Recently, the folks over at The Satori Concept reached out to see if I wanted to try out their natural cork yoga mats.
Their timing could not have been better. For about the last six years, I've been using a Jade Harmony mat. I love my Jade mat, but, unfortunately, my dog loved it too– he ended up chewing my prized yoga mat to tatters, so I needed a new one anyway.
Upon receiving my Satori Concept mat, I was excited to put it to the test and write up a review about it. I am not being compensated for this review, nor am I collecting affiliate revenue from it– all that I have accepted from Satori Concept is the mat itself. So, with that disclaimer out of the way, let's dive in and look at the mat's pros and cons.
Satori Concept Cork Yoga Mat
The specific mat that I received is the Om Instruction Cork Yoga mat. This mat is made from sustainably sourced cork materials, and their website claims "no tree is harmed," which is always a bonus when sourcing a yoga mat. The less harm, the better!
This is one reason why cork is quite common in yoga products. Mats, blocks, and wheels can all be made (at least, in part) out of cork. It's a great material for yoga products because of it has a lower environmental impact than some other materials, is easy to clean and care for, and it can be made to be fairly soft.
How Much Cushion Does the Satori Concept Mat Provide?
Speaking of softness, that's one of the things that stood out to me right away with the Satori Concept mat.
Pinching it between my fingers, I could tell that it would provide a decent amount of cushion. I rolled it out onto my floors, which are quite hard, and was able to sit comfortably in a cross-legged position and on all fours. Some thinner mats can be uncomfortable for prolonged use by not providing much cushioning between your pressure points and the floor, but that wasn't an issue with the Satori Concept mat.
It is about the same thickness as my Jade Harmony mat and is comparable in terms of the amount of cushion it provides. In fact, I think it provides a bit more support because of how well the cork surface absorbs impact.
How Well Does the Satori Concept Mat Grip?
A common issue with soft mats is that they aren't great for gripping. Even basic poses like downward dog or moving through a Sun Salutation are easiest to accomplish when there's a decent amount of friction between your mat and your body's points of contact. Otherwise, you'll shift your weight into position and start to slide, preventing you from maintaining proper bodily alignment.
With the Satori Concept mat, I did slide a little bit. To be fair, I'm out of practice and probably wasn't distributing my weight very well, but I like to be transparent, so I'll highlight that the initial grip was fairly average.
On the Satori website, however, the providers do state that their mats grip even better when you're sweaty. While that may sound odd to non-yogis, anyone who does Bikram/ hot yoga or does muscle-intensive Hatha and vinyasa routines will be familiar with working up a sweat and struggling to grip their mat. Given the mat's claims to do even better when you're sweaty (which makes sense since they're cork), that's definitely a bonus.
What Else Should You Know About the Satori Concept Mat?
One detail that didn't escape my notice with the mat was that it has virtually no scent. Obviously, I don't go around huffing yoga mats. But, with rubber mats and foam mats, when you go into reclining positions or resting positions where your face is close to the mat, you often notice a strong odor from the mat's materials. This mat didn't really have a scent at all, so it didn't cause any annoyance or irritation.
It's also really easy to keep clean. My house constantly has dog hair that covers everything, but it wipes off of this mat really easily. The website advises wiping it down with a damp (from water) rag when it needs to be cleaned, which I always prefer over products that recommend an expensive companion cleaner.
Final Thoughts: Would I Recommend This Yoga Mat?
Ultimately, I would definitely recommend the Satori Concept mat. I'd score it an 8/10. In its favor is the fact that it's easy to care for, comfortable, and made out of sustainable materials. The primary draw back is that I didn't grip super well my first time using it, but perhaps that will improve with more use or sweatier workouts.