How to Keep a Yoga Mat Sticky

Cleaning your mat with the right solution helps keep it sticky.

Cleaning your mat with the right solution helps keep it sticky.

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.

Items you will need

  • Spray bottle
  • White vinegar
  • Tea tree or eucalyptus oil
  • Soft cloth
  • Scrub brush
  • Laundry detergent

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About the Author

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.

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