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Are round yoga mats really a thing? Absolutely! You may not see them in yoga studios often, but folks who do yoga at home sometimes prefer a circular mat over the traditional rectangular style. They like the extra space from side to side that a round mat can provide.
Why would you want a round yoga mat? Where can you find them? Which ones are the best? Let’s answer all of these questions as we examine
Where Did Round Yoga Mats Come From?
We’re not sure who came up with the very first round mat. Maybe it was someone at home without a mat who decided to practice yoga on their round living room rug?
In any case, a handful of companies started manufacturing circular mats in recent years, including Manduka, the brand which we consider to be the gold standard in yoga gear. If Manduka is producing a circular mat, then there is definitely at least a moderate demand for the product!
Most round yoga mats are roughly 6 feet (60 inches) in diameter, although there are some 5-foot mats as well.
What Are the Advantages of a Round Yoga Mat?
It’s actually surprising that it’s taken this long for round yoga mats to start becoming more popular. We’ve all experienced yoga poses that the standard yoga mat size isn’t wide enough for.
Twist, or windshield wiper pose, is one common pose where it feels like half your body is extended off the mat and onto the dirty floor. Every time I’m in this pose I wish I had a wider mat!
The primary advantage of round yoga mats is that they give you the necessary room in all directions to perform any pose and still have room for your entire body on the mat. That’s really nice.
Otherwise, it’s just a matter of personal taste. Some folks pick up a circular mat simply because they like the look of the round shape.
The Best Round Yoga Mats
As we’ve mentioned, there are only a handful of round yoga mats on the market as of this writing. We’re not going to include them all on this list just for the sake of including them.
Instead, we’re picking out the three that stand above the rest, and focusing on those. Here are the top three circular mats we’ve seen so far!
Best Round Yoga Mat: Manduka eQua eKO Round Mat
The Manduka eQua eKO Round Mat earns our top marks due to the reputation of the brand, the high quality of the materials, the beautiful print designs, and the solid level of traction and grip.
This product is only 3 mm thick, which is on the thin side. It’s similar to many of the top travel mats, since it’s so lightweight. If that’s not enough cushioning for you, consider picking up a bolster or yoga blanket for additional comfort.
That said, like all Manduka products, this mat is durable and should last for years. That makes it worth the higher price tag. It’s made from microfiber, and Manduka recommends lightly misting the mat before use for maximum traction.
The eQua eKO comes in two attractive designs: Luna Night, a gray-blue cloud swirl; and Luna Sunrise, a pink-purple-orange spectrum with crescent moons.
Manduka’s eKO brand also makes one of our recommended travel mats, and one of the best mats for hot yoga.
Thickest Round Mat: Schriner Pro Large Round Yoga Mat
Do you prefer thicker yoga mats? The Schriner Pro Large Round Yoga Mat measures in with a thickness of 1/3 inch, or more than 8 mm. That’s more than twice as thick as the Manduka eQua eKO.
The Schriner circular yoga mat is a bit more affordable than the Manduka as well, so that may factor into your decision. They offer a lifetime guarantee. And like Manduka, Schriner makes its mats from non-toxic, eco-friendly materials.
Schriner’s mat is 6 feet in diameter and 10 pounds in weight. It comes in one color, solid black. It’s no-frills but it gets the job done. And it’s ideal for the many folks who want a nice, thick mat.
Best Medium-Thickness Mat: Sisyama Circle Yoga Mat
Right between the Manduka and Schriner mats in terms of thickness is the Sisyama Circle Yoga Mat. It’s just over 5 mm thick, a good balance between being lightweight and being thick enough to provide comfort.
The mat is plain black and features the embossed Tai-Chi symbol. Sisyama markets the mat for yoga, tai-chi, pilates, and meditation. It gets solid reviews from users, and it’s the most affordable of the three products on our list.
One possible issue with the Sisyama Circle Yoga Mat is that users report that it can get slippery when you sweat. You can combat this by picking up a yoga towel to place on top of the mat, or misting it with water before practice.
Circular Yoga Mats FAQs
How do you fold a round yoga mat?
Great question! It depends on the thickness. For thin mats like the Manduka eQua eKO, you simply fold it twice, making it one-quarter the original size. At that point you can easily hold in with one hand.
Here’s what the Manduka eKo Round Mat looks like when you fold it like that:
For thicker mats like the Schriner, you would roll it up, the way you’d roll up a traditional rectangular mat. The rolled-up mat will be a bit longer than you’re used to, so definitely pick up a carrying strap so you can cinch it tightly.
Can I take a round mat to my yoga studio?
You’d have to check with your individual studio. Several users have reported that they took their round mats to the studio with no problems.
I’d imagine that most studios would be fine with it, unless your class is super crowded. Round mats do take up more space than standard ones, so folks in a full room could object to someone taking up extra space.
What other yoga gear might I want with a round yoga mat?
You’d probably want the same yoga props that you’d want with any type of mat. Bolster cushions and cork blocks are always a great place to start, since they provide stability and cushioning for a number of poses.
Some users report that these round mats don’t have the greatest level of grip and traction. If that’s the case, pick up a yoga towel to place on top of the mat for additional traction. Or, consider yoga gloves and socks, which provide support and grip.
See also our list of some of the most creative yoga gift ideas!