Do Real Yogis Use Yoga Mats?

Yoga has come a long way from its humble beginnings as a way for ancient Indian mystics to connect with their inner selves. Today, yoga is an increasingly popular form of exercise, with millions of people worldwide practicing it regularly. However, as yoga has become more mainstream, some of its classic elements have come under scrutiny. One such element is the use of yoga mats. Some yogis swear by them, while others claim they are unnecessary. So, do real yogis use yoga mats? Let’s take a closer look.

Yoga mats are the ubiquitous accessory found in every yoga class, whether it’s at your local gym or in a swanky studio. They are meant to give you a stable and slip-resistant surface to practice yoga on. But the question remains: are they really necessary? When yoga first originated, thousands of years ago, there were no yoga mats. Practitioners would typically use animal skins or cloth as a cushion instead. However, as yoga has evolved over the years, so have the tools used to practice it. Mats are now commonplace, but that doesn’t mean they are the only way to practice yoga.

Do Real Yogis Use Yoga Mats?

So, do real yogis use yoga mats? The answer is not a simple yes or no. It really depends on the individual yogi’s preferences and needs. Some yogis prefer the grip and cushion provided by a mat, while others find them cumbersome and prefer the feel of the bare floor beneath their feet. It’s worth noting that there are many different types of yoga, and some forms, such as Ashtanga or vinyasa flow, may require more grip and stability than others. In these cases, a yoga mat may be beneficial.

Another factor to consider is hygiene. Yoga classes can get crowded and sweaty, and without a mat, you may find yourself practicing on a damp or dirty floor. Mats, especially those made from natural rubber or other eco-friendly materials, are easy to clean and can provide a barrier between you and any unpleasant odors or germs on the floor.

Ultimately, whether or not to use a yoga mat is up to each individual practitioner. Some yogis find that using a mat helps them focus and feel more grounded, while others find them distracting or uncomfortable. If you’re new to yoga or looking to try a new style of yoga, it may be worth investing in a mat to see if it enhances your practice. However, if you’ve been practicing for a while and find that a mat is hindering rather than helping your practice, it may be time to try practicing without one.


In conclusion, the use of yoga mats is a personal preference that depends on many factors, including the type of yoga being practiced, personal preference, and hygiene concerns. Ultimately, there is no right or wrong answer when it comes to yoga mats – it’s up to each individual yogi to decide what works best for them and their practice. However, it’s worth remembering that while a mat may not be necessary, it can provide numerous benefits such as stability, cleanliness, and grip. So, give it a try and see if it enhances your practice. Namaste!