Fitness sure has evolved over the years — and fashion has too. We partnered with CALIA by Carrie Underwood to share our favorite looks from decades past.
I'm always amazed with what people wear to the gym. From barely there crop tops paired with running shorts to flowing yoga clothes, everyone has a style that works for them — and the workout they love. And women always want to look good while working out, which makes these fabulous fashions of the past so fun. While you're loving your new patterned running pants, take a look at fitness fads of the past. You might even find a few looks to steal.
Source: Getty / Dennis Hallinan
The early 1900s were an odd time for fitness and women. Hitting the gym was a new concept, and unique contraptions and gadgets were invented to "shake off" weight and twist torsos into shape. Women wore formfitting clothes — and never had a hair out of place.
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Workout wear from this era was similar in style to trending clothes, with women playing tennis in knee-length skirts. The '40s were a time when it was considered unfeminine to tone muscles or even break a sweat, so tossing a ball in leisure clothes was completely acceptable.
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Women wanted to get in the game in the '50s, but fitness fashion wasn't really a thing. This was a housewife decade, with ladies burning most calories cooking, cleaning, and raising the kids.
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Technology was on the move, and the '60s fitness scene fell in love with portable devices that you could work out with. And this was the decade for formfitting workout wear, which was a big evolution from the '50s.
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You guys, this was the era of the tracksuit — and everyone had one. They hit the scene in the '60s but were really popular before the transition toward the glossiness of the '80s.
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Tight, shiny, and definitely formfitting, the '80s were all about flashy fitness fashion. And it was
the time to let your personality shine — we're talking big hair, leg warmers, scrunchies, belts, dance tights . . . the flashier the better. It was also the decade of the cardio class, which gave you a reason to dress up to work out.
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Step classes were all the rage, which slightly evolved the shininess of the '80s. The look was still filled with leotards over tights, but fun prints and a more steamlined look took over in the '90s. And infomercials were a big thing — remember the Thighmaster?
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In the 2000s, workout clothes evolved into more functional attire. And this decade boomed with yoga studios — and the popularity of the yoga pant.
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Today we're seeing a bit of everything, with workout clothes mashing together with everyday wear, creating a combination of looks that work at the gym — or when heading out to meet friends for casual drinks. And clothes are evolving into items that also help our workout, like breathable materials and ones that include antimicrobial treatments that prevent odor.
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