Yoga Mat vs Towel – Difference Between Yoga Mat and Towel

Yoga is a Sanskrit word that means union of mind, body and soul. Yoga is very ancient, and it originated in India. Yoga is a technique through which we try to control our mind and body by detaching ourselves from the consciousness or reality of the world. Different types of schools are there in the world that practices yoga and its goal. In Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism, yoga plays an important role.

Today Yoga has become very important globally because of the healing power, calmness and stillness it provides to the person. Yoga Mat and Towel are the two components that are required while performing Yoga.

Yoga Mat vs Towel

The main difference between Yoga Mat and Towel is that Yoga Mat is made up of thicker materials like PVC, thermoplastic elastomer etc. That helps to clean the yoga mat easily, in case any dirt is stuck to it. On the other hand, a yoga towel is made up of natural materials or fabric like cotton, jute, bamboo etc. Yoga Mat is larger and comes in different thicknesses depending upon the user. While Yoga Towel is different from usual towel because of its gripping quality.

Yoga Mat and Towel

Yoga Mats are like sticky mats that provide grip while practising yoga or exercises on it. It doesn’t allow hands and feet to slip from the mat. Earlier versions of the Yoga mat include rubber that was made by a yoga teacher named Angela Farmer in 1982. In today’s time, mats are made up of different things like plastic, rubber, materials like cork, hessian etc. These things help to provide comfort, grip, and weight at a good price.

Yoga Towels are designed specifically to perform yoga on them. Yoga Towels are put on the yoga mat as it helps from slipping hands and feet due to sweat. Yoga Towels are mostly used in Bikram Yoga or hot yoga where there is a lot of sweating. The main purpose of yoga towels is to absorb them. Many yoga towels have small grips on them. Materials from which they are made usually vary. Sometimes natural materials are used, sometimes recycled materials are used.

Comparison Table Between Yoga Mat and Towel

Parameters of ComparisonYoga MatYoga Towel
Materials usedRubber, Hessian, cork, PVC, thermoplastic elastomer, TPE.Recycled materials like plastic or natural materials like bamboo, jute, natural rubber, cotton
UsageCan be used without a yoga towel.Used with yoga mat by placing them on the top.
Absorption FactorCannot absorb sweat and becomes slippery.Meant for absorbing sweat and has higher gripping quality.
Laundry FactorCan be washed with a cleaning solution or water.Easy to be washed with hands or in a washing machine.
Protection FactorProtects from tearing because of constant usage.Protects mats from developing holes.

What is Yoga Mat?

The concept of using Yoga mats was developed in the 20th century. In ancient times, Yoga was practised on kusha grass or hard earth without using mats or any type of cover. In those times, yoga mats were the skins or rugs of wild animals like tigers or lions. Since there was scarcity, it was rarely used. When yoga was introduced in the west, they were unable to do the asanas without a mat. They often slip on the floor. So in 1982, a German Yoga teacher, an angela farmer, used carpet and cut it like towel size for yoga classes.

Then with the help of her father, she was able to start the production of Yoga mats that were called sticky mats because of their gripping power. Yoga mats differ in size, thickness, composition, texture, weight and price. Various types of yoga mats can be found like soft yoga mats, travel yoga mats, high-performance yoga mats etc. Mats come in different patterns and colours, making them more attractive.

Some of the yoga mats can even be folded into small squares. They are made up of various materials like PVC, rubber, etc. Now Yoga mats have become eco-friendly because of natural materials used in the making. Yoga Mats have now become a symbol in modern yoga. Now using yoga mats have become a ritual that is opening the mat, performing asanas, chanting mantras and then rolling it.

What is Yoga Towel?

Yoga Towels are used to place above yoga mats. They are specifically designed to absorb sweat. Yoga Towels are very different from ordinary towels that we use. It is known for its uniqueness as it has a small grip that helps it to have stability over the yoga mat. It also prevents hands and feet from slipping or falling while performing asanas. Yoga Towels are mostly popular in Bikram Yoga or Hot Yoga.

Yoga Towels have a high absorbing quality. They are usually made from natural products like bamboo, jute, rubber or sometimes from recycled products like plastic bottles which makes them more beneficial. As it provides sustainability as well as they are eco-friendly. Yoga Towels becomes crucial when a balancing position is performed.

Many people use it for all types of Yoga. Because they tend to sweat more.so Yoga towel helps them to use where ever they want. It acts as an extra cushion while performing yoga.

Main Differences Between Yoga Mat and Towel

  1. Materials used in Yoga Mats include Rubber, Hessian, cork, PVC, thermoplastic elastomer, TPE. Materials used in Yoga Towel are Recycled materials like plastic or natural materials like bamboo, jute, natural rubber, cotton.
  2. Yoga Mat can be used without a yoga towel. Yoga Towel is used with yoga mat by placing them on the top.
  3. Yoga Mat cannot absorb much sweat and becomes slippery. Yoga Towel is meant for absorbing sweat and has higher gripping quality.
  4. Yoga Mat can be washed with a cleaning solution or water. Yoga Towel is easy to be washed with hands or in a washing machine.
  5. Yoga Mat protects from tearing because of constant usage. Yoga Towel protects mats from developing holes or tear.

Conclusion

Both Yoga Mat and Towel are used while performing Yoga. Both have emerged in the modern period. In ancient times, mats and towels were not used. Both were designed so that asanas or positions can be performed easily without falling or slipping. Yoga Mats can be used without towels. But towels cannot be used with mats. Because it sticks with yoga mats.

It is easier to clean yoga towels because of their fabric. But cleaning yoga mats can become sometimes challenging. It cannot be washed in the washing machine. If both are combined, then it gives maximum benefits to the user. Placing a yoga towel on the yoga mat is also good for hygiene.

Conclusion

  1. https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=RUAlDwAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PA63&dq=Yoga+Mat+and+Towel+&ots=2Oq8PpzxhK&sig=BEia9FBLjfIiAG3EFHTMKRusqNg
  2. https://mcstor.library.milligan.edu/bitstream/handle/11558/2477/Orick_Ryan_20170524.pdf?sequence=12
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