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Eco Yoga Mat Choices and Creative Recycling

Certified yoga instructor Isabella Samovsky of Solay Wellness in Skokie, Illinois solves some confusion over the appropriate eco mat for the right yoga practice.

The cotton mats her company offers are mostly for hatha yoga exercises, yet also good for therapy, meditation and floor classes that don’t require too much flow. Isabella says a cotton mat can be used by itself and is perfect for the shavasana (also known as corpse or savasana) pose. It rolls up nicely for storage and travel. It’s also a good size for mom and baby together.

Isabella’s hatha mat is made with an unbleached, chemical-free cotton shell. It is stuffed with pure, natural, untreated cotton batting and is hand tufted. Yet other yoga styles require a sticky mat.

For practices like vinyasa, ashtanga and bikram, only a sticky mat can offer grip and slide resistance for good traction of hands and feet. Advanced students like a thinner mat for easier balancing while beginners and seniors like a thicker sticky mat with more cushion to support for their wrists and feet.

Isabella’s choice sticky mat is made from natural rubber, — not PVC. Both individual buyers and retailers may contact Isabella for either cotton or sticky green mats.

Past and present yogis can get creative when it comes to recycling. Whether green or PVC mats, there are numerous ways to ease landfill burdens. Pad area rugs, furniture, appliances, china shelves, and more. I know a caterer who carries her old mat to gigs. It comforts her feet on concrete floors.

Form and Fauna creates beautiful shoes from sustainable materials. They utilize recycled yoga mats for their insoles and lining. Another company, OlovesM, produces eco-sensational bags in all shapes and sizes from recycled mats.

Wow, think of the possibilities! Comments of recycled creative uses for homes, designing and manufacturing are invited.

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Written by Delia Montgomery

I am Delia, d/b/a Chic Eco on www.ChicEco.com, and established myself as an eco fashion guru by learning "who makes what in the world of environmental fashion and design."

Enjoy reading some of my freelance writing about environmental design, fashion and art -- from both consumer and supplier perspectives. You may notice I focus most on individual eco designers, movers and shakers.

From sustainable fashion apparel to paint and flooring, discoveries are a rush. I get my kicks this way. I also offer sales representation of earth-friendly designed products for wholesale buyers. Retailers may take advantage of my services with factory-direct pricing. Spend less time sourcing and prevent green-washed purchases!

My other forte is connecting suppliers with business-to-business tools. Aspects of my business vary with consulting services while I'm proud to be the aide that embraces unique and innovative gigs.

I'm originally a Kentucky Blue Grass gal who relocated to Maui early 2006 and the tropical Puna District of Big Island, Hawaii late 2007. Walk the talk is my motto here.

Early 2009 I constructed a yurt home office in a semi-urban setting on a tiny lot. My water comes from the sky, contained in a catchment that's not likely to dry in this rain forest. The electric is designed for solar conversion. I grow about 30% of my food organically, compost, and recycle to the hilt. Permaculture with a full eco system is my gardening style.

In fact, gardening is my ultimate joy. I seek gigs like design, weeding and planting between other jobs. My love is Hawai'i which has more climate zones than any state. There are frequent earthquakes here, typically under a 3.0 magnitude, and I happen to dig the vibrations. It's a wonderful simple life in paradise. As I grow older and wiser, I become more and more grateful.

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