Would you consider wearing someone else’s dirty socks? Probably not. Then why would you stand, sit, or lie down on a communal mat at your local gym, or Yoga studio?
- Mats collect sweat, dirt and dust. In a very busy studio, or health club, it’s not likely that Yoga mats are cleaned on a regular basis.
- The surface of a borrowed, or rental, is “one size fits all”. You might slide all over the mat because the texture isn’t sticky enough, or maybe it’s not long enough for your height. You may need a thicker mat, if your back or knees feel uncomfortable.
- You can get warts from a communal mat.
- You can get athletes foot from a communal mat.
- A mat, block, belt or foam wedges are personal pieces of equipment, bearing your own energy. Yes, inanimate objects collect the energy of their owner. Some people carry energy that isn’t healthy.
- All mats are not created equal. When you purchase your own mat, you can select the size, texture, color and thickness, that’s just right for you.
- Using your own mat enhances your practise because you’ve selected the right texture, thickness and size.
- Using a communal mat is like wearing a pair of communal socks or shoes. If you’re repulsed by the thought of wearing communal dirty, then you should feel the same way about communal Yoga mats.
- Cleaning your own mat is easier than you think. You can put it in a washing machine in cold water for a very thorough cleaning. You can also buy a mat cleaner for a quick clean up right after class.
- Some mats are chemically treated to prevent the growth of bacteria and viruses. If you’re chemically sensitive and are using a communal mat, you won’t know the difference.
Communal Yoga Mats: Beware of Germs, New York Times, July 27, 2006
Foot Fungus Alert: Yoga Journal
Quick Tip: How To Clean A Yoga Mat: Blue Moon Personal Training
Copyright 2013 Irene Pastore, and Blue Moon Personal Training