Yoga Pant Basics
Yoga Pant Basics
- an introduction to meditation apparel
Yoga dates back thousands of years, and many yoga postures have been
passed down through the ages. The breathing techniques and postures
increase health, flexibility and vitality. Some also use yoga as part of
a spiritual practice, although in the west most practitioners focus on
the physical and mental health benefits. Yoga movements require clothing
that is non-confining and moves with the wearer. Modern yoga pants were
developed to meet this need.
Brief History of Yoga Apparel
Before yoga pants, yoga practitioners in the west wore athletic wear
such as sweat pants, or shorts. While comfortable and practical, these
are less attractive than the pants you see today made specifically for
yoga. In addition, most were not form fitting. The form-fitting design
of yoga pants allows yoga instructors to assess, accurately, if a
studentís body is aligned correctly while holding poses. The
curve-hugging style of the pants has also led to their popularity
outside of yoga class.
Most popular styles of modern yoga pants cling to the body and show off a
well-toned abdomen and buttocks. Because of this and the fact that the
fabrics are comfortable, many more people have incorporated the pants
into their wardrobe for wearing to nightclubs or performing daily
The fashion appeal of the garment has been accelerated by the addition
of more stylish colors and patterns. While the most common color remains
black, colorful waistbands are often added for extra visual appeal.
In addition to black, you can find the pants in white, charcoal, pink, blue and many other colors and prints.
Yoga pants as we know them today could not exist without the advent of
new, stretchy yet breathable fabrics. Some pants are made from a
combination of microfiber, which is soft to the touch, and spandex,
which is a flexible material. Other pants combine natural fabrics, such
as cotton, with spandex or similar materials. Expertly blending fabrics
in this way allows the development of material that has the positive
aspects of both. Lycra alone, for example, is not as soft as a blended
Competition to gain a large customer base has meant that many yoga
manufacturers have developed their own trademarked fabrics. The material
blends are kept secret, in many cases, to prevent other companies from
offering less expensive reproductions.
Like other types of pants, yoga pant styles vary. Flare or boot cut
styles are full-length, form fitting through the hips and thighs but
loose at the ankles. The degree of flare is dependent upon the
manufacturer. Proponents of this style like the non-confining feel and
the slimming effect, as the flared areas help draw attention away from
A style particularly popular in warmer climates or season is the capris.
These usually fall mid-calf, leaving the lower calves and ankles bare.
Capris or crop pants may be flare, straight-leg or of the legging
variety and many have colored piping added for a stylish accent.
Leggings, whether full-length or capris are form-fitting from top to
bottom. The material of these pants generally contains a higher
percentage of spandex or other stretchy fabrics to help them maintain
their shape. Many styles of yoga leggings are difficult to distinguish
from other types of leggings and, like yoga pants, can easily transition
from the yoga class to an afternoon of shopping or running errands.
Pant sizes range from petite to plus size. The latter, however, are sometimes more difficult to find outside specialty shops.
Although in western culture, yoga is currently more popular for women
than men, this fact is changing as men realize how beneficial yoga can
be for overall health.
Through history, men have practiced yoga, but in the United States and
similar western countries, it attracted more women who sought the
graceful muscle toning and flexibility benefits yoga offers. As more men
add yoga to their fitness routines, the demand for menís yoga apparel
has gradually risen. Many men make do with track pants or sweats, but
others are learning that manufacturers have created yoga apparel
designed for the male form.
Most styles of yoga pants for men are loose-fitting, allowing for
modesty. The style is similar to the loose yet stretchy styles of many
martial arts uniforms. The man who is exceptionally comfortable with his
body can also find form-fitting yoga pants in menís sizes, if he
Most pants styled for men are full-length. However, crop pants and shorts are also available.
Yoga pants popularity will undoubtedly remain strong in the coming
years, at least among the young and exercise enthusiasts of all ages. As
new materials are developed, the materials should become even better at
wicking sweat away from the skin and providing all-day comfort for the
wearer. For many, these pants are now a wardrobe staple, and this trend
is likely to continue for as long as yoga remains popular.
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