When you first think of fitness apparel, what comes to mind? Is it skin-tight leggings and moisture-wicking fabrics? Specially developed uniforms made to increase performance and limit drag? Or do you think about things like socks, shoes, and gloves? None of these answers are wrong, of course, but it shows you the wide array of sports apparel that we see in our modern world.
There’s a saying that you should dress for the occasion, and this is never truer than when looking for fitness apparel. Not only does the right workout outfit help you keep cooler longer and support you through all stages of your workout, it can help increase your confidence and may even allow you to go above your limits in ways you never have before. Having the right pair of running shoes can be the difference between reaching your goals and dealing with blisters, and anyone who has ever worn the wrong sports bra can tell you trying to exercise with ill-fitting clothes can be a nightmare.
But fitness apparel gives you more than just support, it can give you the confidence you need to finish a tough set, or help you gain that extra edge on the competition. While many pieces of fitness apparel have been developed somewhat recently, equipping yourself for the right job has been a part of human history all the way back to the time of the cave men, where clothing was used to fight the weather. Sure, we now use windbreakers, rain coats, and sweat-resistant clothing to protect us from the outdoors, and modern clothing has come leaps and bounds from what it once was, but all this has its roots in a very human need to excel, to push the limits, and to fight against whatever is thrown at us.
Whether you’re looking for a new pair of hiking boots, want to invest in the best pair of leggings for your next asana or are looking for the right pair of gloves to help you push through one more rep, finding the right fitness apparel doesn’t have to be a struggle. That’s why we here at Scoopeo work to bring you the best fitness apparel from across the web, so you can spend less time looking for the perfect fit and more time improving yourself.
A Brief History of Fitness Clothing
It may be surprising to learn that the best clothes for fitness used to be no clothes at all. All participants in the early Olympic games did their sports nude, and while this may seem odd to us in the modern day, they didn’t have the tight-fitting, performance-tested equipment we now have.
Jumping forward to the Victorian era doesn’t get much better. We may have developed some early protection gear for games like football, but when it came to general exercise clothes most people just wore a less-fancy version of their daily clothing. If you were a woman, however, you may shave still worn clothes that were just as movement-hindering as you would have worn every day, and while bathing suits became somewhat accepted in this era, they were far from the sleek pieces of clothing we know today. Everything athletic came with too many layers in this era, and while we started to see protective gear for some of the more popular sports, more often than not people went without, leading to injury.
Things didn’t start to improve until the 1930s when hemlines went up and shorts became appropriate for all genders. During this time period, most athletes wore similar clothes to their everyday clothes, but tailored to make them easier to wear while exercising. Bathing suits moved away from the traditional heavy wool design to synthetic fabrics and lower necklines for women, and the skintight design made swimming for fitness and athletic purposes that much easier.
Many modern fitness staples came about in the years to follow, and as we started to learn more about the science of exercise, these developments soon made their way into our clothing. Soon, even the most basic piece of athletic equipment was engineered in such a way as to make you perform better, and modern athletic clothing keeps improving. With all these advancements, shopping for the right fitness clothing can be exhausting, and feel like you’re constantly bombarded with information about performance, fabric type, and style. That’s why we take pride in offering you the best fitness apparel right at your fingertips, so you can spend less time struggling and more time exceeding.
Get in Gear
Fitness apparel differs wildly depending on the sport you are in, but there are some commonalities. Almost every kind of fitness gear will be made to be durable and stand up to the wear-and-tear that comes from exercising. In many cases, you can find moisture-wicking fabrics that keep you dryer longer and help prevent chafing. Most athletic wear comes in synthetic and natural fabrics depending on your sport of choice, and is specially formulated to prevent things like blisters, chafing, and other uncomfortable side effects while exercising.
A good piece of athletic apparel should be specially designed for it the exercising question. You want to research whatever clothing you may invest in to see if it is made for a specific sport or for more general wear. If you find yourself doing a lot of different exercises, more general fitness apparel may be the right choice for you. However, if you are in a specialized sport or area of expertise, finding clothing and has been specially developed with your activity in mind can help increase your performance, and lower frustration with other pairs of clothing. For example, if you find yourself biking more often than not, there are plenty of padded pants and shorts available to help make your ride more comfortably and prevent any discomfort while exercising.
Another thing to keep in mind is the style of clothing that you choose. While certain types of sports equipment may be developed for general weather, you may want something with shorter sleeves or hot weather or longer sleeves if you will be exercising in a cold environment. After all, heat exhaustion is no joke, and making sure you’re prepared for the weather at hand will keep you going for longer, meaning you don’t have to cut your workout short.
When it comes to choosing more specialized fitness apparel, like your shoes or gloves, it’s always a good idea to see what the recommended activities are for each piece of clothing, and to follow specific guidelines when choosing the right size for you. Hiking boots, for example, should be big enough that you can wear two layers of socks if you need to, and should be broken in before use. Sneakers for running or climbing, on the other hand, are usually made to accommodate one pair of socks, and should fit tightly on your feet in order to prevent rubbing or blistering. The same consideration goes into specialized gloves, or any sports equipment like helmets, knee pads, and other protective gear that you might need. Since these are incredibly specialized in sport and question, should always do your research to see what works best for you. In many cases, professional athletes may have released a statement on what works best for them, and it may be a good starting point to find out what might work for you.
Doing your own research and keeping an eye on your own personal needs can make the difference between a great piece of fitness apparel and a letdown. Before you hop right into picking out fitness apparel, consult with an athletic trainer or other exercise specialist, as they may have tips and tricks that you never thought of before that will help take your exercising routine to a new level.
Remember: there is no shame in trying out a couple different styles of workout clothes before you decide on one, as every style works differently for every person. The most important thing to keep in mind before picking out your next favorite exercise outfit is what you need for your unique situation. While a high-rated piece of clothing may work for a professional athlete, it may just not be the right fit for you.
Once you have your new fitness apparel, remember that it may take some time for your clothes or shoes to break in. It’s important to give your gear the benefit of the doubt at first. After all, it takes time for a normal tee shirt to become your favorite. Still, if you experience chafing or your clothes seem too large or too small, that may be a sign it’s time to swap them out for something new. Trust us, once you have that perfect piece of gear, it will make all the difference in the world and is sure to bring your performance to the next level.
Get to Work
Whether you’re about to run your next marathon or are just turning up the speed on your treadmill, the right workout apparel can make a huge difference in your exercise routine. Whether you’re looking to replenish the basics, or invest in specialized clothing for your specific sport, making sure you choose the right workout equipment for you can help increase your performance and confidence. After all, there is nothing quite like a well-fitting sports shirt or a pair of new running shoes to boost your spirits and give you that extra spring in your step you need to perform. Here at Scoopeo, we work hard to show you the best fitness and lifestyle gear on the market, so you can make sure you perform at your best no matter what obstacles are in your way. So what are you waiting for? It’s time to gear up and get out there!