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Guest Post: A Gentleman’s Guide to Barre Attire

Posted on Jan 22, 2014 by in STR | 0 comments


I get a bit of flack about how Sweat the Runway only discusses women’s fitness wear, so when my friend Diego offered to write a post about men’s attire for barre classes, I gladly said “yes!”  This one is for the dudes, as well as for the lady who is looking to get her man to come to a barre class, but doesn’t know how to respond when protests “I have nothing to wear”.  A bit about Diego: he kills it at the barre classes I teach in my office.  I’m always impressed that when I say “Get six inches lower” in thigh work Diego actually does that.  Check out his post below for some general guidelines on what to wear to a barre class, along with a few illustrations (including a bonus drawing from his daughter!).  

Well, this will be a short column. Given the dressing code at the barre clubs (editor’s note: I think I’m going to start calling them “barre clubs” because it sounds much cooler than “studios”), and the standard tolerance for men’s clothing choices, simply wear a t-shirt and loose fitting pants. Done. See you next week.

I’m the only male participant at a local barre club. The classes are a bit crowded, but the workout is still very intense. So, what to wear when, just because you have facial hair, you will clearly stand out?  I usually prefer having my arms free, so I wear a cotton, form-fitting tank top (is it even called tank top for guys?), with the loose fitting pants mentioned above.

Figure 1: The “Diego”

Well, that’s roughly all that can be done. The dressing code asks for covered midriff and no shorts, and that doesn’t give you many more options. Are capri pants still being sold?

Figure 2: The “Flooded Basement”

As can be clearly seen in the picture, men’s fashion standards have some “hair modesty” in mind. Very hirsute legs will discourage the “Flooded Basement” look.

Outside barre, I regularly work out in shorts, but I have a very hard time finding shorts that are not … long. The U.S. standard for shorts is around the knees, and very baggy, which I find a little “nerdy”. And don’t get me started on beach wear! I guess you can wear shorter, or tighter, shorts, if you are a professional athlete and/or on camera.

Figure 3: The “Olympian”

So what’s left for a gentleman seeking modesty and comfort at the barre studio? I have to say, my friends, not too much. Asymmetry is frowned upon by some scholars…

Figure 4: The “Flo-Jo”
(editor’s note: a world of NO)

… as well as bare scapulae…

Figure 5: The “Magic Criss-Cross Back”
(editor’s note: this will make the teacher very uncomfortable)

… or bare thighs.

Figure 6: The “Jane Fonda”
(editor’s note: the teacher may ask you to leave now)

In my quest for enlightenment, I asked my kid, who suggested a red helmet, with a gap for a mohawk, with some red ball (the Pure Barre ball?) on top. I have to admit, her outfit would match all the requirements.

Figure 7: The Alien Costume

Thanks so much, Diego!  

xxoo Sweat the Runway      smallSneaker

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