eco-friendly. Moreover, it is PVC, latex, and lead-free.
Additionally, this mat boasts a double layer design with a super grip bottom texture for an anti-slip experience.
Of course, this super sustainable mat comes with a lightweight durable carrying strap for easy transportation and storage.
The Yoloha Cork Yoga Mat is super lightweight and portable (weighing in at just 2.5 lbs).
This mat offers antimicrobial properties and is made of a highly sustainable material.
Moreover, the manufacturer stands by the quality of its products and offers a full refund or exchange within 30 days. No questions asked!
One thing to keep in mind is that due to the nature of how porous cork is, this yoga mat is probably not the one to go with if you are really into hot yoga.
On the other hand, the best thing about using cork is that you don’t have to cut the tree down or kill it to harvest its bounty!!!
You can strip the outer rings of the tree, and harvest it again in 9 years!!!
Get this, the average cork tree can produce around 100 pounds of cork per stripping!! Ill open a bottle of wine to that :).
4. Athoon Yoga Mat
The Athoon yoga mat is one of the more cost effective mats on this list. The Athoon mat is also made of TPE, which is a mix of rubber and plastic. As described above,TPE can be recycled and reused.
If your goal is to make the switch to a non-plastic mat, then the other mats on this list are going to be a better fit.
If your budget is a bit tight, then this could be a great happy medium!
That being said, it is, of course, biodegradable and non-toxic.
Truthfully, I have not personally used this mat, but from the reviews, it seems to be a “great bang for your buck” deal.
Furthermore, this mat comes with a yoga strap, carrying bag, and a carry strap!
Another great feature is that the Athoon yoga mat is very thick at 6mm for that extra soft feel.
Interested in learning more about the Athoon Eco-friendly yoga mat? Click here!
The Manduka EKO Lite Yoga Pilates Mat is Latex-free and made of Non-Amazon (sustainably harvested) rubber. Moreover, this zero waste yoga mat is made from biodegradable materials.
The Manduka Mat does not contain PVC or toxic plasticizers and is safe for latex sensitivities people.
A Tri-Layer Technology is used for an optimal combination of grip, durability, and slip-resistance.
Additionally, instead of using a synthetic polyester for reinforcement, the manufacturers use a blend of polyester and natural cotton.
My boyfriend has this mat, and he absolutely loves it (because of how grippy it is)! Yes, it is a bit on the pricey side, but it is 100% worth it!
For more information on the Manduka EKO Lite Yoga Pilates Mat click here!
***Quick note: There is a 1.5mm version that is cheaper, but you do get what you pay for. I really like my yoga mats to have that soft padded feeling, otherwise, you might as well practice on the hard floor. Trust me, sit-ups done straight on the floor suck. But that is because I do more than just yoga on my mat.
The 10,000 Foot Overview:
Typically, when it comes to your yoga practice, you are rolling around on your mat for at least an hour. You want to make sure that you are practicing on a chemical free surface.
Remember your skin is porous, and you do not want to absorb plastic toxins while centering yourself during practice.
Again, most plastics are made with BPA and lead! Eeeek!!!
Invest in a high-quality yoga mat is both good for your health and the environment!
The biggest benefit that I have found with a high-quality mat is its grip factor. Making the switch to a high-performance mat completely changed my practice!
Remember, you get what you pay for. With the right care, these mats can last years.
A yoga mat isn’t an item that you buy on a regular basis, so get one that will accelerate your practice, is free of toxins, and is good for the planet!!!
If you enjoyed reading this article or would like me to write a comparison article about another kind of sustainable product out there. Let me know by commenting below!
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