Product Review: Manduka

Photo: Photo Courtesey of Manduka
Yoga To Go

For many of us, fall means getting back into our workout regimens. As our schedules get busy and what we carry around with us for work, lunch and our work out seems to grow, it can be easy to use the “I’ll leave this at home” excuse to make our commutes a little easier. And it’s our workout gear that usually gets left at the front door. Including yoga mats. Clearly, we need a solution.

Company:Manduka

Item(s) tested & price:

  • eKO Lite mat $42.00 (3.5 lbs.; 68” x 24” x 1/8")
  • eKO mat $70.00 (7lbs.; 71” x 26” x 3/16")
  • Mat sling $38.00

Where can the item be purchased? At Manduka online

The claim of the product: The Manduka eKO mat is the only choice for those who want a high-performance, durable yoga mat and are passionate about protecting our planet.

What was great about the product:

  • We loved the feel of the mats — they didn’t feel too “rubbery,”, but we didn’t slip!
  • The eKO Lite mat was perfect for taking to work. At only 3.5 lbs, we now have no excuse not to take it with us.
  • Although the eKO mat is heavier, the sling made it easy to carry. And with the sling’s accessory pouch, we could carry our keys and phone — no extra baggage needed!
  • The price point of these mats is on par with traditional mats. We did like that the eKO Lite mat was less expensive — it’s a great mat for any practice, whether you’re travelling or not.
  • Both mats are made from sustainably harvested, non-Amazon tree rubber.
  • When the mats are disposed of they biodegrade. The claim is that it will not leave behind a toxic residue, but we were unable to test this.
  • Instead of using synthetic polyester for reinforcement, the mats contain recycled silk and natural cotton.
  • Packaging is printed on recycled paper with soy inks.

What was NOT so great about the product:

  • Mats are made in Taiwan.
  • Slings are made in Vietnam.
  • Sling does not state what materials are used to make it.
  • Information on the mat does not state how long it will take for the it to biodegrade.
  • Because it is a natural rubber mat, it has a strong rubber smell. We suggest you lay your mat out for a day to release the smell when you first purchase it — the smell does fade with time.

Grade from Green Living: B (A great eco option that actually makes taking your mat to work easier. Though producing the products in Taiwan and Vietnam and shipping them to North America is something we feel can be improved upon).