WTF Is a Hydraulic Yoga Mat, Madonna?

The singer had one installed in her hotel room before the Super Bowl. It begs the question: what the heck is it?

Us Weekly got the big scoop (*sarcasm*) on Madonna’s “hydraulic yoga mat,” a contraption she had installed in her hotel room ahead of the Super Bowl. She reportedly stayed in Indianapolis for several days leading up to the game, and had the mat—which was apparently on a lift that went up to the ceiling (?)—installed in her room. She also brought along a yoga instructor and cranked the heat during sessions.

I’ve been googling for the past 15 minutes to try and figure out what a hydraulic yoga mat actually is, and what benefits one might provide over, say, a traditional on-the-floor model.

I asked our resident yoga expert Maura Manzo if she had a clue. “I have no freakin’ idea,” she wrote in an email.

So I called the yoga-gear experts over at Lululemon in Center City. Surely they’ve heard of this contraption … right?

The first employee I talked to was as baffled as me, so she went to find her manager, Katie Montana. “I’ve got several yoga instructors here and no one has any idea,” said Montana. “We’re trying to reason it out, like if it could change your balance perspective or something. But if it’s only raising you vertically, it’s not going to do anything more than if you practiced on the ground.”

I’m at a loss. Does anyone want to render a guess? I mean, Madonna’s in pretty killer shape, so the fancy pants yoga mat must be doing something …