Besides passing gas or splitting your pants in Downward-Facing Dog, few things are more embarrassing in yoga class than sliding off your mat. A slippery mat can also cause injuries should it cause your front foot for example to slide into hanumanasana -- Monkey pose -- before you're ready, leading to a serious groin pull. You’ll do best with a mat that is inherently sticky and by keeping it clean. Nobody wants wants a slippery, stinky mat full of foot fungus.
Obtain a super-sticky mat to begin with. Look for a recycled rubber version with a good tread on the surface. Rubber mats almost never get slippery.
Mix a solution of 1 part white vinegar to 3 parts water in a spray bottle. Add three to four drops of eucalyptus or tea-tree oil. As an alternative, use mat-cleaning spray.
Spray your mat with the cleaning solution until it's slightly damp, then wipe it down with a soft cloth. For a deeper cleansing, scrub it with a nylon-bristled scrub brush.
Wash an especially stinky, slippery mat on the gentle cycle in the washing machine unless the label warns against it -- eco mats, for example, should not be washed. Set the washing machine on cold water, add 2 tablespoons of mild detergent and take the mat out before the spin cycle. Drape your mat over a clothesline or railing and let it dry in the sun.
S.R. Becker is a certified yoga teacher based in Queens, N.Y. She has a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing and has worked as a writer and editor for more than 15 years. Becker often writes for "Yoga in Astoria," a newsletter about studios throughout New York City.