Why Won’t My Yoga Mat Stay Flat?

We are all familiar with that annoying little curl that presents itself when you roll out your mat after it has been in storage for a little while. Yoga is meant to be a relaxing and reinvigorating experience, right? So how can it be when the corners of your mat just won’t stay flat?

Your yoga mat won’t stay flat because it has been rolled up incorrectly or for too long. Most yoga mats are made from a material that remembers its form. If it’s rolled up from one end to the other for a long period of time, it’ll want to stay like that, resulting in the infamous curled edge.

Don’t worry, this usually has nothing to do with the quality of your yoga mat. Fortunately, there are quite a few easy solutions to this pesky problem. I will go over a bit about why your mat curls at the corners, as well as a few remedies to this frustrating problem. Towards the end of the article, I will also share a couple of recommendations for mats that claim they solve this problem.

The Reasons Your Yoga Mat Won’t Stay Flat

We are all aware of that notorious, pesky little curl that a yoga mat gets at the beginning of a session. It is cumbersome and frustrating, especially if you have to stare at it during downward-facing dog.

You may be surprised to learn that there is a right way and a wrong way to roll your yoga mat. If yours is not staying flat, the chances are that you are using the no-so-right way. As I mentioned, the curled corners of your yoga mat do not at all speak to the quality of your mat. So you can rest easy knowing that with a few simple tricks, your mat will be flat as a board.

There are two main culprits for the curled edges of your mat:

Result of the method in which it was rolled

Sometimes, the most obvious way is not always the right way. With a yoga mat, what seems the most obvious is to roll it from one end to the other. Just like you would roll a script or poster before going into a tube. However, this is the precise method that will create curled corners as soon as you unroll it for your next practice.

Stay Flat_Rolled yoga mats

How long it is rolled

Many yoga mat materials are soft and malleable. Their material memory wants to stay in whatever position they are used to being in. This creates stubborn curled edges if your mat has been unused for a while. Generally, the longer it has been rolled up, the more difficult it will be to make it stay flat.

How to Keep Your Yoga Mat Flat

Now that you know why, let’s look at some easy ways to ensure a flat mat. This section will detail a few different options for avoiding that annoying curl.

Consider Different Storage Options

The first option is to store your yoga mat flat. This might be a good option for you if your mat is especially stubborn in maintaining its rolled position. This may be an inconvenience for some who lack the space. Or if you plan on travelling to and from a gym or studio with your mat. However, those of you who are intrigued by the idea should check out Power Systems Mat. It comes equipped with reinforced rings for vertical storage. This should eliminate all issues of mat curling.

Roll Opposite of Your Practice Side

The second option is to roll your mat out on the opposite side from which you practice. This might not be very clear, so I will quickly walk you through what this will look like. After you complete your practice and you are ready to roll your mat, turn it over on the opposite side and begin rolling from one end to the other. Ensure you are practising on the same side every time.

If both sides look the same, mark one side with a dot or your initials to keep track of each side. This will mitigate the curling by forcing your mat to conform to the ground when you lay it opposite of how it was rolled.

A New Way to Roll

This last option is perhaps the favourite method of experienced yogis. This is a popular method because you can still roll the mat quickly and easily. You can also carry it with you in the straps that are typically provided when you purchase a mat. Follow these simple steps to roll it using this method:

  1. Like in the previous option, you should choose which side of the mat you will practice on and which side will be on the floor. Mark it accordingly with your name or something else that will help you identify the top.
  2. With the top side facing up, fold the mat in half, with the shorter ends joining together.
  3. Place the mat in front of you with the folded side closest to you. From the folded side, begin rolling the mat away from you until it is completely rolled up.
  4. Avoid rolling it tightly, as this will leave a crease in the middle of your mat.

Demonstration of How to Keep Your Yoga Mat Flat

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