Creative Commons licence CC mikecpeck

During the holiday season, I was stopping for a bite in the Prudential Center Food Court after a sweaty yoga class when, in my post-savasana haze, I was so at ease that I forgot my mat at the table when I left for home.  This event, in essentially forcing me to purchase a new mat, introduced me to the fabulous and helpful world of yoga mats and accessories.

You see, on my old mat, I was slipping and sliding all over the place.  Those of you who’ve ever purchased a $15 mat from Marshalls and thought “yippee!” and then found yourself struggling not to crash into Alligator Pose (flat on your stomach) from Downward Dog know what I’m talking about – those mats get slippery!  That’s why I had to share my love for a few essentials that have kept my hands and feet from sliding out from under me, and made me more comfortable when I practice.

1.  The new mat I purchased and now use is a Jade Yoga Mat. These eco-friendly mats are sold online for about $65, with their travel mats (a great, lightweight option) priced at about $50.  The yoga studio where I attend class, Back Bay Yoga Studio, sells the regular Jade Yoga Mat for slightly less than the online price, and I can’t even explain how “worth it” these non-slippery gems are!

2.  If you already have a mat and aren’t looking to purchase a new one, but you find that it starts to feel like a slip-and-slide when you sweat, Yogitoes are a fabulous solution.  Their “Skidless” Yoga towel can be put over the mat you already have and instantly keeps your paws in place.  And, your purchase of one of their towels can help support a good cause! Part of the proceeds of the pink towel goes to the Dr. Susan Love Foundation to fight breast cancer, and a part of the proceeds of the lavender towel go straight to The Rape Foundation in recognition of “Sexual Assault Awareness Month.”

3. If you’ve given meditation a try, but find it desperately uncomfortable to sit up straight on a hard floor for an extended period of time, Zafus and Zabutons are fantastic meditation cushions that make quieting the mind a much more comfortable experience.  I recently discovered these while taking a meditation class at BBY (you can take them there for a suggested donation of $5 and elsewhere throughout the city), and I found I was able to sit up straight for half and hour with hardly any discomfort. This Round Silk Jacquard Zafu Meditation Cushion was similar to the one I used in class, but you can find several different kinds on