What should you wear to a yoga class?
For those new to yoga classes, a question I hear often is "what should I wear?".
Truthfully, it is important to consider your attire. Why? Mainly so you are able to forget about what you are wearing and instead focus all of your intention on to the poses and breathing.
If you grew up as a dancer, you know it's important to wear something which allows you to move freely and to focus on your posture.
It's also necessary to wear fitted clothing so that your instructor can see how your body moves.
Yoga is somewhat the same. If your clothing is loose, you are just going to be annoyed during class. Wearing the right items allows you to focus on the poses, and helps an instruct better adjust you into correct alignment.
My general tips for both tops and bottoms can be summarized in three words: fitted, breathable, layers.
To do a "top test" there is one pose that never lies: downward facing dog.
Put on the outfit you plan to flow in and get into a downward facing dog position. You will know right away if your top is too loose or too low cut for you to comfortably flow through this position during class.
I don't apply this rule to the sweater I'm layering with, as I will probably take this off before we get into too many downward facing dogs. BUT, I always try to make sure I will be able to sit in this position in whatever top I actually will be flowing in. The last thing you want is to feel uncomfortable and constantly be pulling your top up or down.
Most yoga tops in the market are going to be "moderate" support. If the class you are attending is more dynamic, you may consider upgrading to a more supportive top.
Generally speaking tight is better. Yes, there are yoga joggers which can be nice depending on the type of class (aka: yin). However, I tend to stay away from joggers because I find arm balances can be extra challenging when my pants are slippery.
Now what about shorts?! Just be mindful.
Think about doing happy baby pose in the shorts you are wearing. Make sure you are in your comfort zone. I would say spandex or yoga shorts are best. Once you start getting to running shorts with built in underwear, you may find a little discomfort.
Every yoga class is special. Here's what I wear based on the type...
I'm wearing leggings and a tank. I highly suggest the downward facing dog test for a hot yoga class in a sports bra (as you'll likely be stripping off those extra layers). Moderate support is best for me in these classes to stay comfortable in the heat. I'm also wearing sweat-wicking material on bottom instead of the comfy cottony leggings.
To start, I'm wearing something light on top, which will probably come off quick. I especially like the cropped hoodie / henley look. No socks.
Power & Hot Power Yoga
I'm forgetting the tank and starting in the sports bra. If you are taking more of a hybrid-yoga class which will incorporate cardio (jumping jacks, mountain climbers, etc.), consider increasing your sports bra support from "moderate" to "high". Here I definitely want all the sweat-wicking material. This is also when I'm considering the yogi shorts instead of leggings.
To start, this is the same as for normal hot yoga. Something light on top (unless the room and my body arm already warm), no socks.
Classic & Yin Yoga
I'm wearing my softest yogi clothes. High-waisted, cottony leggings (hello, alo yoga buttery collection). Moderate support sports bra. Fitted, but looser tank top or workout tee.
To start, I'm putting a long sleeve over my tank & (in the winter) a sweater over this too. I'm also wearing socks / ankle warmers. Since the room is now not heated, I want to warm up my muscles with my clothing before the physical warm up begins.
Have a favorite yoga outfit? Tell me below!