Yoga Gear

Review: Barefoot Yoga Mat [+Giveaway!]

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While I was waiting for Bear Shark to make his grand entrance, I was gifted a Barefoot Yoga Performance Grip mat to try out. It sat in the packaging for weeks until I escaped from the initial fog of newborn-land, but the last couple weeks, I’ve been taking it to classes and using it at home as I get back into my yoga practice.

I’ve had my Lululemon The Mat for quite a few years now, so that’s become my point of comparison for other mats. The ones we have at home are mostly Gaiam and economical brands found at Target. I wouldn’t call any of those really good for doing more than gentle stretches. But when I got the Barefoot Yoga mat, I could tell by just visual inspection that this isn’t a thin piece of rubber that will end up as another playmat for the kids.

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The Performance Grip mat is a nice hefty yoga mat, weighing in at 5 pounds. It’s considerably lighter than my Lulu mat and not nearly as cumbersome either. It lies really nicely (and flat – no curled up edges) on the ground and creates a solid foundation. It’s also 4 mm thick. I like a good thick mat that gives me some cushion without being squishy. I immediately felt supported standing on it.

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The smooth side of the mat goes on the floor, and the side with the dot texture is what you practice on. I was pleasantly surprised by the texture. It’s pretty subtle, but it gave my toes a little something extra to hold on to.

One important note is that you need to “prep” the mat before using it as there’s a slick factory layer that needs to come off. I did a gentle wipe with a wet cloth the first time and found my feet were slipping in trikonasana or any wide legged stance. I wrote back to the brand representative about it, and she provided additional information.

Most yoga mats incur a thin residue during their production that can feel slippery when first using the mat. This “factory layer” can be wiped off with a wet rag, or will disappear over a breaking in period. This residue will clean off (it has nowhere to go but off!) when cleaning the mat. Please do not use a cleaning solution that is too soapy or the soap may create another slippery residue.

I went back with a different towel that’s much rougher, wetted it and gave it a good rough scrub. That seemed to do the trick.

Barefoot Yoga touts “no toxic emissions” during the manufacturing process, and that makes my little green heart smile. It’s definitely not a smelly mat, which I appreciated. I remember it took a looooong time for the rubber smell on my Lulu one to wear off; it was almost nauseating.

One thing I haven’t been able to test yet is how the Performance Grip Mat does with sweat. The company claims the mat gets grippier with use and is made for hot and vinyasa classes. Until I can work back up to a full ashtanga or vinyasa practice, I can’t say for sure how it’ll fare.

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Overall, I was pretty impressed with this mat. It’s sturdy, and once I scrubbed it a little, my hands and feet had plenty of traction. It retails at $59, which is a great value if you want a thick, heavy duty mat without an overly crazy price tag or the arm workout to lug one around.

So here’s the sweet part of the deal. They gave me a mat to try and review, and they’re giving a lucky winner a mat for free!

To enter, leave a blog post comment with WHAT STYLE OF YOGA YOU PREFER. This one’s mandatory. For extra entries, tweet about the giveaway, Like Finding Drishti on Facebook and follow Finding Drishti & Barefoot Yoga on Twitter. The raffle will go on for a week, and then I’ll pick a winner who will receive a Barefoot Yoga Performance Grip Mat directly from the company.

** Be sure to get credit for your blog comment and social media actions in Rafflecopter below with your email address so I have a way of contacting you if you win! **

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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33 Comments

  1. My favorite yoga is Vinyasa Flow. I love the way it gets my blood pumping and the rhythm of my breathe fits right into a grove. It can be exhausting but I always feel 10 lbs lighter when I get done. Like a huge weight was lifted off of my shoulders.

    • Terri says

      where are you practicing these days? i can try to meet up with you at a class while i’m still on maternity leave!

  2. Anne says

    I’m a vinyasa fan…2 classes a week keeps tension headaches at bay and I’m definitely calmer after an hour of yoga.

    • Terri says

      yes! the headache relief! mold has been super high in austin lately, and i’ve had some nasty sinus headaches that yoga is helping with.

    • Terri says

      i’ve been practicing a lot of freestyle yoga at home these days too. heart openers are my fave right now.

    • Terri says

      Make sure to get credit for this comment by entering your email into Rafflecopter (at the end of the post).

    • Terri says

      Make sure to get credit for this comment by entering your email into Rafflecopter (at the end of the post).

      • Terri says

        i see your entry in the system now. 🙂 good luck!

  3. Michelle says

    I love all yoga! I mostly practice vinyasa and ashtanga, though.

    • Terri says

      Make sure to get credit for this comment by entering your email into Rafflecopter (at the end of the post).

      • Terri says

        i see your entry in the system now. 🙂 good luck!

    • Terri says

      Make sure to get credit for this comment by entering your email into Rafflecopter (at the end of the post).

  4. Laura K says

    I am the “newbiest” of newbies to yoga and don’t really know what type I’m going to like; I am just learning and I’m using beginning yoga dvd’s at home. I started with a heavy weight yoga dvd and yoga for inflexible people; I’ve now moved to a dvd I got from yoga journal (complete guide to home practice) I’d love to take an actual class but sadly there are none in our area. Over the last 3 years I’ve lost a lot of weight (160+) and I believe, along with daily walks, yoga has been a big help. In the least it brings a calmness to my life 🙂

    • Terri says

      congrats on the weight loss! there are so many online yoga classes and videos too.

    • I see your adding this comment “Make sure to get credit for this comment by entering your email into Rafflecopter (at the end of the post).”

      But I don’t see where to do this…. ? How do you enter your email into Rafflecopter?

      • Terri says

        there’s a widget at the end of the post by Rafflecopter. you can either use your Facebook login or just enter your email address.

  5. susie king says

    Vinyasa Flow yoga is fast-paced so I like it best.

    • Terri says

      be sure you entered your email address in the rafflecopter widget so you get credit for your entries.

    • Terri says

      do you prefer heated or room temperature?

Comments are closed.