As a promotional item the Yoga mat has become incredibly popular driven in no small part by Covid 19 and the desire to exercise at home with a Zoom instructor. The yoga mat seems an ideal product which can be branded with a corporate logo, however there are some issues with this and it is wise to tread carefully.
- Screen Inks
Given the nature of a yoga mat surface which is designed to be ‘grippy’, then inevitably the surface will be textured in some way. Most printing systems will not take to this textured surface with the exception of screen printing. The heat required by a transfer print system would rule this out. Screen printing means high set up costs, so individual or personalised mats are out, but the minimum order quantity may be as low as 10.
Screen printing however will not naturally adhere to TPE or rubber mats and a special ink needs to be used. This is not an issue for a single colour white logo but each pantone colour will need to be specially blended and therefore attract a premium. Screen printing is great if you printing a bold logo but it produces a very course definition meaning that tonal work does always look so good. This is because the dot size is so large compared to digital or lithographic printing techniques. It is best for a member of our team to have a look at your logo and to advise whether it will work or not.
Printing more than one colour is not recommended because of the difficulty of registration of different colours. A yoga mat is soft and pliable and thus when applying the screen to the mat no pressure can be applied and this means registration is very difficult. Again seek advice for Pavilion if you are unsure.
- Position of Printed logo
Given that a yoga mat will involve the mat being flexed and scuffed, potentially with a sweaty hand or foot. And given that that ink adhesion can be problematic for TPE, then the positioning of the logo is crucial. We recommend a surface area no bigger than an A5 and kept to the foot of the mat away from the main contact area. The ink cannot easily be scuffed off but it is not recommended to test this to the limit by printing in the centre of the mat.
We can also give some recommendations regarding cleaning of the mat – a little warm water rather than solvent based cleaners are best, not just to keep the print intact but also to keep the TPE from cracking and drying out.
- All over multicolour print designs
Given the above comments we are often asked about the mats that are brightly coloured printed all over to unique designs. These mats are likely PVC, which we will not want to supply because of the environmental consequences and our particular corporate values about polluting plastics. You can obtain TPE and rubber mats with large coverage of ink in multiple colours but this will involve printing during manufacture rather than branding as a retro process. Branding in this way will require an order quantity of 500 plus mats which is usually beyond the budget or requirement of most companies.
- Print the carrier
The other option is to print a logo to the carrier bag used. These are often made from a polyester based fabric and are not subject to the same mechanical stresses as the mat. Thus it is easier to brand and far more robust an option.
If you want to chat through your options then please do not hesitate to give us a call.