Active wear 101: How to choose your workout gear


There’s no doubt that exercise is good for us, both physically and mentally. Whether it is running, walking, pumping iron, Zumba, yoga or anything else, keeping fit has a plethora of benefits for your physical and mental health. But did you know that wearing the right fitness clothes is the difference between a good workout and a bad one, including how you feel after you’re done? Besides how functional active wear is, it also contributes to how confident and good you feel about yourself, giving you that extra motivation on days when you’d rather sit on your couch than get a workout in.

So elevate your workout by investing in the right workout clothes by following these simple-to-follow tips.

Tips for picking the best workout clothes:

  • Fit is the most important: The correct fit is the first thing you should look out for in your active wear. At the end of the day, what matters is getting a good workout, and regardless of how good a garment looks, if the fit is wrong, it will only hinder your exercise routine. Too tight means it will constrict your movement and too loose means it will get in your way while you try to move. So you want to go for outfits that feel the most comfortable. When you try them on, move around – sit, squat, walk around and see how it feels.
  • Fabric quality: As you will be moving around and sweating in your active wear, fabric quality will make a difference. Bad material causes chafing and skin irritation. Look for high-quality fabrics that are lightweight, comfortable and super stretchable.
  • Activity: Have you noticed how there are many types of the same garment available? For example, if you’re looking for workout pants, you may find sweatpants, joggers, yoga pants, running tights and even compression pants. The same goes for most gym wear for women and gym wear for men. This is because different activities require different types of clothing to give us the best exercise experience. So don’t forget to look for clothing that reflects the activity you are choosing them for.
  • Location matters: Are you working out indoors or outdoors? Is it hot or cold? Breezy or still? The weather and location of your workout will matter a lot when picking your workout outfits. Make sure to layer up for the colder weather if needed. 
  • Consider your innerwear: Seamless underwear and sports bras are ideal for exercising. Seamless panties or boy shorts in a soft cotton material won’t cut into your skin and keep you comfortable through your routine, while sports bras will provide the support your breasts need due to the movement. Sports bras also reduce your risk of injury.
  • Breathability: From spandex to cotton, there are many different fabrics used for active wear and athleisure wear alike. Working out causes the body to sweat – the body’s natural response to try to cool itself down, which is good because it means you’re pushing yourself. But having your clothes drenched in sweat halfway through your workout will change your body temperature and make you uncomfortable. This is where breathable fabrics that are light, moisture-wicking and odour-controlling come into the picture. They dry quickly and help regulate your body temperature so you can focus on your exercises.
  • Main features: Unlike everyday clothes, active wear boosts your performance, helping you push yourself while you exercise, which is why they are made with extra features. This includes compression, stretchability, thermal insulation, waterproofing, durability and even UV resistance. Be sure to read the label carefully and find exactly what is suitable for your exercise regime to get the most out of it.

Now that you have an idea of what to look for when buying workout clothes, here are some staples every fitness enthusiast would want in their wardrobe.

Active wear essentials you need

Elasticated leggings

These leggings focus on stretchability. Their skin-hugging silhouette and stretchiness make them a versatile pair you could use for everything from a run in the park to a gentle session of yoga at home. The full length also makes them ideal for colder weather. Kappa’s leggings go a step further by giving you that extra oomph of style!

Tracksuit

This two-piece outfit is the epitome of comfort. You can wear it while lounging at home or when you go for a light walk outdoors. Tracksuits are also used to keep your body warm post-workout, so your body cools down slowly and naturally, so you can avoid muscle cramps or injury.

Latin Quarters’ pink tracksuit in a soft furry finish is what you need, especially in the winter months. It also doubles up as stylish athleisure wear!

Puffer jacket

Known for its lightweightedness, water-resistance and warmth, puffer jackets provide all the weatherproofing you need if you work out outdoors or if the weather is unpredictable. The yellow jacket from Puma, with its mock collar and full sleeves, lets you show off your sportswear style too!

Sports bra

As mentioned above, sports bras are essential as part of gym wear for women. They provide additional support, reduce breast pain and help avoid any discomfort while exercising. The colour-blocked bra from Triumph with a zip on the front is easy-to-wear and does the job nicely.

Sports shorts

On warmer days, you can always turn to sports shorts that will keep you cooler while giving you the freedom you need to exercise. Kappa’s sports shorts in various colours have an elasticated waistband for added comfort.

Sports crop top

Sometimes a crop top is better than a longer one as it stays out of the way and doesn’t restrict movement in any way. Try Puma’s black V-neck crop top for style and versatility.

Joggers

As the name suggests, joggers are great for jogging or a light run. The soft material is comfortable to wear for long periods and increases mobility. They are also super stylish for when you want an athleisure wear look. Kappa’s drawstring sports joggers strike the right balance of both.

Sports t-shirt

Perfect to be paired with shorts, tights or joggers, sports t-shirts are lightweight and moisture-wicking. Kappa’s got a fabulous range of t-shirts, like this orange typographic print t-shirt.

Sport jacket

For days when a puffer jacket is too much, a sports jacket like this lilac purple one from Kappa will keep you warm. You can also use it to keep yourself warm after your workout.

Full-length tights

These pink tights from Kappa are made for gentle exercises like yoga or stretching. The soft cotton blend fabric will feel like it’s one with your skin.

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