There are many styles and materials of yoga pants around, but sleek, fitting activewear seems to be hugely popular among yoga-lovers and casual wearers alike. What’s the best fit for yoga activities?
The best fit for yoga pants is one that is comfortable and does not hamper your movement. This standard is subjective and different for everyone. Some prefer tight fits that feel like a second skin, while others might prefer looser fits for their softer, more flowy texture.
What’s good about each style? Which style is best? Keep reading to find out.
Advantages of a Tighter Fit
Many people prefer to have their yoga pants tight-fitting to keep the fabric close to their bodies. This prevents excess material from flapping around and getting caught awkwardly while you’re doing stretches, which can cause you to trip and fall over. Yoga is about finding your center, and avoiding accidents or discomfort related to loose clothing helpfully removes a source of external distractions, allowing you to maintain focus.
In a class setting, wearing more skin-tight pants might enable the instructor to have a better view of your form so that he or she can help to correct your posture effectively. It’s no surprise that tight-fitting yoga pants dominate the Instagram hashtag because they allow yogis to show off every detail of their incredible form.
A tight fit absolutely must be accompanied by an adequate amount of elasticity. 2-way stretching fabric is common in looser-fitting pants, but a 4-way stretch would be optimal for tighter styles because the fabric could end up becoming see-through when stretched thinly over joints like your knees or bum. You might also want to consider going for a high-waisted option as inadequate stretch could result in the pants slipping down while exercising. Remember to test all these factors out when trying on yoga pants in-store before committing to a purchase!
Advantages of a Looser Fit
On the other hand, some people prefer to do yoga in looser clothing for various reasons. One popularly cited reason is the revealing nature of tight-fitting pants, due to both its body-hugging silhouette and its tendency to become transparent where the material is stretched.
Unlike the tight-fitting styles of today, wearing natural, airy materials such as cotton is actually closer to how yoga is traditionally practiced. Wide cotton pants tend to be more breathable and cooling. Because it is less elastic, its wearers never have to worry about it becoming see-through when stretched.
While it’s true that beginners may struggle to manage all the excess fabric, there are ways to minimize its interference with your poses. Elastic ankle cuffs help to gather the fabric at the end of the pant sleeves so that they don’t slide up your legs uncomfortably or present tripping hazards close to your feet.
Which Fit is Better?
In modern yoga, wearing tight-fitting yoga pants is by far the trendier option at the moment. This is due to a lot of strong marketing targeted at women, promoting these beauty ideals and encouraging women to feel attractive both inside and outside the yoga studio.
However, if current trends don’t faze you, the best fit truly is the most comfortable fit. This is entirely a matter of personal preference, and you shouldn’t feel pressured to wear clothes that you don’t feel represent your personality! You might feel more comfortable in close-fitting, elastic pants that proudly show off your figure. Or you might love the lightness of flowing cotton that helps you to relax as you pose. There are no correct answers.
If you’re still undecided at this point and are just starting out in yoga, we recommend tighter-fitting pants. Having any excess material out of the way would be a bigger priority as you focus on coordinating your limbs and strengthening your muscles first. By the time you’re further along in your yoga journey and have your meditative basics down, you’ll probably have a better feel for the style that best helps you to channel your inner self.