Yinyans Lockdown Yoga Classes
YinYan offers a broad range of classes to cover all levels of fitness and experience, and even if yogas not your thing, youll find meditation, Pilates and even Tea and Tai Chi on their list of online classes. Theyre offering a number of classes for free to support those in need of a boost. Plus, you can book seven days of unlimited classes for £9.99 a week, a single class for £5.50, or six classes for £30. Weve written about YinYan before, as one of the many brilliant independent businesses that gives a lot back to the local community. Youll find a full list of their lockdown classes via this link:
Best Hot Yoga Mat: Manduka Pro Yoga Mat 6mm
One of the best overall mats we tested, the Manduka Pro Yoga Mat is just that made for pros! Specifically, pros who love nothing more than a sweatier-than-thou workout. Even if youre not a typically sweaty person, hot-yoga classes are held at temperatures ranging from 90 degrees Fahrenheit up to 108, with loads of humidity in there to boot. Point being: Youre going to be dripping, and you definitely want a no-slip mat that can withstand all that wetness. Enter: Manduka Pro Yoga Mat.
A beast in its own right, the 6-millimeter-thick mat is beloved by advanced yogis and instructors alike for its density and top and underside gripping, all of which were the reasons we felt it performed better than any other mat we tested during hot yoga. Clocking in at a whopping 7.5 pounds, the PVC mats sheer weight anchors it to the floor and ensures a stable workout. The Pros top-side texture comprises vertical and horizontal grooves that produced some of the best grip we experienced during testing, even when we had sweat dripping all over the place. The underside also has tons of grip, in the form of a rugged dot pattern that we found stayed put on both carpeted and hardwood floors.
All in all, however, we found the Manduka Pro to be an excellent mat for both hot-yoga and regular yoga devotees and thus worthy of its steep price point. Not only is it backed by a lifetime warranty from Manduka, the mat is also Oeko-Tex certified and latex-free.
Vanessa Hudgens Shows Off Her Yoga
01:09 EST, 28 June 2012 | Updated:
She puts a lot of time and effort into looking after her figure, so you can’t blame Vanessa Hudgens wanting to show it off.
After a morning workout session, the High School Musical star flaunted her toned figure in a clingy vest and skinny jeans on Wednesday afternoon.
She teamed the outfit with a pair of wedge sandals as she headed to a business meeting in Hollywood.
Super tight: Actress Vanessa Hudgens shows off her figure in a clingy vest and skinny jeans in Hollywood yesterday
And it looks like the meeting may have been productive as she left carrying a script.
Earlier that day, Vanessa and her boyfriend of nine months were spotted with his and hers yoga mats as they headed to a class in Los Angeles.
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What Is The Best Thickness Of A Yoga Mat
The right thickness of yoga mat really depends on personal preference. If you have joints that ache after exercise choose a yoga mat above 3mm thick. This will make sure there’s enough cushion to support you whilst you move. If. you like to feel the floor/ground beneath you , plump for 3mm or below.
Yoga Hub Liverpools Online Classes
If you love yoga and live in Liverpool, youve probably heard of Stuart Alexander and his friendly, welcoming yoga studio at some point! Like all of the independent yoga studios well recommend, Yoga Hub Liverpool attracts and supports fantastic yoga teachers. Theyre offering morning and evening relaxation classes as well as a varied timetable. As they say on their website: We are here to support and serve you and we always hugely appreciate the support we get from our community to allow us to keep the business alive, keep the space open and provide a wide and varied timetable with amazing teachers!
Prices for online classes: Drop in: £5, four classes: £15, unlimited classes for a month: £45. Find out more via their website.
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The Path To Enlightenment
After two years of practising yoga, first at a leisure centre and then at a health club, I recently made a spiritual ‘pilgrimage’ to Rishikesh, the yoga capital of India. Arriving at this beautiful town in the foothills of the Himalayas, I walked past the rows and rows of ashrams offering daily yoga classes, spiritual talks, group chanting and prayer and began to feel a little sheepish. In these ashrams lived thousands of people who had given up the material world to devote their lives to the pursuit of inner peace through yoga. Observing strict rules , these men and women had freedom in their eyes. Back in London, having gone to three classes a week for two years, I had been lingering under the impression that I was a hardcore yogi, a few shoulder stands short of enlightenment.
Wandering through Rishikesh, stopping to talk with holy men known as sadhus, I quickly realised that I was a product of yoga Western-style. With my electric-blue, sticky yoga mat, Gap ‘athletic’ shorts and DKNY T-shirts, I was a walking embodiment of the commercialisation of yoga. In my suitcase, I even had a copy of Christy Turlington’s Living Yoga book – my wife and I had wanted to visit Rishikesh after reading about Christy Turlington’s own pilgrimage there. Does it get any more Western? A celebrity-inspired journey. A suitcase full of yoga ‘gear’. His-and-hers coloured mats. It was all a bit ‘-Put-It-On-The-Credit-Card’ rather than ‘ Shanti’.
Other Yoga Mats We Tested
Jade Yoga Harmony Mat
If youre looking for a greener yoga practice, the Jade Yoga Harmony Mat is a solid choice. PVC-free and made in the USA, the 4.5-millimeter thick natural rubber mats textured surface offers up a sticky resilience perfect for low-impact and high-octane workouts alike, while the underside stays put on hard floors and carpeting. Available in two lengths , the mat comes in a slew of cute colors, from fire engine red to a pretty slate blue. One downside was that the flat texture of the mat tended to pick up lots of dust and debris off our floors, which made wiping it clean a bit tougher. Bonus: Jade Yoga plants a tree for every mat sold, and even the mats label is printed on recycled paper with soy ink. Unfortunately, the brand offers only a one-year warranty.
Gaiam Performance Dry Grip Yoga Mat 5MM
Hot yoga devotees, listen up: The Gaiam Performance Dry Grip Yoga Mat 5MM was created specifically to wick away moisture even as practice temperatures increase, and we can attest it holds up to its promise. During one particularly sweaty yoga session, the mat stayed dried the entire time . We liked the PVC mats smooth surface, and the soft support of its 5-millimeter density. Free of latex and phthalates, this a good option for those looking for a thick, rubber-free mat that is relatively lightweight .
Yoga Accessories 1/4-Inch Thick High Density Yoga Mat
Jade Yoga Voyager Mat
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What Should I Look Out For When Buying A Yoga Mat
Sifting through the myriad mats on the market is a veritable minefield. As befitting a growing field, all manner of mats are available across a wide price spectrum. While some of the cheaper models are respectable, they start getting better at around £30.
Some key aspects to consider include:
- Thickness: If it’s too thin, it can be slightly uncomfortable or painful. Too thick and you’ll lose your connection to the ground . Yoga mats range from about 1/8 inch to 1/4 inch.
- Material: This will affect the performance. There are several materials to consider, with different textures, levels of stickiness and sponginess. Traditionally, most were PVC. There are now many eco-friendly alternatives, like recycled rubber, organic cotton and cork.
- Texture: Texture is crucial as it provides traction, helping to prevent slipping in certain positions and movements. Some mats are therefore bumpy, which you might like or find annoying. I found the smoother ones more comfortable, and the best smooth ones guard equally well against slipping. Also, a smoother, slightly slippery mat can with time become fine.
- Stickiness: Again, stickiness stops you from sliding, ensuring you remain aligned. Personally, I think you can go too far on this front the stickier mats made my hands extremely claggy so look for something that strikes a balance.
- Weight: If you’re taking your mat to and from classes, perhaps with a commute factored in, you won’t want to be lugging around something that’s too heavy.
Things To Be Aware Of Before You Buy A Yoga Mat
- What level of grip does the exercise mat provide?
- How heavy is the yoga mat to manoeuvre around every day?
- Are you diligent with the anti-bac after a workout?
- Do you like smooth or textured surfaces on a yoga mat?
Well, we’ve done our best to source yoga mats, exercise mats and fitness mats that not only fit every budget but that are also definitively great. From luxe athletic brands to more affordable options it’s time to shop and ship your new home gym.
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Best Thick Yoga Mat: Gaiam Premium Yoga Mat 6mm
Chock-full of springy, PVC cushion, the rubber-free Gaiam Premium Yoga Mat is perfect for anyone looking for a little extra support for their elbows and knees during their weekly Cat Cow poses. Clocking in at 6 millimeters thick, the mat is twice as thick as most on the market, providing loads of joint protection. More about that thickness: Though its a whopping 6 millimeters, the mat feels more dense than spongelike, meaning we had zero problems finding stability, even with the extra cushion underfoot.
While the grip isnt quite as firm as the Lululemon Reversible Mat, it is still among the strongest we tested, and definitely the best of the cheapish options. Featuring a surface full of tiny textured grooves, the mat has a tacky feel, offering up lots of springy traction, even during sweatier sessions. That said, if youre someone who wants to feel completely cemented into your mat, the Lululemon Reversible is going to be a better choice.
Another major selling point? That price. Not everyone wants to spend a small fortune on a yoga matus included! If you want to get the most bang for your buck, this is the absolute best choice at this price point.
Boasting a lifetime guarantee from Gaiam, the mat, which is free of latex and phthalates, is available in 30 colorways , ranging from jewel-toned tribal patterns to sedate darker designs, and each comes with one free yoga class that can be downloaded from the Gaiam app.
China Spirit Based On The Wirral Goes Virtual
As a Chinese Cultural and Martial Arts Centre, China Spirit prioritises creating a calm and balanced mind and promotes responsible, compassionate actions, paired with focusing on moderation, enjoying a simpler life, and deepening thoughts and controlling the sensory experiences in the coming days and weeks.
Visit:www.chinaspirit.org.uk for online Tai Chi, and, in the future, Kung fu classes. The modest fee goes back into the community, not for any personal profit.
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Best Nonslip Yoga Mat: Manduka Eko Superlite Yoga And Pilates Travel Mat
What we love most about the Manduka eKO Superlite Yoga and Pilates Travel Mat is that if you took away its portability selling points , its a superior nonslip mat. Heres why: While its light enough to travel with, the mat still maintains enough weight to stick to the floor and stay put, whether its on hard surfaces or carpet which is rare for a thinner, lightweight mat. But the mats chief asset is the excellent grip provided by its tightly woven surface. With a slightly dimpled appearance and a tacky texture, the mat provided tons of traction and stability during even our sweatiest workouts.
While traveling might not be part of our current agendas, its certainly something were all hoping for in the near future, and if youre someone who loves to do yoga on the road or someone who lives in a small space and simply wants a yoga mat that can be easily tucked away look no further than this mat. Weighing only 2.2 pounds , the 1.5-millimeter-thick mat can be folded into a 10-inch-by-12-inch rectangle that can be neatly tucked into your tote, backpack or suitcase.
In terms of cushioning, there isnt much here, which is to be expected from a super-portable mat . If youre someone who loves a spongy mat with extra padding, this is not the option for you. But lots of advanced yogis prefer a thinner mat, as they provide greater stability, especially when practicing more active or focused poses.
Fitness Mad Evolution Yoga Mat
Why we like it: Grippy, thin, light, and very well priced.
I usually find kneeling on wooden floors quite uncomfortable but, while this mat was thin at just 4mm, it was comfortable enough. This is thanks to a delicate sponginess and spring.
It was very grippy, both in socks and barefoot, and I didn’t slip once while going through my routine the sign of a good yoga mat. It has a flat surface, and it’s not too sticky, proving you don’t need excessive patterning or stickiness to maintain a firm grip. Like the Liforme, it’s made of recyclable PVC a latex-free material.
I like that it come with a carry string, and it’s light, at just 1kg. Overall, this is a very solid mid-range option at the price, it should work well for beginners or people who do yoga a couple of times a week.
The Airex Calyana Prime was tested by The Telegraph’s Olivia Walmsley. Here are her thoughts:
“This mat is a collaboration between Swiss company Airex and the yoga teacher and physical therapist Buket Akkus. It’s a good everyday mat: sticky enough so your hands or feet don’t slide, but allowing some movement when you want it .
“It provides a nice amount of cushioning, and doesn’t curl up, which is always very annoying. Minor gripes: it’s pretty heavy , so I’d probably leave it at home rather than haul it around town. The colour ocean blue also feels a bit institutional. Other than that, a solid mat for a beginner like me.”
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Best Yoga Mat Overall: Lululemon Reversible Mat 5mm
Lululemons Reversible Mat topped our list for a lot of reasons, chief among them that the mat has two sides, making it the most versatile option we tested. After all, who doesnt love a twofer? Users can choose between a smooth or textured mat , and we found that regardless of which side you use, the mat provides superior stability its hand and feet gripping is unmatched, and it never slipped when placed on hardwood or carpeted flooring.
The mats top layer is coated with polyurethane, which we found to be excellent at absorbing sweat, and it feels silky smooth under your hands and feet, with a sticky effect thats great for sweatier workouts. The textured natural rubber base layer is definitely geared more toward low-sweat workouts but provides equally superior traction when in use.
We found the Reversible Mats 5 millimeters of cushioning ample enough to provide support to sensitive areas , masking the hard floor underneath. Its also slightly larger than the standard yoga mat , coming in 3 inches longer and 2 inches wider than most enough to provide you a bit more coverage without being too huge. That said, if you do want huge , this exact mat comes in a much bigger format.
Best Yoga Mats And Exercise Mats
Sometimes you just want a little more room to move. We get that. This extra-wide, extra-tall yoga mat from the experts over at Yogi Bare is perfect for taller people and those who like more freedom to flow.
USP: It’s gotta be the size, hasn’t it. Most yoga mats are standard size, which, if you’re taller can be a major hindrance.
Dimensions: 213 x 74cm when flat . 4mm thickness.
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Manduka Prolite Yoga And Pilates Mat
Why we like it: Ethically made, and wonderfully durable. Should last for life.
The Manduka PROlite is favoured by The Telegraph’s Boudicca Fox-Leonard, a part-time yoga instructor. Here’s what she has to say:
“For the yogi looking to find a mat that will be able to follow them on their practice journey without flaking, Manduka mats are hard to beat on quality and simplicity. They also have the ethical credentials: they’re non-toxic and 100pc latex free, with an emissions-free manufacturing process.
“While Manduka’s range is overwhelming, opt for the Manduka PROlite. You’ll get a mat light enough to carry without compromising on cushioning. It might prove slippy for those first few practices, but then you and your mat will be stuck to each other for life.”
Manduka promises its mats are made for life, and they come with lifetime guarantees. The most durable option you can find.
Best Yoga Mat For Beginners: Liforme Original Yoga Mat
The Liforme Original Yoga Mat is a great mat on its own, not to mention fancy we love the smooth, almost silky top side and dense, 4.2-millimeter-thick natural rubber cushion. An investment, sure, but its alignment markers are a true highlight not found on most other mats. Giving cues to newbie and pro yogis alike, the subtle design of the mat works as a cheat sheet for beginners, making hand and foot placement much steadier during your yoga practices, especially for those of us who are getting our namaste on from home, without the positioning help from a live instructor.
Available in five happy colors , the mat features more than a dozen indicators from top to bottom, including end-to-end lines that keep hands and feet parallel lengthways, reverse points that keep your hands and feet even when on your back, central lines that keep you centered widthways and 45-degree lines that align your back heels when in standing postures. Having used these markers in our own workouts, we felt more confident as we glided through the motions, knowing that each of our poses was not only accurate but also safe, preventing any unwanted injuries that could occur when left to our own devices. Those lines also helped us to achieve optimal results and learn exactly where we should be on the mat and thus how our bodies should feel in those positions.
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