Still using a yoga towel for hot yoga? Try a non-slip mat instead


Hot yoga, with its intense heat and dynamic poses, is a unique and invigorating practice. Whether you’re practicing Bikram Hot Yoga, Hot 26+2, or Heated Vinyasa Flow, one of the greatest draws to this style of practice is the powerful sweat that it induces.


These steamy, sweaty classes can leave you feeling detoxified and rejuvenated, but they can also leave your mat feeling more like a slip n’ slide than a steady foundation for a Downward Dog. It's difficult to stay present in the moment and absorb the benefits of the practice when you're constantly readjusting in Warrior 2 or worrying about face-planting in your jump-throughs. 

For many hot yoga enthusiasts, a yoga towel has been a trusted companion to manage sweat during these sessions. However, sometimes your towel can just lead to more bunching, more readjusting, and a reduced sense of grounding. 

hot yoga towel
Enter the non-slip yoga mat. A relatively new addition in the yoga world, non-slip mats eliminate the need for a towel. If you're wondering if they're worth the investment, read on. 

Here are 5 Reasons to Invest in a Non-Slip Yoga Mat for Hot Yoga (and Finally Say Goodbye to Your Yoga Towel)

1. Non-Slip Yoga Mats Have Improved, Consistent Grip

Sweating can make it difficult to maintain grip on a regular yoga mat, which can lead to slipping and a lack of focus. While a yoga towel can help avoid slipping by absorbing the sweat, it doesn't necessarily provide a great, tactile grip. Non-slip mats are designed to provide better grip, allowing you to maintain stability and confidence in challenging poses, even when drenched in sweat. 

2. Non-Slip Yoga Mats Are Safer than Towels

A yoga towel may stop you from slipping, but more often than not, it just feels like more material to get tripped up on. Most yoga towels have sticky beading on the bottom to keep them in place, but these glue-based beads start to wear down after a few cycles in the wash. Then comes the sliding, bunching, and bunching. Practicing directly on non-slip yoga mat can help to reduce the risk of slipping and falling, creating a safer practice environment. 

eka pada bakasana on cork yoga mat

Yoga Teacher Francisco Fezas Vital flying high in Eka Pada Bakasana

3. Non-Slip Mats Contribute to Better Alignment

Hot yoga often involves more dynamic poses, and, in Bikram or Hot 26+2 style, longer holds in each pose. Not only do you need to meet these challenges poses with mental fortitude, but with precision and control in the physical body.  Proper alignment is key for an effective and sustainable yoga practice. In fact, constant misalignment in your asanas can sometimes do more harm than good. With a non-slip mat, practitioners can immerse themselves fully in the practice without interruptions caused by adjusting a slippery or bunching towel.

4. Yoga Mats are More Sustainable than Towels

Since your  yoga towel absorbs all the sweat from your practice, it should be washed after each use. Not only do these large yoga towels mean an increased water and energy burden, but many of them are made from synthetic materials that release microfibers (read: microplastics) with each wash. These microplastics end up in our water systems, contaminating our irrigation sources, drinking water, and oceans.

5. Non-Slip Mats are More Cost-Efficient

A dedicated hot yoga practitioner will need to invest in a handful of towels, which can cost upwards of $60. Meanwhile, a single yoga mat can support you in years of practice. Non-slip mats are built to withstand regular use, and can be offering a durable and long-lasting investment for your yoga practice. 

parsva bakasana on cork yoga mat

Francisco finding stability in Parsva Bakasana

6. BONUS TIP: Cork Yoga Mats Have Improved Hygiene and Cleanliness 

A lot gets released in a hot yoga class; on a mental-emotional level, and most certainly on a physical level. Most yoga towels — and yoga mats — will trap all the bacteria from a sweaty practice.

However, cork yoga mats are naturally antimicrobial, meaning they inhibit the growth of microbes and bacteria. Furthermore, cork has an impermeable cell structure that does not actually absorb liquids, which is why this incredible material has been used for centuries for wine stoppers, floats for fishing nets, and even in the boats of the Portuguese navigators.

To keep your cork yoga mat in optimal shape after a sweaty hot yoga session, simply wipe down the surface of the mat with a simple cleaning solution and lay it flat to dry before rolling up. Read the full article on how to clean your cork yoga mat.

Choosing a Non-Slip Yoga Mat for Your Hot Yoga Practice

Most non-slip yoga mats are made from rubber or polyurethane, and have a sleek, shiny surface layer. While these mats do offer a superior grip and durability compared to a usual plastic yoga mat, they do present some ecological challenges. 

For a yoga mat offers a gecko-level grip AND is kind to the earth, look no further than a Cork Yoga Mat.


cork yoga mat