Has your yoga class ever been hampered by a sweaty, slick mat? Do you have a mat that keeps slipping around on the floor when doing poses like downward dog or standing on one leg in tree pose? If so, it’s time for you to learn how to make the yoga mat less slippery.
Yoga is a rewarding yet formidable practice. Just making it through one yoga session, let alone a full-fledged yoga practice, requires a great deal of strength, willpower, focus, and endurance.
One thing that hinders many new yogis is the slipperiness of their yoga mats, which makes it hard to do all your poses correctly. Not to mention that an overly-slippery mat also prevents you from sweating enough during some poses.
The first time I began practicing yoga, I struggled with the slippery yoga mats. They kept sliding out from beneath me. Eventually, I got used to it, but it’s come back to haunt me with the change of seasons. It made me realize that there must be a better way to deal with this pesky issue.
This guide will show you how to fix a slippery yoga mat so that you can practice yoga more safely and securely.
Why Is Your Yoga Mat Slippery?
There’s nothing more annoying than hands slipping on a yoga mat. A slippery yoga mat is like a car with bald tires, and you can’t go anywhere. Why does your yoga mat get so slick?
It’s because they’re made of different materials or coated differently. Perhaps it’s done so that the mats don’t absorb sweat and stink up. However, this is not the only reason you are slipping on your mat during some poses. If you want to know why your yoga mat is slippery, look at the following points.
1. Your Yoga Mat is Brand New
Many manufacturers recommend you wash your new yoga mat before using it to remove any slippery substances that might still be on it. It is crucial to follow this advice if you bought your new mat online without touching or feeling it.
Manufacturers often recommend using a mild soap after you wash the mat with water to ensure that it won’t be too slippery when you use it.
2. Materials Used in Yoga Mat
The type of material that your yoga mat is made out of will hugely affect how slippery your mat will be. Hence, if you are searching for a non-slip yoga mat, you should look for one that has a little bit of grip mixed in.
3. You Sweat Enough to Make Your Yoga Mat Slippery
When you do yoga, you’re supposed to get your heart rate up, and you lose a lot of sweat as a result. If your hands slip off your yoga mat, or you fall into a downward dog with one foot on the mat instead of two, it can quickly become frustrating.
4. Slippery Effect Coming from the Oil
Many people use lotion or oil to moisturize their skin. When these oils contact your yoga mat, they create a slippery effect. If you find yourself having a hard time holding poses, or if you are slipping around while practicing yoga, then it’s likely that oil has built up on your mat over time.
5. Specific Yoga Poses Cause You to Slip
Certain poses, such as tripod headstand, require you to stand on your head while placing your hands on the ground and lifting your feet off the ground. If not careful, these poses could lead to slipping.
How to Make Yoga Mat Less Slippery?
The following tips will help you learn how to make a yoga mat less slippery without buying new equipment.
1. Get More Practice
You may find it hard to stick on your yoga mat as a beginner. It’s not surprising. Due to the slippery nature of yoga mats, especially those made from PVC, it isn’t easy to put your hands or feet on them without slipping off.
By far, the best way to ensure you stay on your mat is to practice more until the top layer of your mat wears off. The more you practice, the more the mat will become less slippery and the better the poses will feel. The better they feel, the easier they are to execute.
2. Wash Your Mat
Wash it with mild soap and lukewarm water when you first get your mat. Rinse it thoroughly with clean water and dry it properly. Be careful not to use high-pressure water streams on your mat, as it might damage the delicate surface of your mat.
Dry the mat in the shade and don’t expose it to direct sunlight for too long. By applying water to your mats, they will slowly become sticky.
3. Try a Towel
Some people recommend placing towels under each foot or hand to prevent slipping. You could also use a non-slip yoga mat liner underneath your regular yoga mat.
Choose a towel made of natural materials such as cotton, linen, or hemp. Synthetic textiles made from nylon or polyester are slippery when wet, so stay away from them.
Avoid towels with graphic prints and designs, as these can distract you during your practice. Solid colors or prints that match your style and do not distract you during training are the best options.
4. Practice on One Side
If you want to prevent slippage, you should practice on one side of the mat. Unroll the side with no downward-facing arrows, the one facing up. Because it is designed to be slick and smooth, you don’t slip while doing poses like warrior II or downward-facing dog.
5. Consider a Double-Sided Yoga Mat
In addition to the standard yoga mats, there are other options for those who tend to slip and slide during their practice. A double-sided yoga mat has a non-slip surface on both sides.
This non-slip yoga mat is designed for a sticky grip and good traction, while its second side mimics the feel of actually being on the ground. It prevents you from slipping while doing your workout routines.
6. A Proper Layering
You can create a microfiber towel backing for a yoga mat to make it less slippery. It is possible to do this by spraying water onto the top of the yoga mat and then laying a towel over the upper side. As a result, you will practice more comfortably and reduce slipperiness.
7. Wear Gloves and Socks
One of the best ways to prevent yourself from slipping is to wear a pair of non-slip gloves. Having a better grip on the mat will make it easier for you to perform the poses without having to worry about accidentally falling off in the middle of your practice.
Another way to avoid slipping is to wear socks. In addition to providing an added layer of security, these socks usually prevent you from slipping even further during your yoga class.
8. Apply Sea Salt
Sea salt is a cheap, helpful ingredient for making your yoga mat less slippery. It helps keep the grip in place over time, and it is better for you than many commercial sprays or oils.
Sprinkle sea salt on your mat, scrub it around with a towel, and then wipe it off. As soon as you do that, you’ll be surprised at the ease with which you’ll be able to get traction. The salt acts as an abrasive to break down any residue build-up and make the surface area rougher.
It can reduce slipping even if you don’t keep using it. However, when you do, you’ll have a surface that is non-stick and resists sweat and other contaminants.
9. Apply Vinegar on the Yoga Mat
The acetic acid in the vinegar helps dissolve oil and sweat on your mat, making it less slippery. You may spray it directly on the mat or use a clean cloth to spread it evenly. Allow it to sit for 10 minutes, and then wipe the area with a clean cloth.
10. Use Baby Powder on Your Yoga Mat
You can sprinkle some powder on the yoga mat and rub it in with your hands. It will help absorb moisture and keep your mat from slipping.
Just remember, do not spray too much of the baby powder, especially before doing sun salutation poses that involve sweating as you may slip and fall while facing down.
How to Test for Slipperiness?
The coefficient of friction determines the mat’s slip resistance. The higher the value, the more secure one feels while practicing yoga on a mat. It is achieved using a non-synthetic material to make the mat, which can be done with natural rubber or jute fibers.
A simple way to test for slipperiness is to grab the mat with one hand and pull it toward you as you slide your foot across it. If your foot is hard to move, the mat is not slippery enough. If you can move your foot easily, the mat is too slippery.
A general rule of thumb is that the harder it is for your foot to move across the mat, the better.
When you test a mat for slipperiness, make sure your hands are dry and that there is nothing on your feet’s soles. Additionally, you should wear socks or stockings when testing for slipperiness as they will increase your grip on the mat.
If you follow the above methods, you will prevent your yoga mat from sliding and increase your grip even in the sweatiest conditions.
A non-slip solution will not only make your experience better but will also prolong the life of your yoga mat. It is no surprise that more people prefer a sticky mat to one that slides all over the place, as it makes it much easier to stay steady and stable during your practice.