Yoga Pants

Yoga is a physical, mental, and spiritual practice or discipline which originated in India and has spread to other countries including the United States.

 Yoga Fashion

Pants are an item of clothing worn from the waist to the ankles, covering both legs separately (rather than with cloth extending across both legs as in robes, skirts, and dresses).

Yoga pants are a type of flexible, form-fitting pants designed for the practice of yoga as well as other physical activities that involve a lot of movement, bending and stretching.  They are typically worn for sports and physical exercise such as martial arts, dancing, pilates, crossfit training and aerobics.  This type of pant are generally made of cotton, lycra spandex, nylon, polyester, wool, or a similarly light and stretchy synthetic material.   Yoga pants often have a very smooth and silk-like finish when worn, but they can also have textured patterns.  Some are solid colors and others with printed patters, words, or novelty graphics.  The most common is probably the color black, tight-fitted, and with an elastic waistband folded over at the top.

Although designed specifically for yoga, the pants are also worn casually by many women.

Types of yoga pants

Yoga Clothing

Yoga pants are commonly used in activities involving physical exercise, such as yoga.  Apparel Search classifies this type of clothing to be part of the fitness fashion category.

There are various types and styles, including the traditional boot-cut and flared yoga pants with waistbands.  The traditional boot-cut and flared yoga pants with waistbands are the most well-known and most popular type, generally used for casual wear, active wear, lounge wear, maternity wear, clubwear, or for physical activities.  The boot-cut/flare yoga pants are often paired with running shoes, flip-flops, flats, or Ugg boots, with hoodies paired and a tank top or shirt tucked inside the hoodie.   

Crop-fitted yoga pants lie above the ankle (similar to capri pants), and are oftentimes utilized for a more flattering, versatile, and dressier look.  They are used commonly as casual wear, activewear, for making errands, lounging around the house, yoga class, or as clubwear on a night out.  

Due to their high elasticity, yoga pants are comfortable enough to be worn during many different occasions. Yoga pants were originally created for use practicing yoga but over the years, due to their increased popularity, they have developed into a mainstream clothing item that can be found in classrooms, gymnasiums, restaurants, shopping malls and everywhere in between.  They have quickly become a staple garment in many wardrobes.   

The flat and fold-over waists are utilized to provide flexibility, comfort, coverage, and style.  The fabrics selected can offer stretch, breathability, and versatility.

Flat and fold-over waist boot cut and flare yoga pants are commonly used as casual wear, workout and exercise wear, maternity wear, making errands, lounging around the house, yoga class, or as clubwear on a night out.  Typically, the more spandex contained in the yoga pants, the more likely they are to be used as exercise wear. The more cotton fabrics are more commonly used for loungewear. 

You may also want to research the harem and cropped harem style pants.

Yoga Pants Stretch

What is the origin of yoga? 

The origins of yoga have been speculated to date back to pre-Vedic Indian traditions, is mentioned in the Rigveda, but most likely developed around the sixth and fifth centuries BCE, in ancient India's ascetic and śramaṇa movements.  Yoga gurus from India later introduced yoga to the west, following the success of Swami Vivekananda in the late 19th and early 20th century.  Yoga in Indian traditions, is more than physical exercise.  It is physical as well as meditative and spiritual.   

In the 1980s, yoga became popular as a system of physical exercise across the Western world.  It is often practiced in conjunction with meditation and spiritual aspects. 

There is a broad variety of schools, practices, and goals of Yoga.   Among the most well-known types of yoga are Hatha yoga and Rāja yoga.

About Fold-over waist Yoga Pants

Fold Over Waistbands are great for yoga as they allow the wearer to change the way the garment fits around their waist. The flexibility with these garments allows for a comfortable fit for most body shapes or sizes. 

Simply folded down allows it to be worn as a high waist or to be pulled over the top of a pregnancy bump.  Fold it down lower, and it becomes a supportive band around the lower hips and bottom.  The wearer may be able to set a ruche to the waistline for a comfort and casual effect.  No more pulling at your waistband during yoga classes.  The full Fold Over Waist can be found on some yoga trousers.

Note: Above we mentioned the term “ruche”.  Here is little lesson on what that may mean.  In the sewing technique ruching a large number of increases are introduced in one row, which are then removed by decreases a few rows later. This produces many small vertical ripples or "ruches" in the fabric, effectively little pleats. The technique of shirring produces a similar effect by gathering the fabric in two parallel rows (not necessarily horizontal), usually by smocking.  Ruching or a ruche, in garment design, ruffling or pleating in fabric for decoration or embellishment.  In knitting, a gather is a generic term for the several methods that draw stitches closer together laterally, i.e., within a row of knitting.

You can learn more about yoga pants at the following retailers:





It may also be a good idea to view some of the yoga pant blog posts on the Fashion Blog.

Yoga Pants

Learn about other types of fitness pants such as leggings.

You may want to also learn about fitness trackers and fitness fashion in general.

If you prefer to do your exercise routine in short pants, you may want to review the compression shorts section for additional options.

Don't forget to find a good fitness top as well.  Can't go to the gym just with the bottoms.

Yoga fitness and fashion has had a serious influence on the world of fashion during the past several years.  Learn about other clothing that has an influence on fashion from the links below.

Do you have a favorite pant style?

You may want to also learn about sweatpants.

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