Which Yoga Mat Is Good for Jiu Jitsu? 7 Astounding Facts You Should Know Before Making Your Choice

Which Yoga Mat Is Good for Jiu Jitsu
Which Yoga Mat Is Good for Jiu Jitsu

Dive into the intriguing connection between yoga and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Discover Which Yoga Mat Is Good for Jiu Jitsu game, and unravel the shared principles of balance, flexibility, and mental composure in both disciplines.

Have you ever wondered, Which yoga mat is good for jiu jitsu? For those who love twisting their opponents on the mats during an intense BJJ session, this is not a random query. It’s about merging two powerful disciplines – yoga and jiu-jitsu – to maximize performance. Ready to join us on this wild ride? Let’s roll!

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1. The Overlapping World of Yoga and Jiu-Jitsu

Many who aren’t embedded in the martial arts community may be surprised by the increasing intersection between the tranquil world of yoga and the dynamic realm of jiu-jitsu. It’s a pairing that might seem like oil and water at first glance, but the confluence runs deep and for a multitude of reasons.

  1. Ancient Philosophies: Both yoga and jiu-jitsu have roots in ancient practices that emphasize mind-body connection. Yoga originates from the Indian subcontinent, emphasizing spiritual growth, meditation, and physical postures. Jiu-jitsu, stemming from Japanese martial arts and later adapted in Brazil, puts forth a philosophy of yielding or using the opponent’s force against themselves rather than confronting it with opposing force.
  2. Physical Demands: At their core, both yoga and jiu-jitsu require significant control over one’s body. Yoga emphasizes flexibility, balance, and strength in various poses. Similarly, jiu-jitsu practitioners need flexibility to escape holds, balance to maintain or change positions, and strength in applying techniques. Many jiu-jitsu athletes have reported that incorporating yoga into their routine has led to improved performance, reduced injuries, and better breath control during matches.
  3. Mental Strength: Beyond the physical, there’s an undeniable mental component. Yoga and meditation are known for their focus on mindfulness, presence, and mental discipline. In jiu-jitsu, mental composure is crucial, especially when caught in a compromising position or when strategizing against an opponent. The mindfulness cultivated in yoga can train athletes to remain calm under pressure and think clearly during intense scrambles.

2. Jiu-Jitsu Mats vs. Yoga Mats: The Battle of the Surfaces

While both mats serve to provide a cushioned surface for their respective practices, their design and material characteristics differ significantly, given the distinct demands of each discipline.

Jiu-Jitsu Mats:

  • Density and Thickness: Jiu-jitsu mats are often thicker than yoga mats. This is to provide adequate cushioning for falls, takedowns, and rolls. High-quality jiu-jitsu mats, like the Fuji Smooth Series Mats, incorporate multi-density foam to absorb shock and prevent injuries2.
  • Surface Texture: These mats usually have a textured surface to prevent slips, especially when the mat becomes sweaty during intense training sessions. The texture also allows for better grip when moving around.
  • Size and Portability: Jiu-jitsu mats are often larger, especially those designed for dojos or training centers. Some can be interlocked like puzzle pieces, while others might be rollouts or foldables, depending on the training space’s needs2.

Yoga Mats:

  • Thickness: Yoga mats tend to be thinner than jiu-jitsu mats, generally ranging from 3mm to 6mm. This ensures practitioners can maintain balance and feel connected to the ground, crucial for poses that require stability3.
  • Surface Texture: Yoga mats prioritize grip. Whether the practitioner is dry or sweaty, the mat must prevent slipping. Hence, mats like the Yoga Mat Grip+ 3 mm V2 emphasize a strong grip, sweat absorption, and alignment markings3.
  • Portability: Given that many people take their yoga mats to studios, parks, or travel with them, they’re designed to be lightweight and easily rolled or folded.

3. The Power Trio: Puzzle, Rollout, and Folding Mats

In the world of jiu-jitsu, choosing the right mat isn’t just about the surface; it’s about understanding the structure and functionality of each mat type. Let’s unpack the three primary jiu-jitsu mat types.

  • Puzzle Mats: These are akin to the jigsaw puzzles you might have played with as a child, but much larger. Made of EVA foam, they interlock seamlessly, ensuring a consistent surface area without any gaps. They offer easy customization and can be tailored to fit any training space. The main benefit here is adaptability. If you have a room of an odd shape or need to adjust the training area size, these mats are perfect. However, they might not be as cushioned as some would prefer for ground-based jiu-jitsu maneuvers.
  • Rollout Mats: Think of these as a massive yoga mat but designed explicitly for martial arts. Made of durable vinyl over foam, these mats can be rolled out flat and then rolled back up for storage. They are incredibly portable and can be transported with ease, making them perfect for those without a dedicated jiu-jitsu training space. However, they might be slightly thinner compared to other mat types.
  • Folding Mats: These mats offer the best of both worlds. They provide excellent cushioning and can be folded up when not in use. Typically constructed from panels of foam covered in vinyl, they’re excellent for makeshift training spaces. They are especially handy if you’re traveling or want to set up a quick training session outdoors.

When considering a yoga mat for jiu-jitsu, think about the adaptability of puzzle mats, the portability of rollout mats, and the cushioning of folding mats. The ideal yoga mat should offer a blend of these features while ensuring durability for the rigors of jiu-jitsu.

4. The Great Thickness Debate in Choosing Which Yoga Mat Is Good for Jiu Jitsu

Thickness is pivotal when selecting a mat for any physical activity. In the realm of jiu-jitsu and yoga, thickness can affect your performance, safety, and comfort.

  • Why Thickness Matters in Jiu-Jitsu: Jiu-jitsu is a ground-based martial art. When practicing techniques or sparring, you’ll frequently be thrown, swept, or find yourself rolling on the mat. The thickness of your mat can be the difference between a safe fall and an injury. Too thin, and you risk bruises or worse. Too thick, and it might become challenging to move swiftly and perform certain techniques.
  • The Yoga Perspective: In yoga, the mat’s thickness affects balance, cushioning, and connection to the ground. A super thick mat might offer excellent cushioning for seated postures, but it could make standing and balancing poses more challenging due to reduced stability.
  • The Balance for Jiu-Jitsu: For dynamic movements and balances typical in jiu-jitsu, a thinner mat might seem more appropriate, as it provides better stability and connection to the ground. However, some cushioning is still needed to protect against the impacts inherent in jiu-jitsu. This is why a mat in the 3-5mm range can be the sweet spot – it offers enough cushioning to be comfortable but is thin enough to provide stability for both jiu-jitsu and yoga practices.

5. The Grip Saga Continues in Deciding Which Yoga Mat Is Good for Jiu Jitsu

Emphasizing on the Grip’s Role in Jiu-Jitsu:

Grip isn’t just about holding onto something securely; it’s about maintaining a connection with the ground during fluid motions. In jiu-jitsu, grip means stability and control. Whether you’re rolling on the mat, transitioning into a submission, or escaping a hold, a good grip on the mat can be the difference between a successful move and a missed opportunity.

Different Materials, Different Grips:

Various materials offer distinct types of grips. For instance, mats made from natural rubber tend to provide an excellent grip due to their textured surfaces. On the other hand, mats with a polyurethane surface, such as the Yoga Mat Grip+ 3 mm V2, are known for their robust grip even when wet, thanks to its excellent sweat absorption properties[^9^].

Why a Slip can be Catastrophic:

In jiu-jitsu, a simple slip can lead to a compromised position or even injury. You want a mat that not only provides grip under dry conditions but also when it’s wet from sweat. The better the grip, the safer and more efficient your training will be.

6. Flexibility & Durability: The Unbeatable Duo in Choosing Which Yoga Mat Is Good for Jiu Jitsu

Understanding the Balance:

In the realm of mats, flexibility and durability often seem like opposing forces. A highly flexible mat might be perceived as one that easily wears out, while a very durable mat may come off as rigid. However, for jiu-jitsu, you need a blend of both.

The Importance of a Flexible Mat:

During jiu-jitsu sessions, practitioners transition through various moves. A flexible mat ensures that it conforms to the pressure exerted, thereby minimizing the risk of injuries. It’s especially crucial during ground workouts, ensuring that the mat doesn’t become an obstacle during transitions.

Durability in the Face of Intense Sessions:

Jiu-jitsu isn’t a gentle practice. The mat will face constant friction, intense pressure, and the weight of both practitioners. As such, materials like rubber and polyester[^9^] come to the forefront, as they can withstand such stressors without wearing out quickly.

Choosing Right:

When shopping for a mat, it’s essential to look for ones that mention both flexibility and durability in their specifications or reviews. A mat that balances both these qualities will stand the test of time and rigorous jiu-jitsu sessions.

7. Portability: The Unsung Hero in Deciding Which Yoga Mat Is Good for Jiu Jitsu

Why Portability Matters:

For many practitioners, jiu-jitsu isn’t restricted to the dojo or gym. They practice at home, in parks, or even during vacations. Portability ensures that your training doesn’t have to stop due to the unavailability of a suitable surface.

Features that Enhance Portability:

Mats that are lightweight, come with carrying straps or bags, or can be easily rolled up are prime candidates for portability. The Yoga Mat Grip+ 3 mm V2, for example, while offering excellent grip and appropriate thickness, also comes with a strap[^9^], making it a breeze to carry around.

The Dual Benefit of Portable Mats:

Apart from the obvious advantage of training anywhere, portable mats can also serve as a backup during regular gym sessions. If the gym’s mats are worn out or unsanitary, you have your trusted mat ready to roll out.

Storage Matters:

Another aspect of portability is storage. Not everyone has vast storage space. A mat that’s portable is also typically easier to store. Whether it’s under the bed, in a closet, or hung behind a door, portability ensures that your mat doesn’t become a cumbersome item in your living space.

Which Yoga Mat Is Good for Jiu Jitsu? Making Your Choice

Dollamur Flexi-Roll Wrestling Home Mat [1]

  • Size: This mat offers a generous space of 10 feet by 10 feet. It allows ample room for practicing various drills and moves without running out of space.
  • Material and Design: It boasts a vinyl shell with a sports foam interior. This combination ensures durability while providing cushioning essential for Jiu Jitsu practice.
  • Thickness: At 1.25″, it provides a comfortable cushion against the hard floor, reducing the risk of injuries.
  • Portability and Storage: The rollout design is particularly advantageous for those with limited space. After training, you can roll it up and store it away.

Zebra’s Grappling Mats

  • Thickness: Adhering to the standards of the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation, the 1.5-inch thickness is perfect for ensuring safety during training sessions. An option of 2-inch thick mats is available for those practicing high-impact throws from Judo.
  • Material: With a foam density of 15 lb/ft3, these mats promise excellent shock absorption, reducing the impact on the body during falls or takedowns.
  • Purpose: These mats are designed keeping traditional BJJ training in mind, offering optimum protection and support.

BalanceFrom All Purpose Mat

  • Versatility: Suitable for both gymnastics and BJJ, it ensures that the user gets value for their money.
  • Size: At 4 feet by 10 feet with a 2-inch thickness, this mat provides ample space and comfort for practicing moves.
  • User Experience: The author of the article chose this mat for home BJJ training during the pandemic, suggesting a high level of satisfaction and a gym-like feel.

Greatmats’ Grappling MMA puzzle mats

  • Variety: The options include puzzle mats, roll-outs, and folding mats, giving the user flexibility in choice based on their space and usage requirements.
  • Safety and Quality: Recognized by renowned figures in the BJJ community, these mats promise quality and safety, reducing risks like falls and mat burns.

Fuji Smooth Series Mats and Fuji Tatami Series Mats

  • Diversity: Whether you’re practicing BJJ, MMA, or Submission Grappling, the Smooth Series Mats are designed for performance, safety, and quality. Meanwhile, the Tatami Series Mats cater to diverse martial arts forms like Judo, Hapkido, and Aikido.
  • Material: Made from high-quality re-bonded foam, these mats provide a blend of durability and comfort.
  • Size Options: The Tatami Series offers sizes in 40mm or 50mm, giving flexibility based on individual needs.

When deciding on the right mat for Jiu Jitsu, it is also advisable to seek recommendations from coaches, trainers, or individuals experienced with home mats to ensure you get the best fit for your needs.

You May Also Like: Finding the Best Jiu-Jitsu Mats: Top 3 Picks

The Ultimate Verdict

When hunting for the answer to “which yoga mat is good for jiu jitsu,” remember the essentials: grip, thickness, flexibility, durability, and portability. With the booming popularity of jiu-jitsu, combined with the age-old wisdom of yoga, blending these two practices on the right mat will undoubtedly enhance your martial arts journey.


Q1. Why would a jiu-jitsu practitioner need a yoga mat?

Given the growing alignment between yoga and jiu-jitsu, a yoga mat helps practitioners maintain balance, flexibility, and composure during training sessions1.

Q2. What thickness should I opt for in a yoga mat for jiu-jitsu?

For dynamic movements typical in jiu-jitsu, a mat leaning towards 3-5mm thickness might be best[^9^].

Q3. Can yoga enhance my jiu-jitsu performance?

Absolutely! Yoga can improve flexibility, balance, posture, and mental composure, all essential for effective jiu-jitsu performance3.

Q4. What should I prioritize when selecting a yoga mat for jiu-jitsu?

Grip, thickness, flexibility, durability, and portability should be at the forefront of your considerations.

Q5. Is there a difference between jiu-jitsu mats and yoga mats?

A: Yes, while jiu-jitsu mats like the Fuji Smooth Series Mats are tailored for MMA and grappling with multi-density foam2, yoga mats like the Yoga Mat Grip+ 3 mm V2 prioritize grip, sweat absorption, and alignment

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