If you've been doing your research and reading up on yoga and its many styles of practice, we're pretty sure you know by now that yoga is not a very complicated discipline. Don't get us wrong -- it IS and CAN BE a demanding practice in terms of patience, strength and flexibility, and discipline. But unlike other forms of fitness and workout regimens, yoga is simple in that the only things you will need to practice it is a good yoga mat and the appropriate workout clothes. Being a modern guy getting involved with yoga means different things than if a girl were to start her practice. One of the ways the sexes differ is when it comes to the right kind of yoga clothing.
The Kind of Clothes You Will Need for Yoga Classes
Since most men learn and do yoga for its physical benefits, it's easy to assume that the clothes you will need won't be any different from the ones you wear to the gym. This is both true and false. It's true in the sense that you will also need clothes that are comfortable, easy to move in, and can absorb sweat properly. However, it's false because not in all cases will your trusty old gym shorts or sweats be appropriate for yoga class. This is simply because yoga involves a lot of stretching and bending, so you will need yoga clothes for men that are very stretchable and won't hamper your movements as you do various yoga poses.
For the bottoms, you have a choice of wearing shorts, or cropped or long stretchable pants whenever you go to your yoga for beginners class. It would really depend on you to decide whether you want to go short or long on your bottoms, but the best way to decide on this is to figure out which type of yoga clothes for men would give you the most overall comfort. Some men like to wear shorts because it feels more cool (as in breathable) for them, which is an especially important consideration if you'll be doing Hot Yoga or Bikram Yoga. While there are men-specific types of clothing in most yoga wear lines, most guys can get by with a good pair of basketball shorts, with cycling shorts underneath to bar from accidental exposure.
As for the tops, men who go to yoga for beginners classes typically wear loose (but not too loose) shirts, tanks, or muscle tees. A loose, sweat absorbent cotton shirt will work, as long as you lift and move your arms around without any difficulty and without the sleeves restricting your movement.
You can also go for sleeveless tops if you want to be able to cool off faster during your yoga for beginners sessions. Muscle tees are recommended if you want easier monitoring of upper body angles and alignment because they fit the body snugly. Yoga clothing manufacturers have developed lines exclusively for men, investing in breathable and soft fabrics that have wicking properties for the quicker drying of sweat as you work out. Of course, guys have the additional luxury over the fairer sex of being able to practice topless, which doesn’t hamper your practice at all.
The Importance of Wearing Proper Yoga Clothes
The most obvious and foremost answer to this is comfort. We all know that. You're wearing these clothes to work out and get sweaty in; not to be fashionable and not to look your handsome self for the ladies (though let's be honest, of course that would be great too). But aside from being comfortable, it's also really important to wear proper yoga clothes for men to be able to do the poses AND hold them while you concentrate on your breathing.
Yoga isn't like doing rounds on the treadmill or boxing - it involves a lot of stretching and testing your flexibility. For example, there are certain yoga poses where you will have to stand with your feet wide apart and lifting your arms while in a lunging position. Your basketball or gym shorts won't work for these kinds of movements because they could limit the angles your body can reach and move in. Another thing is
Factors to Consider When Buying Yoga Clothes
As we've mentioned, comfort is a primary factor to consider when picking out the perfect yoga clothes for men. But just like with any other type of clothing, you also have to make sure you get the right size of yoga clothes for men. Men have this common tendency of buying loose clothing for their workouts. That's fine if you're just doing rounds on the treadmill or playing basketball or lifting weights. But yoga is a different kind of physical and mental exercise and has specific demands that your clothes shouldn't prevent you from meeting.
While it is recommended that the clothes you wear be a bit snug and form-fitting so it's easy to monitor your body's angles, you also wouldn't want to be wearing yoga clothes for men that are a tad too small. If you're decided on wearing a tee for your first yoga for beginners class, then make sure you get one that's just the right size. Meaning, it won't fall to your face if you do yoga poses where you have to bend over, and fits the body well enough to immediately catch sweat.
The Right Clothing Material
Now let's talk clothing material. In a nutshell, these are the qualities of the material you should get for yoga clothes for men: sweat-absorbent, stretchable, durable, and lightweight.
No matter what type of yoga you decide to do, it will involve working up a sweat while standing, sitting, or lying on a mat. Now if you don't want to be slipping while doing Sun Salutations, then you definitely have to pick out yoga clothes for men that are made of materials that can easily absorb sweat. The clothes that you wear should also be stretchable to allow a wide range of movement in your legs, back, and arms. For example, long-sleeved tops and denim jeans are a definite no-no when it comes to yoga clothes for men.
In particular, Bikram yoga is a type of yogic practice that involves doing yoga poses in a heated room. Yoga clothes for men should be sweat-absorbent and comfortable, but they should also be lightweight especially if you've signed up for a Bikram yoga beginners class. Your yoga clothes may be able to absorb sweat, but if it's going to weigh you down, it will make practicing Bikram yoga (or any yoga for that matter) and focusing on your breathing a lot harder. There are certain yoga clothing manufacturers that keep this in mind when catering to their male clients, utilizing sweat-wicking material not only for tops, but for bottoms as well. Although you’ll be hard-pressed to keep your shirt on at the levels of heat that take place in a Bikram class.
Lastly, don't go for cheap yoga clothes for men just because you think you're "just going to give yoga a shot." Invest in good clothes that are durable and will last for a lot of sessions. The practice of yoga can be quite physically demanding, so trust us when we say that your clothes will be well and truly used as you continue with your sessions - which is what you'll be doing anyway once you realize the many benefits you are getting from doing the physical, mental, and spiritual practice of yoga.