Yoga mat

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I think it is made from some type of modified rubber. I've not really though about it before. Except that the main part of its purpose is to ensure no slipping when working on it. It is a very brightly coloured, over-sized coffin shaped strip of rubber, about 0.5 cm thick.

Where and how is it used?

Most mornings (? - maybe an optimistic estimation). 4 out of 7 mornings a week - I spend between 10 - 30 mins on it doing a variety of exercises. I try and do a minimum of 6 Sun Saluations - as I like the stretching and the routine. It helps me wake up. However the real reason I developed the routine is to support me with a number of physiotherapy exercises that I have to do daily to maintain joint strength. I don't need to do these exercises on the mat - but it marks out a space and a focus in my living room. It symbolises taking care of my health.

What did you or someone else pay for it?

I asked for it for Christmas about 10 years ago - average cost £30

Why do you want to add it to the museum?

The history of rubber is a horrifying part of the story of global imperialism - and it is one of the commodities that built European wealth - it revolutionised many things at the time in Europe but caused horrendous suffering in the rubber plantations of the Far East and Africa. My yoga mat might have connotations of peace loving, benign activities - but it tells a story of plunder and slavery. (Actually I think yoga mats are now made from synthetic rubber - polymer resins).


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