Over the years, I've tried out tons of yoga mats. As a health and wellness writer and editor who regularly practices yoga and Pilates, I've had the chance to test out dozens of mats, including ones from well-known and widely trusted brands — Lululemon, Manduka, Gaiam — as well as upstarts like Gurus, a brand that makes yoga mats out of sustainable cork. Long story short, for a yoga mat to truly surprise or excite me anymore, it takes a lot. But I recently found one that actually really did shock me: the Backslash Fit Smart Mat.
This mat has a lot going for it, but I'll get to that later. For now, you have to see it ROLL ITSELF UP:
Turns out this mat uses an internal locking mechanism to force it back into the rolled-up position within a few seconds — similar to the way a snap bracelet works.
A self-rolling yoga mat is kind of gimmicky. But the Backslash Fit mat also boasts other features that make it worth buying:
It's super thick and cushy.
At the ripe old age of 33, I've been blessed with premature osteoarthritis in both my hips (hence my enthusiasm for low-impact workouts like yoga and Pilates). In Pilates in particular, the side-lying series can leave me spending more time scrambling for a position that doesn't irritate my sensitive joints than actually performing the strength moves. This mat, though, is 5 millimeters thick, giving it much more cushion than most mats on the market. It's like lying on a cloud.
It's grippy enough to withstand sweaty classes.
Recently, I signed up for what I thought was a regular Vinyasa yoga class — but it turned out to be in a room heated up to 90 degrees Fahrenheit. I typically steer clear of hot yoga because I sweat buckets and wind up slipping and sliding all over my mat. With the Backslash Fit mat, though, I managed to make it through the class without having to adjust my grip at all. Weirdly, it seemed to get gripper the more I sweaty I got.
It comes with an Alexa skill.
This mat pairs with Amazon Alexa, so you can listen to your daily flow from our friends at Women's Health with just a simple voice command.
Where to buy it.
This yoga mat is available at Amazon.com for $89.99.