A slippery yoga mat poses a serious risk of injury. Whether you didn’t know how to pick the right mat, your mat became more slippery due to regular wear and tear, or the product didn’t meet the description, you should not do yoga on a slippery mat.
While the issue is frustrating, there are ways to make your mat less slippery. The trick is knowing what makes it slippery. If you don’t know why your mat is slippery, finding an effective solution would be twice as hard.
Because of this, the first step in finding out how to make it less slippery is to identify the reason behind it.
Why Is Your Yoga Mat Slippery?
There are several common reasons why yoga mats become slippery. Try and see if you can identify the reason behind your slippery yoga mat.
- You just got a new yoga mat. Mats made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) tend to be slippery at the beginning. But the good news is that the more you use them, the more stable they get.
- Your mat is made of a slippery material. Unfortunately, some mats are just more slippery than others. Those made of rubber, TPE (thermoplastic elastomer), and polyurethane are usually less slippery than the others — which is a good thing to keep in mind if you end up buying a new mat.
- You are sweating and adding slickness to the yoga mat. Some people sweat more than others, which is totally normal but can make your mat more slippery.
- You put body lotion before yoga. Feeling clean and fresh to your yoga class feels fantastic, but adding too much body lotion or moisturizer can make your mat slippery.
How to Make a Yoga Mat Less Slippery
Once you know what makes your mat slippery, you can start working on the problem. Here are a few suggestions that might help you out.
Use the Mat More
If the mat is slippery because it’s new, which happens with PVC yoga mats, the issue can be resolved by using it more. The more you use it, the less slippery it becomes.
PVC mats are slippery by default and remain slippery until the upper layer wears off.
So, keep on practicing until the yoga mat feels more firm. Just be careful and do not try advanced or challenging poses while you feel unstable on the mat. Alternatively, you can try the following tricks for a quicker fix.
Always Use the Same Side
Using the same side of the mat will speed up the process of wearing off the upper layer.
However, it may be difficult to distinguish between the two sides on some yoga mats because they’re designed to be used on both. This usually happens when both sides are made of the same material and don’t have any pattern or print on them.
In that case, you can use a permanent marker or another method you find convenient to mark the side of the mat that you exercise on. The less you switch the sides of the mat, the faster the used side will become more comfortable and less slippery.
Wash the Mat
One of the most common ways of making the mat less slippery is to wash it with warm water by hand or in a washing machine.
Just make sure to use a cold and gentle cycle, as the washing machine can ruin some materials. Also, check what your mat is made of and whether washing it in the machine is safe.
But if it’s not, don’t despair. Even dipping it in cold water with soap and leaving it outside to dry can make a big difference.
Most yoga mats are made of PVC materials. These tend to age faster in contact with water, so the effect of washing or wet-wiping your PVC yoga mat should be similar to using it for a longer period.
Use a Towel
If you need an instant and simple solution to a slippery yoga mat, we suggest putting a plain cotton towel on top of your mat. This will help you feel stable and avoid slipping.
If this somehow doesn’t help, try specialized anti-slip towels for yogis. They are washable, absorbent, and commonly used for hot yoga, as they add traction and eliminate slipping even during extremely sweaty sessions. This trick is a true life-saver when sweating makes your mat slippery.
White Vinegar Wipe
Wiping your mat with a solution of white vinegar mixed with equal amounts of water is another good way to make the yoga mat less slippery. Feel free to add a few drops of lemon juice to the mixture or a few drops of essential oil to improve the scent of the solution.
After application, let it sit for a few minutes, and then wipe it off with a wet cloth.
Shower Before Yoga
If you’re doing yoga after a heavy workout to stretch and cool down, you’re probably all sweaty, making your slippery problem worse. Showering before the session can help reduce this.
But do not apply moisturizers and body lotions right before you get on the mat — that’s equally bad when it comes to slipperiness.
Use Socks and Gloves
There are special socks and gloves for yoga (usually with rubber dots on the soles) designed to reduce slipperiness when practising.
If you feel your mat is slippery, yoga socks may be just the right solution for you.
Try Sea Salt
Dissolve a teaspoon of sea salt in water and spray it on the mat. Let it sit for 12 to 24 hours, and then rinse with a damp cloth. This trick will help remove the slippery layer and stabilize the mat.
Although a slippery yoga mat can be irritating and limiting, many tips and tricks target this issue.
We hope our guide helped you realize what’s best for your situation. For more information about anything yoga related, check out other articles on our web site.