Choosing Women’s Fitness Shorts: What to Look For

Did you know that the clothing you wear when working out can actually make your workout more or less effective? With that in mind, what are some tips to choosing women’s fitness shorts?

Fabric Matters

One of the most important factors in choosing women’s fitness shorts is their fabric content.

Cotton is a popular fabric choice. Cotton is a natural fiber and as such it “breathes” with you. It absorbs perspiration, comes in a variety of weights, and is easy to wash and care for. A downside of cotton knit fabrics is that they tend to lose shape over time, so your cotton knit shorts may develop a “saggy bottom.”

Many styles of fitness shorts are now being made from synthetic fabrics such as Coolmax or Supplex. Many of these fabrics contain polypropylene and have superior wicking qualities (wicking is the ability of a fabric to pull moisture away from your skin). A fabric with good wicking can be desireable in fitness shorts, as it keeps you cool while exercising.

Either cotton or newer synthetic fabrics can be good choices, but avoid rubber- and plastic-based fabrics, which keep sweat from evaporating and can result in raising your body temperature too much while you are working out.

Length and Style Matter

Length and style are also important considerations in choosing fitness shorts. The style and length you choose may be dictated by the form of exercise you plan to be doing. For most forms of exercise (pilates, aerobics, biking, jogging), a stretchy, fitted style of shorts may be best as they will conform to your body and move with you. Looser fitting shorts are generally not as good for working out, as the extra fabric may bunch and get in the way of your workout.

Length of shorts is a personal preference, although it may be influenced by outside factors. For instance, if you are planning to wear the shorts while biking, be sure that the end of the leg doesn’t chafe against your bike seat. In this instance, a longer (perhaps knee-length) short may be most comfortable.

Price Matters

Price is always an important consideration. Generally, choose the least expensive fitness shorts that will still meet your fabric and style criterion. Make a list of must-haves in fitness shorts, and shop with this list. Then you will be able to compare prices and select the shorts that meet your requirements and still don’t break the bank. If you prefer buying fitness wear at a sporting goods store, ask the manager if there are regularly scheduled sales during the year, and you can stock up then.

If you’re content to purchase your fitness wear at a “big box” store such as Target or WalMart, there are frequent sales on fitness wear. Check out the weekly sales fliers and you’ll be able to find a good deal.

Choosing the best fitness shorts for you will help you have a more effective workout and will help you feel better about yourself as you work towards better health.


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