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What Do Guys Wear to Yoga? [Best Men’s Yoga Shorts & Athleisure Wear]

What do guys wear to yoga?

Men’s athleisure wear has come has a long way since the old days, and that is especially evident in the category of men’s yoga shorts.

Yoga shorts have become a staple in many men’s wardrobes. However, there are many levels of athleisure wear – from casual to almost formal – and since the pandemic and the advent of professionals working much more from their home offices, many men are choosing athleisure wear for their desk work:

  • The new “tracksuits” – coordinated pants and jacket – look strongly masculine and elegant.
  • Many brands of today’s athleisure wear appear crisp, tailored, and highly presentable (those baggy basketball shorts and shapeless oversized t-shirts are now considered a bit dated).

Best Men’s Yoga Shorts

What types of yoga shorts a man wears to workout is mostly a matter of personal preference, but here are some guidelines that you might find helpful.

One of the physical benefits of doing yoga is that you increase flexibility and that means your yoga shorts have to be flexible too and made from stretch fabric. (They even make yoga shorts for men who are more largely endowed with a separate pouch liner inside the shorts that separates the banana from the plums – to prevent sweat from making everything stick together.)

Here are some brands of yoga shorts that many men are wearing and finding helpful during their yoga practice:

  • Lululemon
  • Birddogs
  • Ten thousand
  • Brutal Buddah (with pouch separation)
  • Hylete
  • BYLT
  • Vuori

What Guys Wear to Yoga

To know what men’s yoga clothes to wear to yoga classes, you first need to understand what type of yoga workout you’ll be practicing.

For example, hot yoga (such as Bikram Yoga or Moda Yoga) might require something different than, say, a Yin yoga floor stretch class in an air-conditioned room.

In hot yoga, you get extremely sweaty (intentionally) and so you need to wear something made from microfiber:

  • For loose shorts, basketball shorts might be better than rugby shorts because when you do tree pose and place your foot on your opposite upper thigh, the fabric there will help you hold the yoga poses without your foot slipping.
  • For tight shorts, compression shorts are currently popular and help to reduce muscle fatigue and improve muscle oxygenation and vein health.
  • Alternatively, you can wear leggings (tight compression pants) or a loose pair of yoga pants.

Whatever yoga shorts you wear to exercise, you want them to allow for a full range of motion and complete freedom of movement.

Dane Findley wearing best yoga shorts as an example of what guys wear to yoga.
Author Dane Findley is wearing yoga shorts by Lululemon. Dane earned a master’s degree in Psychology from Pacific Graduate Institute. His past professional adventures include being a Therapist and Discharge Planner at a Dual-Diagnosis Hospital Inpatient Treatment Program, Digital Marketing Director for a real estate brokerage, and decades spent as a professional fitness and Pilates trainer. Today, Dane is a Healthy-Lifestyle Advocate and he curates the popular Quality of Life Newsletter – a free weekly update for creative types who want to increase their daily joy. Currently, he’s facilitating the new online course “Silver and Strong: How to Get Super Fit After Age 50,” which helps people learn to eat for lean strength.

These tips can further help you to have a good experience and better results from your yoga workout:

  • Bring your own gear (it’s more hygienic to bring your own yoga mat, long towel, hand towel, and water bottle) and to wear a base layer of synthetic materials or compression garments that allow your skin to breathe and wick away sweat from your skin – over which you can wear a loose, organic cotton t-shirt that can be removed before class begins (or, in the case of hot yoga, many men opt for no shirt at all).
  • The elastic on the waistline of your yoga shorts should be tight enough to prevent your shorts from falling down and exposing your butt crack, but not so tight that it pinches your skin and causes the fat above the elastic to push out in an exaggerated way (which would interfere with some of the side stretches).
  • Finally, and this is important, if you’re going wear a shirt,the shirt should be fitted and made from a breathable synthetic fiber; otherwise, when you do downward dog (and you will do a lot of downward dog poses in class), you’ll have wet cotton fall down in front of your face and mouth and block your airway. It’s a rookie mistake. Old-fashioned, regular gym clothes don’t usually work well for men in yoga class, which is why all of the activewear brands today offer fitted, microfiber shirts, yoga shorts, leggings, and track pants.

Fitness Closet: How Men Organize Athleisure Wear

What men wear has changed, and that means closets can be organized differently today than they were 20 years ago. What follows are useful suggestions on how a man can efficiently organize his closet – a closet that likely has more fitness gear, athleisure wear, and gym clothes than it does business suits.

“Athleisure is a higher-end genre of casualwear that integrates athleticwear — workout clothing focused on moisture-wicking and mobility — with a more distinguished, tailored streetwear. Popular men’s brands include Lululemon, Vouri, Todd Snyder, Adidas, and Puma.”

How the Suit Closet Gradually Became the Fitness Closet

Every person’s circumstance is different, but if you’re a health enthusiast who has been living the fitness lifestyle, it’s likely that over the years you have accumulated a fair amount of gym clothes and athleisure wear.

Some men used to wear suits to work, depending on their profession.

Over time, fewer professions required suits.

Many of those professional trades you think of as hidebound – such as finance, legal, real estate, and medical – have long since switched from formal suits to business casual. This is doubly true in geographical areas that experience year-round fair weather.

It used to be that a well-appointed man would spend more time, energy, and money on his professional clothes than his fitness wear:

  • Casual wear for men meant perhaps one pair of favorite jeans, a gray pair of 10-year old sweat pants, and several baggy t-shirts.
  • Today’s athleisure wear and gym clothes for men look much different than our father’s old knockabouts. They are better fitted and less boxy. They are crafted from higher quality microfibers.
  • A mature, healthy man today is probably more likely to have a well-appointed fitness closet that holds more atheisure wear than business suits.

Benefits of Organizing Your Athleisure Wear and Yoga Shorts

Many people have a closet full of clothes, yet wear the same 3 outfits over and over. This means most of all the other clothes were probably a waste of money:

  • The solution to this is to become a hardcore minimalist and donate all your other clothes to charity (except your 3 most-worn outfits).
  • Or, as an alternative, you can keep your clothes – and instead organize your closet so that you can actually see and easily find what you need in a matter of moments.

Pin this article to look at again later:

athleisure wear workout wear

An organized closet allows you to easily rotate your inventory.

Just like at the grocery market when the stock clerk puts the new cartons of milk behind the older cartons of milk, so, too, your closet can rotate its own inventory. The clothes you’ve gone the longest without wearing can appear on top or upfront.

“When your grandfather was your age, he might have had only one tracksuit or one pair of gym shorts. Today, men own more gym clothes, yoga shorts, and athleisure wear than men of the recent past.”

The Problem with Dresser Drawers for Athleisure Wear

Dresser drawers are great for socks and underwear. Whether or not dresser drawers are good for anything else depends on how many clothes you have and from what fabrics those clothes are made.

If you have all-cotton t-shirts and don’t mind fold marks on your t-shirts, then they can be folded neatly and stored within dresser drawers.

athleisure wear yoga gym clothes

Many of today’s t-shirt styles are tailored with a V-shaped silhouette and are made from wicking, anti-stain/anti-odor microfibers. The fabrics of these shirts are so lightweight that they can be hung easily – usually without creating creases or bumps in the fabrics from the hangers.

Over the years, I’ve realized that hanging up my workout t-shirts and tanks is what works best for me.

Additionally, instead of stuffing all my yoga shorts into dresser drawers to be wrinkled, I have found it works better to store shorts in stackable, see-through containers on my closet shelves.

You can use a label maker (or post-it notes) to create categories of your athleisure wear and gym clothes. Here are examples of possible categories:

  • yoga shorts (classic cut)
  • outdoor workout shorts (short cut)
  • longer yoga shorts (lined)
  • longer yoga shorts (unlined)
  • cardio shorts
  • swimsuits
  • loungewear

As I fold clean laundry, the freshly laundered clothes are placed at the bottom of each corresponding storage box. This helps to ensure that I wear all of my athleisure wear and gym clothes regularly (and not just the same 3 outfits over and over).

yoga shorts organized
Clear storage boxes with printed labels help make getting dressed easier and faster, especially when compared to sorting through tightly packed dresser drawers.

Final Tips for Arranging Your Athleisure Wear, Yoga Shorts, and Gym Clothes

There’s an old adage that “how you do anything is how you do everything.” Having an organized fitness closet will help you show up for your workouts energized and on time. It sends a message to your subconscious that fitness and self-care are important and to be prioritized.

Here are some final tips regarding what guys wear to yoga:

  • Keep your athletic footwear in neat rows with the shoelaces tucked inside (I personally don’t like to store my shoes in boxes because I like my footwear to air out between wearings).
  • If your dresser drawers seem to always become a jumbled mess, consider using drawer dividers to help everything stay in place (they can be purchased inexpensively at home supply stores).
  • Mismatched hangers in lighter shades seem to blend in with the shirts and make the closet appear more cluttered. Over the years, I’ve found that matching black hangers help the clothes stand out visually.

In yoga classes today, the environment tends to be supportive and non-competitive, so you can choose whatever yoga shorts feel like the right size for your unique body type. There is a lot of stretching in a yoga class, so the best choice of what to wear is usually what feels most comfortable.