How to Choose the Right Exercise Mat for You

Your Guide to buying the best exercise mat


A good exercise mat is essential for any home fitness routine. Whether you’re looking for a mat for yoga, Pilates, HIIT, or any other form of exercise, having the right mat can make a huge difference in the quality of your workout. In this exercise mat buying guide, we’ll walk you through the important considerations to keep in mind when shopping for an exercise mat, from size and material to price point and extra features. With the help of this guide, you’ll be able to find an exercise mat that fits your needs and budget.

Key features

  1. Material – What material is the exercise mat constructed from? Many popular choices are foam, rubber, and PVC, each with their own pros and cons.
  2. Thickness – How thick is the mat? Thicker mats provide more cushion and support, while thinner mats may be more convenient for travel.
  3. Size – What size is the mat? Larger mats provide more coverage and are ideal for taller people, while smaller mats are more suitable for those with limited space.
  4. Grip – Does the mat provide adequate grip? Mats with a textured or ribbed surface provide more traction during intense workouts.
  5. Durability – How durable is the mat? Look for mats with reinforced edges and high-quality construction to ensure longevity.
  6. Cleaning – How easy is the mat to clean? Some mats are machine washable or can be wiped down easily with a damp cloth.
  7. Price – How much does the mat cost? Exercise mats range in price, so compare options to find the right one for your budget.

See the most popular exercise mat on Amazon

Important considerations


  • Flexibility: Exercise mats are highly flexible and come in a variety of styles, sizes, and colors, making them easy to customize to any workout space.
  • Durability: Exercise mats are designed to be tough and durable, providing a long-lasting mat that can withstand the rigors of intense workouts.
  • Protection: Exercise mats protect hard surfaces from damage caused by heavy equipment or extreme use. They also provide cushioning and support, reducing the risk of strain and fatigue.
  • Versatility: Exercise mats are multifunctional and can be used for many different types of exercises, including stretching, weight training, and yoga.
  • Portability: Exercise mats are lightweight and easy to transport, making them a great choice for travel and outdoor workouts.


  • Cost: Exercise mats can sometimes be expensive and come at a high price.
  • Durability: Exercise mats can be prone to wear and tear, and may not last long if used often.
  • Portability: Exercise mats can be difficult to transport and store due to their large size.
  • Cleanliness: Exercise mats can be hard to keep clean, as sweat and grime can accumulate.
  • Material: Exercise mats are often made from synthetic materials, which may not be comfortable or eco-friendly.

Best alternatives

  1. Yoga Blocks - Firm foam blocks used to help with form and stability during yoga poses.
  2. Exercise Bands - Resistance bands that come in various levels of tension, used for a variety of strength training exercises.
  3. Yoga Strap - A long piece of fabric for stretching, usually with a buckle at one or both ends.
  4. Medicine Balls - A weighted rubber ball used for strengthening exercises.
  5. Kettlebells - A cast iron weight with a handle that is used for exercises such as swings, deadlifts, squats and more.
  6. Foam Roller - A cylindrical foam tube used for myofascial release and other massage techniques.

Related tools, supplies, and accessories

  • Exercise Mat - A thin, padded mat designed to provide cushion when exercising on hard floors.
  • Exercise Ball - A large inflatable ball used to strengthen and tone muscles during exercise.
  • Yoga Blocks - Rigid foam blocks used for supporting and stabilizing yoga poses.
  • Resistance Bands - Elastic bands used to provide resistance for strength training exercises.
  • Foam Roller - A cylindrical foam roller used for stretching and massaging muscles.
  • Free Weights - A variety of dumbbells and barbells used in strength training.

Common questions

  1. What are the different types of exercise mats? Exercise mats, also known as yoga mats, come in various shapes, sizes, and materials. Common types of exercise mats are thin foam mats, sticky mats, synthetic mats, and PVC mats.
  2. What size exercise mat do I need? Exercise mats come in a range of sizes, from small mats for individual use to large mats for group classes or larger spaces. It is important to choose a mat that fits your space and needs.
  3. What material should I look for in an exercise mat? The material of an exercise mat can affect its durability, comfort, and grip. Foam mats offer comfort and cushioning, while sticky mats provide grip and stability. Synthetic mats can be durable and easy to clean, while PVC mats are lightweight and often the most affordable.
  4. How much should I expect to spend on an exercise mat? Exercise mats can range widely in price, from inexpensive mats made of foam to more expensive mats made of synthetic or PVC materials. Generally, higher-quality mats tend to cost more, but shoppers should always consider the size, thickness, and durability of the mat when making their selection.
  5. What is the best way to care for an exercise mat? Different types of exercise mats require different care instructions. For example, foam mats should be kept away from heat, while sticky mats should be wiped down after each use. Synthetic and PVC mats usually require more detailed cleaning instructions, such as wiping the mat down with a damp cloth and mild soap or using a disinfectant spray.


In 2017, a Tasmanian couple had to be rescued by the Coast Guard when a yoga exercise mat managed to blow away and become stuck in a tree on an island off the coast of Tasmania. The couple had been attempting to practice yoga on the beach when a strong gust of wind blew the mat away, sending them into a panic as they attempted to retrieve it. Luckily, the Coast Guard was able to come to their rescue and retrieve the mat, allowing the couple to go back to their peaceful yoga practice. (Source:

Disclaimer: This buying guide was not created by humans, and it is possible that some of it's content is inaccurate or incomplete. We do not guarantee or take any liability for the accuracy of this buying guide. Additionally, the images on this page were generated by AI and may not accurately represent the product that is being discussed. We have tried to convey useful information, but it is our subjective opinion and should not be taken as complete or factual.