Difference between Leggings and Yoga Pants


Most of the people, even many fitness freaks, really don’t know the difference between yoga pants and leggings and consider them as the same thing. It is true that both of them are activewear and are made to be flexible and agile, having a lot in common, both in construction and functionality. But they are different from many respects. Now the question arises, what are the differences? We’ll get to that later on in this article. But first here at workoutleggings.net we’ll describe both of them in a detailed manner.


In the simplest words, leggings can be described as garments worn on the legs that are tight-fitting and mostly cover the entire legs. Leggings are predominantly made out of lycra, cotton, nylon, polyester, or a mix of different flexible fibers. Leggings were originally meant to act as a thermal insulator in the extreme cold conditions by wearing under pants or trousers, but are now also used as activewear for exercise and workout. Leggings are also popular among dancers and acrobats due to the flexibility and agility they offer. Leggings have recently become acceptable streetwear. Leggings, due to their versatility, are often worn with casual garments including sweaters, shirts, sweatshirts, blouses, polos, short dresses, tunics, shorts, skirts, ballet shoes, sandals, sneakers, boots, and heels. They give a relaxed look and are comfortable for everyday wearing.

Leggings once came only in limited colours, as they were meant to be worn under pants or trousers, now multi-coloured and designed are also available to match whatever you are wearing with them.


As implied from the name, yoga pants are bottoms that come with specific features and functions to cater to the requirements of physical activities. They are light, opaque, thick, soft, and flexible and were originally designed keeping yoga enthusiasts’ needs in mind. They are made of spandex, cotton, nylon, polyester, fine wool, lycra, and other natural or synthetic fabrics, sometimes from a mixture of a number of fabrics.

Yoga pants have come a long way from their creation, and are now worn by people for various other physical activities including pilates, martial arts, acrobatics, dancing, and other sports activities that require swift and agile movement and stretching of the legs. Women also commonly wear them as casual wear due to the comfort they offer.

At the start, when yoga got popularity, and the yoga pants introduced, they used to be bell-bottomed, and you could only get them in black colour. This design was developed keeping in mind the confidence, flexibility, and comfort needed for advanced yoga steps and positions. These days, however, you can find them in a variety of different styles, including tight-fitting, boot cut, kundalini, capri, and many more.

So that was a detailed introduction of the two things we are trying to distinguish today. Now let’s have a look at how the two compare with each other objectively.


You must be thinking, what exactly is the difference between yoga pants and leggings. Let’s address that question.

If we compare them broadly, leggings are tight-fitting, elastic pants that cover the entirety of your legs tightly. Yoga pants, on the other hand, are flared flexible pants that were primarily developed for yoga enthusiasts and are now also accepted as casual wear. But there are some other characteristics that make leggings and yoga pants different from each other. Below, we’re going to discuss these differences one by one.


It is true that both leggings and yoga pants are made from stretchy fabric, but the material composition is not the same. Leggings are usually made thinner than yoga pants, as they are designed for more casual functions. Whereas, yoga pants for more rigorous activities are generally made thicker and always in the spandex type, which provides more flexibility for activities like yoga, dancing, etc.


Another difference between the two is the length. Mostly, leggings are designed to cover the entire leg, and for which, it comes in one length that tends to cover the leg from waist to ankle. And if we talk about yoga pants, they are more diverse in length options. They come in various lengths like full length, knee length, and calf length.


Another thing that makes yoga pants different from leggings is its thick waistbands. Yoga pants purposely come with high-rise and thick waistbands so that they can be folded over and provides stronger support to the hip and lower abdominal part. On the other end, leggings typically have thin waistbands, just like regular pants.


As we’ve already discussed, yoga pants were traditionally made in black colour only, but as their popularity increases with the passage of time, they have become much more versatile in terms of colours, prints, cuts, etc. Leggings are also available in various cuts and colour options, however, they are mostly worn in solid colours.


LeggingsYoga Pants
Elastic, soft, tight-fitting.Light, thick, soft, opaque, and flexible.
Usually used for thermal insulation, as well as, a comfier alternative to pants or jeans.Used basically for performing active wear activities like yoga, dancing, etc. However, they are also be used as lounge wear.
Available in a range of different colors and designs.Available in Kundalini as tight-fitting, and other cuts with a variety of colors and designs.
Leggings have regular waistbands.Yoga pants have thick waistbands that provide more support. 


As a matter of fact, many modern yoga pants look like the basic concept of leggings, and many leggings’ designs have taken the form of yoga pants. Still, there are some distinctive styles and characteristics that make yoga pants different from leggings. For instance, you cannot confuse Kundalini style yoga pants with any form of leggings, and they are just different.

Apart from the distinctive material composition and some other attributes, the most significant difference between the two is their usability. If you’re interested in practicing yoga or doing some activity that requires flexibility, then yoga pants would be the right option for you. Where both yoga pants and athletic leggings can also be worn in casual situations, but leggings made for casual wear won’t do the job during your daily session at a gym or yoga studio.

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