Everyone knows that you’re not a true fitness-loving, gym-goer until you’ve got the kit to prove it. You’ve been showing off your skills at the gym for a good while now; your old gym leggings are looking a little bit worse for wear and you’ve decided it’s high time you got your butt – quite literally- into gear and found yourself a brand spanking new pair.
There’s a fine line between reasonably priced leggings and good quality leggings. It’s all well and good buying cheap and cheerful leggings – you are only going to sweat all over them after all. However, there’s absolutely nothing worse than turning up to the gym proud as punch with your new leggings to discover that they’re as see-through as a pane of glass and bunch up your unmentionables so much that they become almost too mentionable.
So if you want to make sure you get it right for your next pair, here are five things to look out for.
What kind of fit?
Leggings are the most versatile piece of kit that you’ll wear at the gym, so making sure you’ve got yourself the right pair is incredibly important. The fit is potentially one of the most important aspects attached to your choice – no one wants an unflattering pair of leggings that cling to all the wrong places. However, at the same time, leggings need to be fitted to your shape to maximise your movement and allow your lower body to breathe.
Leggings tend to move down your body as you work out so size down slightly. No one wants to be wedging their leggings up mid-session or displaying too much every time you bend down to lift the next weights.
Are high-waisted leggings the be-all and end-all?
Perfect for those who are looking to keep everything in there – knickers included. There’s absolutely nothing worse than being mid-squat and realising that you’ve got your flowery bloomers on show for the entire world (okay, the entire gym) to see.
High-waisted leggings also provide excellent support to your muscles while you’re working out. It really doesn’t matter if you’re slim and toned, leggings that lack the high-waisted option will leave you with a bloat that even going to the gym won’t get rid of- it’s just how it is. High-waisted leggings are magical - they elongate your legs and slim the hips down.
Different leggings for different seasons or not?
While full-length leggings are a fantastic idea during the cold winter months, having an option when the sun starts to show its face is important. Cropped leggings offer the same support as full-length leggings but have a more casual look about them. Cropped leggings are perfect for all types of exercise, from yoga to running, exercise classes to hardcore gym sessions.
Versatile and squattable... what more do you want? Be warned: cropped means flesh on show, which may mean you will want to shave your legs, girl…
If you’re less inclined to go to the gym in colder weather, then cropped leggings are probably not the one for you. With this in mind, leggings that have a fleece or weather resistant lining might be more appropriate.
There’s nothing worse than cold pins when you’re trying to keep fit, so cut out the trouble before it presents itself and get one step ahead of that pesky cold air.
What type of material?
When you’re exercising, you’re exposing yourself to all sorts of moisture and the material that your leggings are made of determines how much moisture is on show. While your gym leggings need to be breathable (and consequently made up of material that allows the skin to breath) you need to make sure you’re choosing leggings made of resilient enough material that your sweat isn’t seeping through it.
If you’re taking a spin class, a renowned sweat fest, you need to make sure you have a pair of leggings that are both chic and absorbent.
Features such as mesh panels built into your leggings give you that cooling mechanism while also making sure you look as cool as a cucumber.
What’s the style, nowadays?
Gym leggings are quickly- and quite rightly- becoming a bit of a fashion trend.
Leggings can be purchased in a whole range of colours and patterns, and you’re really given the opportunity to show off a bit of yourself and your personality when you wear them.
If you’re a bubbly, outgoing person, then jazzy leggings with bright colours and patterns may well be for you. If you’re fashion conscious then keeping on top of the trends is important- this most definitely applies to leggings – get those leopard print leggings and work them, girl.
If you’re more interested in keeping your wobbly bits packed in than whether your kecks have polka dots on them, then bold, single colour statement leggings with extra support may well be more your cup of tea. What’s more, these are likely to go with more of your gym tops too.
Too much print-clashing in the gym may give other gym goers a headache!