Yoga is an amazing workout. The deep stretches and breathing techniques relax us, both mentally and physically. Of course, when you practice yoga, a yoga mat is an essential item. Honestly, you could practice yoga on the floor, but the grip and stability that the mat gives you are better, especially if you are a novice yogi. With yoga comes sweat and with sweat comes bacteria. When was the last time that you cleaned your yoga mat? Do you know how to clean your yoga mat properly?
Why You Need To Clean Your Mat
Think about all those times when you are holding a super hard pose. Beads of sweat start traveling down your nose and are accumulating on your forehead. Then that sweat drops down onto your mat. Each time this happens, the potential for more bacteria and germs to arise is doubled. To stop the cycle of germs, you have to make sure you are cleaning your mat. Here are some simple solutions.
Rubber tends to give off an odor when it is unclean, so you should be able to detect if your mat is becoming too dirty. To prevent an odor from protruding from your yoga mat, try using a disinfectant after every use of your mat. This should result in a routine in-between deep cleaning methods.
A regular disinfectant can be sprayed or if you like going the natural route, vinegar and water make a great, natural disinfectant. Don’t be shy if you are borrowing a mat from your yoga class, either. In fact, that is even more of a reason to spray it down. You don’t want to lay in someone else’s germs or the other way around.
Throw It In The Washing Machine
Some mats have the option of being washed in the washer. If your mat has this option, by all means, throw it in. However, not every yoga mat is created equal. Make sure you read the label that is on your mat. Even if washing the mat in the washing machine is discouraged, throwing it in every once in a while on a delicate wash should be ok. Try the washing machine once a month.
If you are washing the mat, it is best if you find somewhere inside to hang it. The sun is not too nice on rubber products. Try hanging the mat in the shower or over the stairway. If you are disinfecting your mat at home, let it air out as just as you would if you were washing it.
Soap products are too harsh and could dry the yoga mat out. Do not use them to clean with. There are wipes available that are specifically for cleaning a yoga mat and that do not damage them at all.
Yoga mats become collectors of our hard work and an abundance of our sweat to prove it. Sweat brings germs and germs bring bacteria that can make us sick if not cleaned. That is why it is so important to know how to clean your yoga mat. It is not too difficult and will make holding that pose even more meaningful when you know you are placing your body on a germ free mat.