I’ve always thought the best gift is something you can give to someone that they wouldn’t buy for themselves. As a long-time dedicated yoga practitioner, I got the Jade Yoga Harmony mat as a holiday gift one year, and honestly, I’ve never looked back. The best yoga mat is like a great sports referee, improving the athletic experience without you noticing they’re there. For me, the Jade Yoga Harmony Mat is the ideal yoga mat for that very reason. It’s a trusted piece of gear I know will help my practice without getting in the way.
The Harmony Mat is Jade Yoga’s signature mat, often found in studios and the arms of serious yogis. I’m convinced that’s for one major reason: the coveted anti-stick properties central to the Harmony design. The Harmony Mat was created to solve most yogis’ biggest pet peeve, feet and hands slipping on the mat. Jade Yoga specially engineered their mats to have great traction, sticky enough to prevent slippage, without being so tough that yogis get stuck in place.
This mat comes in more than ten colors across the rainbow spectrum and is available in two lengths: 68 inches and 74 inches. It is almost a quarter of an inch thick, so yogis with more sensitive knees might find they don’t have to fold this over for more cushion. This mat is coated with rubber on both sides and reinforced in the middle, making it easily reversible for use on any side. Because of its careful construction, it doesn’t lose pieces or come apart when moisture hits the rubber. Both sides feel exactly the same and–if used without preference for one or the other –can extend the life of the mat. Jade will be my forever yoga mat brand as long as I’m practicing — by all signs still true after fifteen years so far.
There is one small and worth-noting downside to the Harmony yoga mat: It weighs 5 pounds to allow for all that support and cushion. So yes, it essentially could be its own hand weight. It’s best used for a practice based at home or leaving in a cubby at the studio. It doesn’t commute well, which might be more irrelevant these days than before the pandemic but surely significant to some yogis. Also: First-time Jade customers will notice the rubber smell of a new mat. That smell comes from the natural mat materials and it does go away with time.
Mat aside, Jade Yoga is even more special to me as a yogi as given its environmental consciousness. Their mats are made in the U.S. and sourced from eco-friendly natural rubber. For every mat sold, Jade plants a tree through Trees for the Future. The company also does special promotions by donating a small percentage of each mat purchase to charitable causes, depending on the type of mat and its color. As an example, $5 of every Saffron mat goes to autism-related causes and $5 from every teal mat goes to ovarian cancer-related causes.
Their prices are a little more expensive than some of their competitors but, as far as mats go, they come with long-term quality. With good care, I’ve only had to replace this expert mat one time in 10 years. The especially environmentally conscious shopper will appreciate the especially long lifespan alone. When it is time for a new mat, Jade has plenty of suggestions for reusing your old one. Personally, I have kept my old ones to use as additional padding, if needed.
I like this mat so much that I’ve also given it as a gift to my other favorite yogis, most of whom now swear by the brand. And here I can finally admit that I own a total of four Harmony Mats, all in Midnight Blue.
All (Jade) yoga mats considered
One of my favorite aspects of the Jade brand is how many options they offer for yogis of all shapes, sizes and levels. Below are some of the best alternatives in size and price compared to the original Harmony.
This variation on the Harmony Mat comes in XW or ‘extra-wide’ for yogis who want more real estate than the original. The XW is 28 inches wide, 4 inches longer than the other standard mats. It’s also 80 inches in length, 6 inches longer than the longest Harmony yoga mat. It’s a solid mat for those who are extra tall.
The Level 1 mat is perfect for someone who is newer to yoga. It doesn’t come with the hefty price tag. This mat is tailored for beginners with a thinner overall height that is coated in Jade’s ‘scrim’ reinforcement. It looks a bit different from the Harmony in that the ‘scrim’ sits across the bottom of the entire mat where it touches the floor, as opposed to sitting inside two layers of reversible rubber on the Harmony.
For yogis who want a mat they can cram in a bag or take outside, this travel mat is worth considering. This mat has all the great features of the Harmony — the same textured grip and a variety of colors — but it’s made to travel. It’s a thinner, more portable mat that only weighs 3 pounds, compared to the Harmony Mat’s whopping 5 pounds.
The Voyager Mat is just like the Travel Mat but even further slimmed down. For practitioners who want even more portability, this super light mat weighs just 1.5 pounds. And it is super foldable for tucking into a smaller pouch or bag, to boot.