Believe it or not, a yogi can become very sweaty during a yoga practice, especially during Ashtanga Yoga, which is also known as Power Yoga.
For those who sweat a little or a lot, many choose to put a yoga towel on top of their mats for sweat absorption and an increased grip.
But after practicing for some time, I’ve come to realize that there seems to be a significant difference between yoga towels, and what is called Mysore rugs.
Mysore rugs are usually made out of cotton and are actually from India. These rugs tend to be heavier and can sometimes be a little rough to the touch.
Many yoga towels are made of cotton or microfiber. Some are very soft and plush-feeling, which may be more appealing to women.
However, for those who sweat a lot, a Mysore rug may be a better option as they are less likely to move during a rigorous practice involving a lot of jumps during vinyasas.
Basically, some yoga towels are rather thin and lightweight, which is appealing for someone who wants to be able to transport it easily, but being lightweight means that the yogi must be light on his or her feet when practicing. Otherwise, the yoga towel will most likely bunch up and move out of place, which can be annoying and really slow a practice down.
Because the Mysore rugs are a little bit heavier, they tend not to bunch up or move. For a beginner yogi who sweats a lot, the heaviness of the rug may be an advantage as it is highly likely that he or she is not quite so nimble yet.
Furthermore, using a yoga towel or rug protects the mat from getting dirty. Instead of having to clean the mat, the towel or rug can be washed instead. Usually it is okay for a towel or rug to be put in the washing machine on a delicate cycle. While it is still a good idea to clean one’s mat, a yogi will not have to clean it that often if using a towel or rug.
Many different brands make towels and rugs. Manduka makes a yoga towel called the eQua Mat Towel, which is priced at $42.
Manduka also makes a Mysore rug called the Shama Yoga Rug, priced at $45, but it is only available in two colors and one design.
A company called Barefoot Yoga makes Mysore rugs with a variety of colors and styles, ranging from about $38 to $52.
So, no matter one’s preference, yoga towels and Mysore rugs are both great options for absorbing sweat and increasing one’s grip when practicing yoga.