The majority of the worlds yoga mats are made from mass-produced throw-away plastics like PVC ( polyvinyl chloride ). They're cheap and easy to come by, but are they compatible with the ethos and demands of yoga? Here's 5 reasons why you might want to avoid using a plastic yoga mat.
Plastic yoga mats are prone to awkward stretching and malforming. They're also poor performing when it comes to sweaty fingers and toes. When you dripping with sweat and focusing on that downward-Facing dog the last thing you want is to have slipping toes and trembling fingers. Not only is a slippery plastic surface uncomfrotable its down-right dangerous and can results in strained ligiments, bruises and a frustrating experience that limits your yoga experience.
PVC either ends up in landfill or being incinerated (see below). Overtime PVC breaks down into micro plastics that leach into our oceans, sealife and remain a environmental threat for thousands of years.
When PVC is burned, the chlorine produces extremely toxic and persistent dioxins that end up in soil, fish, animals, water, air
The main ingredient in PVC is vinyl chloride, which is a known human carcinogen. During production phthalates and heavy metals (lead and cadmium) are added to PVC to make it soft and flexible. As you deeply inhale during your yoga routines, fumes from your mat are released and come into contact with your lungs and skin that studies suggest may be harmful .
Ultimately PVC cannot be recycled and its lifecycle is destructive to the environment and incompatible with the ethos of yoga. There are much better alternatives out there that are better for you, kinder to the environment and make a massive change to your experience and enjoyment of yoga.
We're on a mission to provide alternatives for the eco-conscious yogi. Join us and let us support you in yoga journey.
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