Manduka Black Mat PRO Review Yoga Mat

A yoga mat that lasts nine years (and counting) is worth writing about. Back in 2012 I was looking for a new yoga mat, specifically a thick yoga mat that would be gentle on my knees and joints. In this Manduka Black Mat PRO review I’ll share why a $100 yoga mat is completely worth the investment.

Prior to owning the Manduka Black Mat PRO, I had heard of the mat through other bloggers and from seeing other yogis practice using this mat at the studio. I knew that if I were going to upgrade soon it would be this mat.

Manduka Black Mat PRO

Manduka Black Mat PRO

About the Manduka Black Mat PRO

I had heard rave reviews about this mat, and even heard the Manduka Black Mat PRO described as the best yoga mat out there, even with a lifetime guarantee to back it up. This particular mat is a best-seller, although Manduka also produces thinner mats, travel mats and various yoga accessories.

Many yoga studios sell Manduka products, and they can be purchased online. Additionally, the Black Mat PRO has “unmatched” cushion and quality – again that was a huge selling point for me I was hard-pressed to find any other yoga mat this thick and supportive! The Manduka PRO is 6mm thick.

The Black Mat PRO celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2017 so that means this mat has held true over the test of time for many yogas and remains incredibly popular since its introduction in 1997.

Related blog posts:
• Price of Zen Save Money on Yoga Classes
• How Clean is Your Yoga Mat?
• Lucy Activewear Review Workout Clothing
• 4 Essential Yoga Items That Will Improve Your Practice

Thick Yoga Mat

Manduka Black Mat PRO
More About Manduka PRO Mat

Over the years it does appear that Manduka has slightly changed the name of this mat, they now call it the Manduka PRO Yoga Mat. In addition you can now purchase this mat in multiple colors! Back in 2012 it was only available in black. You can select from:

  • Original Black (this is what I have)
  • Purple
  • Green
  • Red
  • Blue
  • Teal Stripes (I could see myself buying this color!)
  • Brown

When I purchased this yoga mat, another big selling point was it’s size. It is larger than average yoga mats. Now I’m a petite person but the idea of having a little more space sounded great. Today you can buy the Manduka Black Mat PRO in the standard 71-inch length or the tall length of 85-inches.

The Manduka Black Mat PRO features performance grip texture, a non-slip texture basically to help you grip the mat and hold each pose. In addition it features closed-cell construction which means it’s difficult for bacterial to enter or build up in the mat and it makes cleaning the mat really easy.

Yoga Mat Function

The biggest shock for me was this mat weighs a whopping seven pounds! I have to be careful not to knock anyone over when I throw my mat sling over my shoulder. I wouldn’t recommend this size and weight of mat for anyone who is a commuter or wants a travel mat.

However, for those attending regular practice at their local studio — it’s worth lugging along. The mat I selected is 1/4 inch thick, providing extra cushioning for joints. Thinking about my practice long-term the extra thickness is well worth it.

The Black Mat PRO comes in standard and long lengths. I selected standard, which at 71 inches long is still about two inches longer than my previous yoga mat, and a bit wider. Even though I am petite, with the extra space I haven’t found myself wandering from my mat as much as usual.

Manduka Yoga Mat Review

Manduka Black Mat PRO

Yoga Mat Quality

Only time will truly tell on how long this yoga mat will last, but with the lifetime guarantee, it’s hard to go wrong. The material feels more than durable to me. It’s comforting to find a mat that is promised to last the lifetime of my practice.

Breaking in Your Manduka Black Mat

Personally, I just started practicing with my mat. I didn’t notice any significant break in period but it’s been nine years now so all I can really say for sure is the mat is in great shape and not showing significant wear. Manduka says you can try a simple salt scrub on your Manduka mat to break it in faster if you desire. In order to do this you will need:

Sprinkle the salt on the mat and let it sit or scrub in a circular motion. Let the salt sit for 24-hours. Wipe the salt off using a damp cloth. Then repeat this process two to three times as needed.

Cleaning the Manduka PRO Mat

Cleaning the Manduka Black Mat PRO is easy. I have used Clorox wipes, yoga wipes or even yoga cleaning spray. Manduka makes their own spray (the Manduka’s All-Purpose Mat Wash) if you are interested in that.

All have worked well for me. I clean the side I practice on, the bottom and then let the mat air out a bit before rolling it back up.

Manduka does advise against submerging this mat in water as it can break down the mat and ruin the lifetime guarantee. I wrote a full post about how to clean your yoga mat and the importance of cleaning your mat.

Manduka Yoga Mat

Manduka Black Mat PRO

Here are Some Cons

I mentioned the size of this mat being larger than normal, well along with that this mat is heavy at 7.5 pounds for the standard size. This is not a good mat if you are biking to yoga class or walking a long distance.

I live in a suburban area where I drive to class and only have to walk a short distance into the studio. Literally this mat is big and heavy like you could possibly use it as a self defense weapon!

That being said, I’ve always felt like it’s not so heavy to be a complete burden and I figure I’m getting a little extra workout by carrying the mat – and the tradeoff for comfort during practice is worth it – for me.

Not ready to commit to carry around 7.5 pounds of yoga mat? Manduka offers several high-quality thinner models for your consideration including:

Initially I had to adjust to how I store my yoga mat. For this mat you need to roll it up one way and then secure it with a strap. In the past I had thin yoga mats and would fold them in half, then roll them up so that I always had a top side to practice on and a bottom side facing the ground.

You cannot do this with the Black Mat PRO. Lastly, the only other negative I have experienced with this yoga mat is the Manduka logo is coming off. Mine is older so the logos were a cloth “sticker” placed on the upper corner of the mat.

My sticker is still affixed but I have to be really careful when I practice and clean my mat not to peel the sticker. I have seen other yogi’s with this mat and their stickers have come off. Manduka thankfully has fixed this issue so if you buy this mat today the logo is printed directly on the mat.

Manduka Black Mat PRO

What if You Sweat a Lot?

As with any yoga mat, a popular question is how well does the mat hold up if you sweat a lot? I primarily practice heated vinyasa yoga. For me the mat does fine for these classes. I like using a small hand towel for extra grip and to wipe the mat.

When I took Bikram yoga I needed something a little stronger so I used a towel to cover the entire mat. This could also be helpful if you sweat more during regular classes. If you buy a towel to cover the mat just be sure it fits your Manduka Black Mat PRO because of the larger size of this mat. Some yoga mat towel options include:

How Much Does the Yoga Mat Cost?

The retail price of the Manduka Black Mat PRO yoga mat has varies depending on which exact mat you buy. For example if you select a specialty model or pattern it may cost more.

The yoga mat remains under a 5-star Review on the Manduka Website based on nearly 900 reviews. Back in 2012 the mat cost just under $100. I know the price can be a bit of sticker shock.

I’m a frugal person and talk about tactics to save money on my blog. However, I also believe in buying high-quality items that will last, especially when it comes to items I know I will use frequently and for a long time. If you decide to purchase the mat and want to ease the burden fo the price, consider budgeting for the mat over a few months time.

Manduka PRO Review

Manduka Black Mat PRO

Overall Thoughts

As I’ve shared, I’ve now been using the Manduka Black Mat PRO yoga mat for nine years. I have practiced as frequently as three to five times a week using this mat or as infrequently as once a week. I have used the mat at multiple studios and at home.

I’ve hauled it in my car as far as downtown. Really the mat has stood the test of time for me. It remains comfortable and supportive.

The initial investment, I admit, seems high but if you think about how often you practice, over time the cost is easily broken down. Additionally, I do not think a price can be put on the additional support this mat provides your joints and body.

Do you have a pricey yoga mat? A toss in your car mat? Or both?

20 thoughts on “Manduka Black Mat PRO Review Yoga Mat”

  1. Recently have been going to hot yoga and tried the Manduka- love it and will buy one! I really like the limited edition pro on the site in black royale- it looks purple- my fave!

  2. I’ve always wanted a Manduka mat. I learned the Pro is high density, which gives better joint support.

  3. Joyology – lol! I love the silliness and joy Manduka combines with the explanation of their tech. I am learning they have an awesome sense of humor.

  4. I have lusting after the PRO for quite some time! I need a thicker mat that will be easier on my joints, especially my bum knee.

  5. I have a cheap-o mat from Marshalls, but I actually looked at Manduka when I was in the market for a Mat Towel for hot classes. Ended up with a yogi-toes because Inner Bliss sells them and I am an instant gratification person. However, I like that Manduka promotes green products. Which is why they give you that super awesome lifetime guarantee and reduces mats in the landfills and over all consumption. I like that the eKO mat is actually made of natural rubber with toxins removed. I would buy this mat anyway!

    Thanks for the review!

  6. I love Manduka’s mission that encompasses love, unity, sustainability and joy. What a fantastic company! I have only heard positive things about this company and their mats.

  7. I love that Manduka is a company built by and for yoga teachers and their students, and I’d love to have the ProLite mat in pink!!!

  8. I’ve read a lot of great things about Manduka but am too cheap to fork over the $. I just bought a thicker mat bc I like the extra cushion for my wrists.

    I didn’t know they made towels too (learned on website)… I will have to look into those as I always use a yoga towel bc I hate sliding around and sweat like a mofo in hot yoga.

  9. I already have one of these mats, I just wanted to compound on how great the mat is! It’s heavy, but well worth the weight (pun intended). Especially for those low lunge poses that have you weight bearing on your knee, it alleviates a lot of the discomfort you usually get from a thinner mat. If you have any kind of regular yoga practice, this mat is well worth the money.

  10. This one would be perfect! I went to their site and also learned about all the other yoga accessories they have! One of their towels would also come in very handy for me!!!

  11. I like the Jo-Sha Wipes. I have a few mats that I use for Yoga and strength training/stretching at home. They are not as clean as I would like for something that I sweat all over and can probably use a cleaning.

  12. I have been wanting a manduka black mat pro for so long! I already have two mats at home that I use for stretching (but wouldn’t take to class)–and since I haven’t found a independent yoga studio to take classes at–I couldn’t justify purchasing one. But I do have a living social coupon for 10 hot yoga classes–so I know I do need to invest in one! I’ve heard so many good things about this mat!

Comments are closed.