How to Carry a Yoga Mat


Admit it, you’ve thought about it haven’t you? Whether there is a right or wrong way to carry your yoga mat. Don’t worry I’m sure you are not alone in this. You were worried about carrying it in a way that emits zen and doesn’t encroach on your calm nature. What they don’t tell you is that having the mat in the first place is probably the only stressful part.

So… How do you carry a yoga mat?

The answer, normally, with difficulty. How many times have you carried your mat around with you and had it unravel at the most ridiculous moment, paying for shopping or while you’re carrying a hot coffee after a class. Frustrating to say the least.

Accessories to Help You

A Yoga Mat Band.
A tidy and effective set of bands that will help keep your mat rolled firmly in place. This is a great starting point to making things easier for yourself. If you don’t want to buy specific ones, you could make your own with some material and elastic. Or if you like something a bit more unique you could get some nice ribbon or ties to tie it up. Whatever is best for you.

The Yoga Mat Strap.
This cheap and cheerful solution has loops whereby you slip over the ends of the yoga mat and simply pull tight to keep it in place. They only cost about $5 so it won’t break the bank and it will help you carry around the very intrusive tube you’ve been trying to balance. The draw backs to this though is that it still has the potential to slip out and you may still have the odd problem in the supermarket queue. It will give you both hands back though.

Premium Mat Straps.
They come in an array of different designs (some match the design set of a mat, towel etc) so you don’t have to compromise on style. The straps are better quality and generally do a better job but will cost you 3 times the amount of the basic strap above. Manduka for example produce some really lovely straps to compliment their yoga mats.

Yoga Mat Bags.
Now here’s more of a game changer. As suggested, the yoga mat once rolled is popped into the bag and then you can wear it with the strap as you like. Some even have little pockets to put your keys or phone in, so you don’t have to carry around a purse at the same time, especially if you like going lite.

A Kit Bag.
These are a shade of huge and will fit everything in them, the mat and all. So expect it to be like a holdall but with more charisma. It’s yoga meets Mary Poppins.

How to Carry the Mat

Without an accessory, under the arm.
You’ve rolled it and maybe strapped it, it’s a bit of a time bomb and may unravel at any time. But you carry about your business nevertheless. So you start off by carrying it under your arm, it stays there by pressure between your arm and side. Eventually though you tire or it just slips and you find yourself repeatedly putting it back up there.

The rifle.
You’ve given up with under the arm and now you’re holding the bottom in your palm and pressing it on your shoulder. This too wares off after a while and you are back to square one.

The two hander.
Now you’ve got your hands full completely. If it wasn’t bad enough before when you only had one hand, now you are stuck.

With a mat strap.
now you have more choice and more hands. Pop it over your shoulder to carry it under your arm without the stress of dropping it. Be warned though it still has a mind of its own and will swing anywhere given the opportunity. For more control tap into your inner warrior and wear it across your back as if you were to gracefully pull an arrow from it. This gives you proper control over this unruly PVC child. Some yogis have been seen carrying them like a handbag, by tightening the strap but surely the object is to have your hands free?

The kit bag will undoubtedly fit everything you need in it, it will also zap all your energy and give you a work out from carrying it.

Consider this! Different yoga mats will have different weights and how you carry them will depend on this. You won’t want a really thick heavy mat swinging from your shoulder while you navigate the busy streets.

Say no to split coffee and yoga mat casualties, join the movement and consider getting something to lessen the stress of well… going to yoga to lessen your stress!

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