Pricey Yoga Mats Defy Recession
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 27, 2009 7:50 PM CDT
A yoga guru in Germany leads his charge.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Consumers are cutting back in all sorts of ways amid the recession—just not when it comes to yoga. Sales of designer mats, which fetch in the ballpark of $100, are surging, reports Time. One leading company, Manduka, has seen sales shoot up 87% on Amazon in the last 4 months. It's now teaming up with the national Dick's chain to take advantage.

What gives? Yes, the mats are good quality and offer traction and joint support. But a series of other factors are at play. More stressed people are taking up yoga, and they are generally young, well educated, and rich. "In other words, yogis are yuppies," writes Sean Gregory. "And if there's one thing yuppies do, it's copycat their brethren." When they see others with the mats, they're swayed. "Look at me: I've got a Manduka; I'm totally into yoga."