Sometimes we have to wonder, is this real life? And, more often than ever, this question seems to pop up when reading about new yoga gimmicks doodads and gear. Some are pretty cool and helpful and compliment the evolution of yoga. And some, well, some leave us wondering what in the world people are thinking. And…why?
Case in point: the BallerYoga mat made from dead cow skin that rolls out like a huge deflated football, which, oh by the way, costs $1000. Let’s take a look for a moment. You have a logo that way too closely resembles an om symbol, followed by the word “BALLER” next to some football stitches…because manliness? The mat is intended to appeal to the yoga bros who need to feel dominant and sportsy and like a “baller” (aka player, in multiple senses of the word). “Nothing is More Primal” the website states.
Tagline: “For Athletes who have Everything and Desire Nothing”
That the mat is made from cowhide and isn’t exactly in line with the yoga lifestyle or philosophy (whether you’re veg or not) doesn’t seem to be an issue, according to its creator Cedric Yau, a hedge fund data analyst turned yogapreneur.
“If you’re coming from the yoga world,” Yau told the Washington Post, “there is, for some yogis, a vegan attachment.”
“But,” he added, “when it gets into the athlete community, we don’t really see that as a primary concern.”
Apparently price isn’t a primary concern either. For the 26-by-80-inch “pigskin,” one must shell out $1000 and a bit of their dignity and self-respect. The smaller 69.5 inch mat is only $495—but, seriously, what “baller” is going to buy the small mat?
Supposedly “exclusivity” and grip warrant the hefty price tag: “I do believe that no surface grips better than football leather,” Yau said, “so you’re paying for the experience, the performance, the material; you’re paying for the idea that leather would last.”
But does leather work well with sweating? Do they throw in a pair of Isotoners as a free gift with purchase? Also, call us crazy, but we just think the leather lasts better as a protective organ for our bovine friends. We’ll take cow pose without the skin, thanks.