As far as yoga mat manufacturers are concerned, Manduka is an industry leader when it comes to high-quality and comfortable yoga mats. The company uses environmentally-friendly construction materials that offer ideal support without being too heavy. Though Manduka mats aren’t the cheapest on the market, they are a worthwhile investment if you’re serious about yoga.
Two of the top-selling Manduka mats are the Pro and the Prolite. Each of the models bears some marked similarities and differences. We’ve broken down the most important information, along with information about how to pick the best yoga mat for you.
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Things to Consider When Choosing a Yoga Mat
There are dozens of yoga mats on the market, and at first glance, picking the right one can seem like an overwhelming challenge. After you decide what brand to buy, you still have to narrow down the amount of support, portability, and overall size. But as long as you know what you’re looking for, picking the right yoga mat doesn’t have to be an overwhelming endeavor.
The style of yoga that you prefer has an impact on the kind of mat that’s best for you. If you primarily engage in hot yoga, you’ll need to get a yoga towel to cover a standard mat, or to get a combination mat. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself sliding and slipping around the mat.
For any form of yoga other than hot yoga, a standard and combination mat are both useful. Keep in mind, though, that if you engage in more active flowing yoga styles, you might want to invest in a yoga mat that has thick cushioning.
Unsurprisingly, your height has an impact on the yoga mat that’s right for you. For people who are taller than six feet, it’s important to get a mat that’s greater than seventy-one inches in length. Otherwise, your mat will be too short to support both your hands and feet when you do lengthening poses like downward dog. It’s also important to get a mat that’s wider than a standard twenty-four inches, as your longer legs need extra space to stretch out.
The thickness of the mat is the next big topic. A mat that’s thinner will allow you to feel the floor beneath you. If you want more cushioned support, a thicker mat is a better choice.
The Manduka Prolite yoga mat is available in two lengths, so you can pick the one that best suits your yoga needs. The shorter one is 71 inches, while the longer one is 79 inches. No matter which mat you select, it will be 24 inches in length. This height and width should be adequate for any individual who’s less than six feet tall. For those who are taller, though, the Pro yoga mat is a better option.
The total thickness of the Prolite mat is 4.7 millimeters. This means that it’s thin enough to be easily rolled up and maneuvered, but it’s thick enough to stay in place and provide ideal support. The Prolite is created out of extremely dense PVC material, which allows it to cushion your joints during complex stretches and exercises. The floor will be more easily felt than if you used the Pro version, but there are many people who prefer the more tactile contact.
The Prolite has a weight of just four pounds in the smaller size. In the larger size, it’s still less than five pounds total, clocking in at just 4.6 pounds. This makes it easy to transport from place to place, and so people might prefer it if they often carry their yoga mat long distances.
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The Manduka Pro is available in larger sizes when compared to the Prolite, so it’s the best option for taller individuals. Like the Prolite, the Pro mat is crafted from dense and environmentally-friendly PVC material.
The Pro has a 26-inch width, slightly wider than the Prolite. Like the Prolite, it’s available in two different lengths. One is 71 inches, and the other is 85 inches. The extra two inches of width are good for people taller than six feet, since it’s likely that your knees will reach the very edges of a 24-inch mat.
The Pro is thicker than the Prolite at six total millimeters. It’s still portable enough to bring with you to different places, but the weight clocks in at more than seven pounds. The taller size weighs 9.5 pounds. This is a hefty weight for a yoga mat, especially if you intend to carry the mat to yoga class or haul it around a park with you.
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The biggest differences are in the dimensions of each mat. Both the mats are made from the same dense PVC material, and both provide adequate cushioning against the ground.
The Prolite mat is lightweight, thin, and short. It’s also a little less wide than the Pro mat. As such, it’s the more portable of the two mats, making it an ideal choice for individuals on the go.
The Pro mat is significantly heavier, especially if you get the larger size. It’s a little wider, which means it can suit individuals over six feet tall. For people more than six feet tall, traditional yoga mat sizes often aren’t enough to accommodate their knees.
Both the Prolite and Pro mats are high quality, comfortable yoga mat offerings. The best one for you depends largely on your needs. If you need a lightweight and portable yoga mat, the Prolite is what you’re looking for. On the other hand, if you’re a taller person who needs a larger yoga mat size, the Pro might have you covered.