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What is sportswear?

December 08, 2021 6 min read

What is sportswear?

This article is an automatic translation from our Original French blog. This text may contain translation errors. Thank you for your understanding.

Sport often requires specific clothing to feel as comfortable as possible. However, when sport meets fashion, a very special trend is born: sportswear. So if you want to find out more about sportswear, we invite you to read on. Because today, let's put sportswear in the spotlight.


While sportswear has a limited use, to say the least, there is a certain craze for its diversion. Sportswear fashion consists of more casual outfits, which allow for all sorts of activities. It is important to remember that city clothes were the most popular at the time of the development of sportswear.

Indeed, sportswear has its origins in the 1920s: with the influence of the Olympic Games, the idea of clothing suitable for various leisure activities became more and more widespread. This craze was always moderate, until 2001, an important date in the history of sportswear. It was then that fashion artist Yohji Yamamoto collaborated with Adidas to create a mix of sport and fashion. Since then, famous brands have taken these styles and added their own characteristics: Nike, Fila, Puma... and the craze has not died out since!

All these brands are known for their sportswear: sweatshirts, jerseys... However, you only have to go out into the street to find many references, even though most of the people who wear them don't practice sports. And we should not confuse sportswear with streetwear. Indeed, where sportswear fashion comes from a more relaxed environment and stems from sports such as tennis or golf, streetwear fashion comes straight from the suburbs, and corresponds more to practices such as skateboarding or hip-hop.


Nowadays, sportswear is open to everyone. So, whether you play sports or not, don't wait to wear sportswear if you like it! The challenge of sportswear is to give chic and elegant clothes a casual look. The most famous brands nowadays were once reserved for sports use only. Today, they can be found in every wardrobe, and even alongside the greatest designers, as in the case of the collaboration between Jordan and Dior!

The most affected public is still young, but more and more people are getting into it in general. Nowadays, feeling good about your body is also a question of clothing style. Sportswear is a trendy alternative to street fashion and allows you to feel good while looking good. One more thing you should know is that sportswear is for women as well as for men!

Furthermore, brands from all over the world have recognised the popularity of sportswear. As a result, you can find sportswear almost everywhere. It is probably one of the most accessible styles!


We have briefly talked about the difference between sportswear and streetwear. Let's talk about other trends that are similar to sportswear. Among them are two trends known as activewear and athleisure. So what are these two trends?


The activewear clothing trend represents, in a way, the same state of mind as sportswear. Indeed, the concept is rather simple: to appropriate a style through one's outfit while being able to perform. It is therefore a hybrid between urbanism and sport, with outfits that are more likely to be worn during activities such as yoga or even running. As you can see, activewear clothing is light, sweat-proof and rather close to the body. Their main objective is to be functional, whereas athleisure fashion is more concerned with the aesthetic side. Wearing activewear is a way of transferring your lifestyle to your clothing style. For example, the sportswear that someone might incorporate into their style will be the same for going to the gym as it is for sitting back and enjoying a quiet drink after their session. It also means that sportsmen and women do not have to change their clothes before or after a sports session.

This is a more versatile style of clothing than the others, capable of meeting a wide range of expectations! In addition, the clothing will be designed to meet the specific needs of different sports. It's true: sportswear, and more particularly that designed exclusively for activewear, is equipped with special finishes to facilitate the practice of sport and make movements less restrictive for the body. Activewear is therefore both high-performance and comfortable clothing, designed to be in top form at the gym. The materials used to make the garment are also selected so that sweat is quickly evacuated, allowing the skin to breathe.


In contrast to the previous trend, athleisure is more social than sporty. It is a clothing trend that is not necessarily about wearing leggings, but rather about finding a compromise. It should also be taken into account that athleisure finds much of its inspiration in the sports world of yesteryear, in much the same way as sportswear fashion did. However, athleisure clothing, which was originally designed for sports such as golf or tennis, has gradually been adapted for formal occasions. Athleisure fashion can therefore be considered to be at the intersection of sports style and casual streetwear. Of the three fashions, namely sportswear, activewear and athleisure, athleisure is the one that is most suitable for those who lean towards a more sober but sporty style. From a trend perspective, it fits in well with a healthy, zen-like lifestyle, as it depicts a body practicing sports while maintaining other personal hobbies. Athleisure is very popular with fit people, or at least those who want to become fit! Rather than being extremely sophisticated and chic, athleisure focuses on simplicity to meet the needs that any active person might encounter in everyday life. In fact, one of the emblems of athleisure are sneakers. This is a good way to represent this fashion, because shoes are one of the most important aspects of feeling good when you go out. Bad shoes don't support the body properly, damage certain joints, and therefore increase the risk of injury. So athleisure fashion is all about feeling good in your shoes!

If you find the distinction between sportswear, activewear and athleisure to be a fine one, let us guide you through the last part of this article.

Strong Work Sportswear


After this long presentation, let's not delay in presenting you with different ways of wearing sportswear. First of all, to emphasize a detail of the previous point, we would like to stress that sportswear is accessible to absolutely everyone. Therefore, even if you are on a tight budget, you don't need to redo your entire wardrobe to be able to wear sportswear. Similarly, there is no point in dressing only in big brands. As we said earlier, sportswear has taken over a large number of brands.


Build your outfit around a hoodie or jacket:
Wearing sportswear doesn't necessarily mean wearing only trainers, jogging suits, or even a fitness T-shirt. Rather than going for something too sporty, look for the in-between that will give your outfit a casual look. Opt for a jacket or sweatshirt as the main and essential piece of your outfit. Another trendy sportswear item is the bomber jacket. It adds that sought-after sporty yet casual touch. This style of outfit is also ideal for feeling confident and therefore gaining confidence.

The T-shirt dress, a sportswear trend:
The T-shirt dress can give your outfit a chic edge, while keeping that sporty spirit. It also allows you to keep a feminine look while creating a sporty atmosphere! With this kind of dress, a tote bag is a perfect match. Another thing that can go well with a t-shirt dress without being out of place is trainers.

Choose a sports jumper:
Whether you're on your way to work, school, enjoying a walk around town, or celebrating something, there's nothing better than a sporty jumper to sport a casual yet chic style. Even better, pairing this top with jeans and classic shoes will keep your outfit from looking too sporty and balance it out! If you're a woman, there's another way to add a touch of femininity. Leave the jeans aside and wear a pleated skirt with your jumper. This combination is well known to sportswear fashionistas, but still works.

Go for jogging trousers or a short skirt:
As sportswear, jogging pants are ideal if you are planning an activity where you want to be comfortable. A short skirt or pleated skirt will add some tennis style to your outfit. However, you can still wear them to run errands during the day and still look smart.

Adding a little casual to your outfit:
We can't say it enough, but the hallmark of sportswear is a casual style. So you need to make your outfit feel relaxed and casual. To do this, accessories are welcome: trainers, backpacks and baseball caps make excellent pieces to complement your sportswear! And while these accessories add a certain touch to your outfit with their trendiness, they also have a real advantage because they meet the very basics of sportswear. Indeed, apart from their trendy aspect, these accessories are also functional and allow you to keep your comfort throughout the day!