The Manduka Eko Superlite Travel Yoga Mat
The Globe-Trotting Yogi's Best Friend!
The Manduka Eko Superlite Travel Yoga Mat is a wandering yogi's dream! It comes it right at 2 pounds and measures 68" x 24" x 1.5mm. It's made of non-Amazon harvested natural tree rubber and is produced without using ADO dyes or toxic foaming agents. The manufacturing process makes use of all scrap material resulting in a zero-waste production technique.
The mat does arrive with a somewhat strong rubber smell which fade with usage and washing. This is a small side effect of it's all-natural rubber construction and non-toxic processing. Use one of Manduka's mat spray or make your own with water, a few drops of natural dish soap and a drop or two of your essential oil to combat the odor. It's sticky right out to of the package and there's no break in period to deal with. It's easy to wipe clean with a cloth or sponge and it dries quickly.
This mat isn't really meant to be used directly on concrete or other hard surfaces. I know people who do use it like that, but be prepared to cushion knees or other bony points. At 1.5mm thick it doesn't offer much protection. It does great outside on grass or on carpets but may catch on sticky feet and wrinkle or buckle.
The true beauty of this mat is putting it over rental or loaner mats while visiting a studio class away from home. That way you're not putting your nose directly on a mat that's carrying the ghastly scent of a thousand yogis past. Using the mat this way provides additional cushion and grip, making it less likely to bunch or otherwise become deformed underfoot. Another great thing, although Manduka doesn't advertise this usage, is to experiment with flipping the mat upside down. Some yogis' prefer to use it this way as it is less likely to bunch and they prefer the fabric feel of the bottom side.
It's possible to fold this little gem of a mat every small. It will fit almost anywhere. Squeeze it into the outer pocket of a suitcase or backpack. Heck, I've even pushed it into the large pocket of my winter coats and raincoats. It's extremely compact and lightweight so you can take a yoga mat anywhere.
One warning I'll mention is that this mat is biodegradable, so it won't last forever like some of Maduka's other mats. Avoid storing it in direct sunlight and make sure its able to air dry after sweaty classes or after cleaning the mat else it will begin to break down.
Pros: Very sticky, Made of Natural Rubber, Available in a variety of Colors, Can be folded down very small and taken almost anywhere.
Cons: Thin with little cushion, Smells stongly of rubber on arrival, Biodegradable, Can't be left in direct sunlight