I have tried many products and always come back to cork for yoga. I prefer a cork mat, blocks and anything else I can get my hands on. I love the feel of cork but there are so many more amazing benefits besides it’s durability. Some facts you may have not know…
1. Cork forms antioxidant and anti-carcinogenic compounds that may reduce the risk of heart and degenerative diseases (Furthermore, waste from the cork industry gives rise to composites which are used in vaccine adjuvants to enhance immune system response).
2. It’s durable, unique and environmentally friendly. Plus, cork is a natural material, so it doesn’t off-gas like many other types of materials.
3. Light weight: Due to the fact that more than 50 % of the cell volume of a cork piece consists of air, cork is one of the lightest solid substances, with a specific gravity of .25.
4. A cubic inch of cork can withstand as great a pressure as 14,000 lbs. per square inch without breaking, and retains 90% of its original form after the pressure is released. Less or more normal pressure increase return to original form from 97% to 100%.
5. Because heavy pressure does not break down or destroy the tiny air cells, but compresses the air within the cells, the cork begins to spring back when the pressure is removed. A roll or sheet of composition cork can be compressed in one direction without losing its dimensions in the other direction. This is of great importance for many applications of composition cork.
6. While cork is not completely impervious to moisture penetration, its cellular structure gives it a high resistance to penetration by water which with the addition of the proper binder can be proofed.
7. Cork is a highly frictional material, both in its natural form as well as in cork composition. Even when wet or coated with oil or grease, cork retains this quality which surpasses that of leather, rubber, and many other products used for frictional or non-skid purposes.
8. Next to a vacuum, a “dead” air space minutely divides one of the most efficient non-conductors of heat. The cell construction of cork provides this property for which cork is so famous.9. Cork, with its 200 million air cells per cubic inch; of which 50% is air, essentially acts as an “air cushion”, absorbing vibrations and direct impacts.
9. Cork is a tough, durable substance with remarkable capacity for retaining its initial properties wherever recommended. The high degree of stability under varying conditions is paramount to the continuing success and use of cork in the world today.
10. 42 Birds makes eco-friendly yoga mats and accessories using cork from Spain and Portugal. The brand is driven by functionality, sustainability and natural beauty. They are looking to create the best performing yoga products that also look good in your home and in your practice. These products should be owned and enjoyed with the knowledge that they both come from and support nature’s eco system.