Yes, I followed the “in” crowd and all the cool kids like schools of fish in the ocean and the blue angels into the ground. I did what everyone else was doing when I bought the much loved and equally vilified Manduka PRO Black mat. The yoga must-have of the last three seasons. Anyone who’s anyone in the yoga world has to have a Manduka! So yes, I went and got one, and I have to say that I love it! Well, as much as you can love a yoga mat anyway.
First, although I researched on Manduka’s website, I ended up buying from Amazon. As in most cases, it’s cheaper, more convenient, and returns are hassle-free. I bought the package which included a 71″ black mat and matching graphite colored yoga bag. (You almost have to pony up for the bag, since the mat is too big for a standard sized bag.) The package for the mat and bag was only $114 on Amazon vs. $135 on Manduka’s site.
When it arrived, it was like Christmas! I hadn’t practiced on a real mat in months. My first impressions: it’s f’ing huge and heavy, sort of like the armored tank of yoga mats. But the color was cool, no dippy purple tie dyed bullshit. This is punk rock yoga, baby, right down to the metal divets on the gun metal graphite bag.
Rolling out and using the mat for the first time, it was definitely thick and comfy on my paws but I have to say that it is a bit slippy at first. I read many reviews that alluded to this but I’m going to press on, because I hear that after a couple months of regular use it’s a non-issue
The only real downside is that it’s not eco-friendly, but it definitely seems durable like it could last through nuclear fallout. And the Manduka PRO series guarantees their mats for a lifetime which is really respectable and means they make quality product (not Chinese crap). So, in effect, although it’s not made of recyclable materials, I won’t need to replace it every few years and throw it in a landfill like we do with way too many goods these days.
So far, I’m really pretty darn happy with my mat but please kill me if I ever say “my Manduka” like a name-dropping fool and go on to talk about it like it’s jesus and my best friend rolled into one. Really, only assholes personify inanimate objects. (I’m betting Manduka will not be putting that quote on their site)
My overall rating is 4.4 out of 5 stars.
Pros: quality, durability, comfort, cool factor, lifetime guarantee
Cons: heavy, expensive, not eco-friendly