I was considering purchasing a Mysore style mat, which is a cotton rug that you can use on top of or in place of your regular mat. You can find Mysore mats here if you are interested in checking them out!
A few weeks ago, I recalled some ads I had seen for Yoga Paws while I was on the search for yoga gloves to assist me with my hyperhydrosis problem. Yoga Paws are not just your run of the mill sticky socks and gloves... they are mats attached to socks and gloves that you can use in place of your mat. These are made from natural rubber, which means they provide excellent grip.
I thought they would be perfect for travel, so I ordered myself a pair of Elite Yoga Paws, which is the slightly more expensive model. It's US$39.95, plus about US$10 for postage and handling. While you can find these retailing at some Australian websites, they are selling them at Aussie prices of over $60, so it's worth getting it direct from Yoga Paws.
|You can check these out here|
Image from the Yoga Paws website
These were despatched the day after I placed the order, and I received them in less than a week!
Today, I decided to road-test these babies. They were a little snug on my feet, but apparently that's how they are meant to be. It's a little annoying that you choose one standard size for both your hands and your feet (so it's unfortunate if you have massive feet and little hands). They smell a little, as do most natural rubber products until they've been given a little bit of a wash.
I practiced my regular vinyasa routine today for an hour. These performed beautifully. I was slightly skeptical that the foot grip was only on the front half of the foot, leaving your heels bare, but it provided excellent grip without compromising your feet grounding. You could still easily ground through your heels and not slip, despite not having any mat material there.
It felt a little unusual performing the chaturanga-upward dog toe flips with these on my feet but I adjusted to them by the end of the practice, and they didn't faze me by the end.
The only major downside is that there is no padding support for your knees if you have bad knees, as I currently do from my running injury. So, any kneeling poses could hurt. But that would have been an issue as well if I had purchased a Mysore mat, so I'm not complaining at all!
Here's a little summary of the pros and cons:
- easy to clean (just handwash in cold water and gentle soap)
- works as well as they say - as grippy as a good yoga mat
- no padding for other parts of your body (eg. knees for kneeling poses)
- you will need a clean floor, so may not be suitable for most public places
If you travel a lot and you do not want to be away from your practice, think about investing in a pair of these. They take up less space than a yoga mat, and work just as well. I won't be using these to replace my Jade yoga mat in my regular practice at home though, except on days when I'm too lazy to roll it out.
Please note that this post is an independent review, and has not been sponsored.