I talked in my last post about why we settled on starting our product range with the yoga/fitness mat; I thought it would be good to go into a bit more detail about why it was so important to us to improve the humble fitness mat.
Often overlooked as a key piece of equipment in the gym, the yoga/fitness mat is the first and last thing we grab when we enter then gym, for a proper warm-up and cooling-down session. But for both Toby and me, it was an obvious place to start - we could easily see the improvements that could be made to this product and even then, when we started doing more research into the product, we discovered even more reasons that increased our sense of urgency to improve mats around the world.
Straight to landfill
Most mats you find in the gym are made from plastic and go straight to landfill at the end of their short lives.
Perhaps more shocking is the fact that the material used in the majority of mats on the market today is actually toxic to humans as it degrades and has even been linked to signs of infertility in women. The combination of sweat on, heating and rubbing your mat can actually be harmful to your health as you breathe it in. We found this pretty horrifying to say the least, especially since we use our mats to improve our health and wellbeing.
Saying 'no' to fast-fashion
Thanks to the awareness that is being raised within the fashion industry about the detrimental effects of our culture of 'throwaway fashion', many of us are now thinking twice before making our purchases. Rather than just trying to keep up with the Kardashians, many of us are now taking into consideration key factors such as the longevity and durability of the clothes we wear, as well as questioning the more ethical aspects, such as where are our clothes made and by who?
We know, it's not easy to always be sustainable and make ethical choices, especially as some of our favourite stores are playing catch-up when it comes to the necessity of sustainable living.
Our aim has always been to make it easier for our customers to make the sustainable choice and to help raise awareness. We believe that by enabling people to make better choices and raising awareness about our environment, we can make a real difference.
Choosing the best
We always set out with the aim to make the best and most sustainable yoga mats on the market. This meant that we went through many stages of product testing before settling on the perfect mat. Every stage of the design process was approached with 2 key questions in mind:
1) Is it this most sustainable option? and
2) Does it give the user the best experience possible?
Rather than worry about the cost of the materials, we chose to focus on solely answering these two questions. This is how we approach the development of every one of our products, ensuring that we can truly be the most sustainable business we can be and make products that you will love to use, for many years to come.
Don't buy it
If you already have a yoga mat that is in perfectly good working order, then please don't buy our mats until you really need a new one. Our aim is to prevent landfill, so use your current mat until you absolutely have to buy a new one.
Once you have your perfect Form mat, look after it and make it last as long as you possibly can! On the day it finally does reach the end of it's long life, your can either recycle it, or if you have our new Onyx mats, you can bury it in your garden and let it biodegrade naturally. Keeping the circle of life moving and protecting the future of our planet.
Read next >> The Form Journal - How it all began: Heidi shares her story on how she started Form and the first year of the adventure.