Tuesday, November 24, 2009

(Re)New(ed) Feet on a New Mat

Feet on Mat
Originally uploaded by Food Fanatic
So you've all been listening to my ENDLESS whining about my "foot of doom," as my jazzerbuddy Terri calls it. No? Then you must not be reading me on Facebook.

Lucky you. I'm a champeen whiner!


First I broke (a stress fracture) the 3rd metatarsal on my left foot. In the process of having that taken care of, the "ultra-fashionable" boot they had me wear caused my somewhat dormant Plantar Fasciitis to come roaring on with a vengeance.

Well, I think I'm close to declaring myself HEALED!

How did this happen? Well, the treatment ranged from Earth shoes (x2), Super Feet insoles, distance Reiki healing, prayer, laying on of hands, acupressure massage by my massage therapist, athletic tape, very old Birkenstock sandals, icing and...a thicker yoga mat for those times when one MUST be barefoot...yoga!

Yogi Liz graciously allowed me to borrow her personal Jade Harmony mat for a bit to see if the thicker mat would benefit. You'll see in my next post why I felt particularly touched that she would allow me to borrow her mat. Mats are very personal, somewhat intimate items and to loan it to someone else...well, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't let just any old tom, dick or harry use mine.

But the thicker mat really helped keep me in yoga during the last couple of very painful weeks.

The Jade Harmony is a rubber mat. Quite thick and quite heavy. And the rubber smell never really goes away. To wash one is a major commitment as they can take days and days to dry.

So I decided to order a thicker mat of my own. While I like the Jade mat, Liz was able to order me a Kulae (pronounced coo-lie--long 'i') wholesale. So I was able to get an $80+ mat for about $36. The Kulae is made of TPE or Thermo Plastic Elastomer. It is a composite material that is 100% biodegradable and recyclable, and is 100% free from PVC, Chlorides, Dioxins, Latex and Rubber (free from allergens). It's a resilient, highly elastic material that is composed primarily of styrene-butadiene-styrene block copolymers. (this whole last bit was stolen directly off the Kulae website. I'm pretty sure they won't care.) I bought the Kulae Ultra, which is almost 1/2-inch thick. Pretty spongy.

So now I'm breaking in a new mat. The hardest part is getting it to be not slippery. I've washed it once already and will probably have to do that again another time or two.

But my feet don't care. They are HAPPY!

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