Yoga Mats VS Exercise Mats, And What Is The Difference Between Them


Whether it is yoga or exercise, the final objective is being fit by both body and mind both. For that we do need certain equipment, to exercise or do yoga. Mat is the universal thing needed in both of these. But did you know that yoga mats and exercise mats both are different from each other.

All kinds of mats basically have different purposes and it is beneficial to understand which mat to choose for your yoga and exercise so your workouts can be effective, better and what purpose they serve. Mats are ideally used for support, balance, and the cushion that helps to do our workouts comfortably. Same way different mats are used for different purposes and support.

To understand more about which or what type of mat you need to choose, we will be explaining it today in our blog so keep reading…


Yoga Mat

While Both might resemble each other in look and length, yoga mats are different from exercise mats in different ways. How thin the yoga mat is, gives yogis enough cushion to still be able to feel the floor while practicing yoga without feeling any pain associated with just using the floor. Yoga mats are essential for their own yoga and meditation purpose. They give you the amount of comfort that is necessary and they provide support and cushioning for the user.

Exercise Mat

Exercising mats are basically used for general fitness activities. When using an exercise mat it can also prevent you from injuries that may occur from exercising on a hard floor. The thickness of the mat protects your body as well as the floor and is ideal for floor-based workouts and body-weight exercises. Protecting your floor when you are lifting weights is almost as important as protecting your body.

Difference between the both

You might be wondering if there are actually any significant differences between the two or not right? To answer this, yes they both have differences and are both different in material, thickness and density wise.

Exercise mats are usually thicker compared to yoga mats, as they are used for general to high workout fitness activities. Exercise mats have a thickness of anywhere between 3-6 inches while yoga mats are less than one inch.

Exercise mats have extra cushioning than the yoga mats, the thickness of the mat protects your body and is great for floor-based and body-weight exercises. The cushioning also helps to give comfort and balance at the same time. The thicker design of an exercise mat absorbs more of the shock that comes from slipping, falling, and jumping.

Exercise mats are commonly used in other general exercise practices such as gymnastics, martial arts, and other training. Therefore also known as gym mats.

Yoga mats are generally designed for low impact exercises, then the exercise mats.

Yoga mats tend to be thinner and maybe less firm compared to exercise mats as the intensity while doing yoga is much less.

Yoga mats focus more on the non-slip grip formula while exercising mats can vary in comfortability, thickness, and moisture resistance.

When choosing a yoga mat, there are a variety of different materials to choose from. Yoga mats made with PVC material are preferred by some because it offers the right level of stickiness and a slightly softer texture.


Exercise mats or yoga mats it all completely depend on you, For example, if you are someone who is into yoga much more than go for yoga mats. If you’re into exercise and fitness, you should go for exercise mats. Everything depends on your preference of choice. Both are great for particular workouts, and understanding which to choose according to your needs is essential

If you are someone into both exercise and yoga, you can have both separate mats for your yoga and exercise, or you can go for exercise mats if yoga is your second preference as the thickness and fitness could benefit for both sessions, but importantly if you can have separate ones that would be most essential.

Can Yoga Mats be Used for Exercise

Yes, people do use yoga mats for exercises but one needs to remember they aren’t ideally made for exercise they are made for yoga, since yoga is a low-intensity activity you cannot perform high-intensity exercises on it.

You can perform a few types of floor exercises that can be practiced on a yoga mat like crunches, sit-ups, push-ups, planks, mountain climbers, back extension and all other low-intensity floor exercises

You cannot perform activities like gymnastics and martial arts or heavy intensity exercises on a yoga mat. Mainly for exercise, it is best to use thick mats so it is better to use exercise mats for exercise purposes.

The type of activity you are into will determine if it can profit you or fail you so choose what serves your purpose

Can Exercise Mats be used for Yoga

As explained above, a similar applies here. One can use exercise mats for yoga but ideally, they would be much benefited if they use a yoga mat to serve the purpose of yoga.

As you see yoga mats are thinner than exercise mats, because of thickness one might not be able to have enough support due to much cushioning as the padding would not let you have the right balance while performing yoga on an exercise mat. Temporary you might use an exercise mat for yoga but not in the long run.

So, it is best to use Exercise mats for exercise and yoga mats for yoga, as they will benefit you in the long run.


There are many types of Mats available in the market serving different purposes according to different needs and In the end, what type of mats you need depends on what you actually do or what kind of activity you need to practice. You can find the mats easily anywhere and online as well. So having the right knowledge will help you to get more out of any of your activities.

Hope this post has helped you to make the right choices and understand more about yoga and exercise mats.

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