Hammock 101

How to pick the right hammock ?

FIRST LET'S DEFINE WHAT IS A QUALITY HAMMOCK

For string cotton hammocks (Mayan or Mexican hammocks) there are 2 major factors to look at:

THE TYPE OF WEAVING 

  • The top quality Mayan hammocks are woven with each threads crossing four (4 threads). The result is a tight weave that will leave almost no marks on the skin. 
  • There are also hammocks woven Nicaraguan style (2 threads). This allow to make a big hammock with less material, so less expensive.
  • Hill-Tribe hammocks are very tightly woven using 3 yarns of acrylic for much strength and beautiful colour patterns.

THE AMOUNT OF MATERIAL

  • The size of a string hammock will depend greatly on those 2 factors. The type of weaving (tight or loose) and the amount of material used. The only way to measure this is by comparing weights. The heavier the bigger and the better.
Hammock with or without the spreader bars ?

You might think that spreader bar hammocks are more comfortable but it is the other way around. Without those bars the hammock wrap around the body to give you the perfect fit. The only advantage of spreader bar hammocks is that the wooden bars keep them open for an easy in and out and a great look. 

String hammock (rope hammock) 

The string Mayan hammocks made with thin cotton (#9) yarn are the most comfortable. The weaving technique used by Mayan artisans for more then 700 years allow the hammock to stretch in all directions to adjust perfectly to the shape of your body. The feeling is compared to floating on a cloud. The Mayan weaving I prefer is called the "4 yarns" one. It means that every string crosses 4 other ones before coming back. This allows for a hammock that will stretch much without big wholes in the net and this means less marks on the skin. This technique also produce hammocks that can hold hundreds of pounds. Although this type of hammock can hold many persons each cotton yarn individually can be damaged and will suffer from humidity.

You want a little stronger without loosing comfort, I have now XL hammocks made with a sligthly thicker #12 yarn.

For heavier usage try the JUMBO Thick cord (#24) Mayan hammock. The cotton used is 3 times bigger then the regular thin one. This XXL Mayan hammock is perfect for the whole family.

IMPORTANT: Mayan hammocks made with nylon won't stretch at all and so are the less comfortable. This material won't be affected by humidity but direct sun light will damage them. 

In 2018 I introduced what I believe to be the MOST BEAUTIFUL weather resistant string hammocks. HILL-TRIBE HAMMOCKS are made with strong and COLORFUL acrylic yarns. The weaving is very tight (no waffle marks) and acrylic is softer then cotton on the skin. This material will not be affected by rain or sun so you can leave your hammock outside and we guarantee them for 5 years against fading. They are also VERY comfortable. Those hammocks are made by hill tribes women of northern Thailand and are certified FAIR TRADE.

On a string hammock always BEWARE of buttons on your pants or shirt, jewels and never keep your shoes in a hammock.

Fabric hammocks ?

Fabric hammocks like our true Brazilian hammocks are beautiful, comfortable and very resistant. It is the perfect choice for kids as they can't get their little fingers trapped in holes.

The fabric hammocks offer a great form of comfort and relaxation. This style of hammock originate from South-America where they have been used for many centuries.

Fabric hammocks differ from the Mayan hammocks in that they are made of a thigh woven cloth and are therefore less cooling in the summer heat. However, they are great for cooler climates and mild weather use. Some people prefer those hammocks to a netted one when used by kids.


Finally the parachute silk nylon hammocks (travel hammocks or camping hammocks) are light, comfortable and easy to care. They are the best hammocks to carry with you at all time. The parachute silk nylon used by Trek Hamaca is of the best quality. The main difference with this nylon is that the hammock will stretch enough for a good comfortable night of sleep but will not sag so much that you feel lost in the bottom of a bag. The strong triple stitching is also an important difference between the Trek Hamaca camping hammock and some other brands. We have seen hammocks that will stretch but not the stitching ending up with broken stitches all over the hammock and a loss of strength. Parachute silk nylon will let your skin breathes so the travel hammock or camping chair are comfortable even on a hot summer day. This material is also machine washable in cold water and will dry in minutes outside. The perfect fabric for travelers and outdoors enthusiasts.

And which fiber to choose for my hammock ?

Cotton is the most comfortable but has to be protected from bad weather. Cotton hammocks have to dry completely and it is recommended to store them after usage. Synthetic fibres won't stretch as much but can resist humidity. For a shady area the Morelos Mayan hammock are very comfortable but they will last longer if not exposed to sun rays. The perfect hammocks to be left outside all summer are by far the Thaï ones from HILL-TRIBE HAMMOCKS.

SO !

  • You want a hammock to be installed inside ? You will install it outside but are ready to store it after usage ? Comfort is the most important thing of all ? No doubt that a cotton hammock (mayan or Brazilian) will give you the most satisfaction. Both come in different sizes and colours to match your needs
  • You already know that you will leave your hammock out all summer? The  best hassle free hammocks are from HILL-TRIBE HAMMOCKS. 5 year guarantee against fading. AND THEY ALSO ARE THE MOST BEAUTIFUL.
  • Your goal is to take your hammock with you (camping, trekking, cycling, travelling, etc) ? You want a kid friendly hammock that is machine washable ? you do not have the necessary 11' to 13' to hang other types of hammocks ? Think about TREK HAMACA

THINGS TO REMEMBER:

  • Cotton hammocks are the most comfortable but they have to be stored after usage.
  • The weight of your Mayan hammock will tell you about it's size. Compare this factor.
  • Acrylic hammocks are the most beautiful, the softest and they can be left outside all summer.
  • When using string hammocks beware of buttons on your pants and shirt or any sharp object.
  • Fabric hammocks are the best if also used by children.
  • Traditional rope hammocks with open weave are the less comfortable. The tighter the weave the more comfort.