How Thick Should A Yoga Mat Be: Knowing the Right Thickness for Your Yoga Practice

How Thick Should A Yoga Mat Be: Knowing the Right Thickness for Your Yoga Practice

The practice of yoga has been around for thousands of years. It is among the most ancient forms of exercise and is enjoyed by people from all walks of life. Along with its increasing popularity came yoga mats, outfits, towels, and other yoga tools. For those who wonder how thick should a yoga mat be, read through this article to find out.

Similar to most form of exercise, yoga requires the need for certain tools and equipment in order to perform the routine safely and properly.

First, you have to invest in clothing that would allow you to move freely because yoga routines involve a lot of stretching. Wearing loose fitting clothes might result in the accidental exposure of too much skin.

The next thing yoga practitioners invest in after buying the right clothing is the yoga mat. Below, you will find everything you need to know about yoga mats and how to choose the right yoga mat for the type of practice you intend on doing.

What is a Yoga Mat?

A yoga mat is a specially designed mat manufactured to aid in the practice of yoga. It is a sticky, non-skid, non-slip mat that is used to keep the hands and feet from slipping and therefore prevent yoga-related injuries.

Decades ago, yogis used to practice their routines outdoors. They enjoy the connection to the earth they feel whenever they press their hands and feet on the warm earth.

However, this is not possible during the winter months, forcing them to do their practice indoors. The problem with that setup, though, was flooring can be quite slippery, too hard, and cold.

The need to be able to practice yoga indoors in comfort gave rise to the invention of yoga mats. Back then, people were just using old cut-out pieces of carpet-underlays but later discovered that those made of a PVC material are stickier, safer, and more effective. Today, yoga mats come in various sizes, materials, and thickness levels.

Factors to Consider When Buying a Yoga Mat

When trying to buy a product that you know you will use almost every single day, you must take the time to check it out thoroughly. Look for something that is the perfect fit, and make sure that you are getting the most out of your money.

With yoga mats, there are four factors that you need to consider in order to choose the one that matches your specific needs and preferences.

  • Size

Yoga is a practice that is embraced by individuals from all walks of life. Men, women, and children from all over the world enjoy this discipline and do it as a form of exercise. That being said, it is understandable that there are varying sizes of yoga mats that are available on the market today.

The standard size for a yoga mat has a length of 172 centimeters or around 68 inches. If you are a beginner, it is advisable to invest in a yoga mat that is in the accustomed length. However, if you know you are shorter or taller than the average individual, then you can go ahead and buy a yoga mat that is the right length for you.

To know if a yoga mat is the perfect length for you, test it by doing a Downward-Facing Dog position. In such pose, both hands and feet should be rested firmly on the mat. You can also lie down and check if your head is positioned safely on the mat and not on the bare floor. Longer yoga mats measure up to 85 inches.

On the hand, it is also wise to check the width. Yoga mats today measure about 23 inches to 36 inches wide. You can estimate the right yoga mat size for you based on your height and shoulder or hip width.

  • Material

A lot of other factors are based on the material that the yoga mat is made of, so you should pay extra attention to it. If you have an allergy to latex, you should stay clear of yoga mats that are made of PVC or natural rubber.

Other types of yoga mats are made of natural cotton, jute fibers, and recycled organic materials. You can rely on a PVC yoga mat to last years of wear and tear, where some lasting over a decade. They also provide the best grip and are the easiest to wipe clean with just a damp cloth.

  • Weight

If you intend to bring your yoga mat along with you on studios, parks, or while traveling, you should consider investing in a more lightweight option. Most manufacturers also include durable yoga mat slings, harnesses, and backpacks for added portability.

  • Thickness

Depending on your preferences, there is a wide range of yoga mat thickness that you can choose from. The standard yoga mat thickness is about 1/8-inch thick. However, there are variations that have a measurement of as thin as 1/16-inch and as plush as ¼-inch.

How Thick Should a Yoga Mat Be?

If you have ever asked yourself: how thick should a yoga mat be, do not fret because most of us have wondered the same thing. The standard 1/8-inch thick yoga mat is perfect for most types of yoga practice, including Hatha and Vinyasa style. It provides the right amount of cushioning while also still being portable and easy to store.

If you prefer practicing yoga on-the-go and you want to bring your own yoga mat with you, then you should invest in a mat that is 1/16-inch in thickness. This will also give you a stronger connection to the floor, which is perfect for poses that include a lot of standing and balancing. A slightly thicker mat is recommended for those who need or prefer more support to their sensitive areas.


A yoga mat is more than just an area where you practice your yoga routines. Some consider it as their peaceful place where our minds can be free from the stress of our daily lives. This is the reason why we should take the extra time in choosing the right yoga mat for our practice.

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