People nationwide are criticizing a New York Times opinion piece in Sunday’s paper that calls for women to stop wearing yoga pants to the gym.
“Now we’ve internalized the idea that we have to look hot at the gym? Give me a break,” wrote Honor Jones in the piece titled “Why Yoga Pants Are Bad for Women,” which on Sunday became hotly debated on Twitter. “The gym is one of the few places where we’re supposed to be able to focus on how our bodies feel, not just on how they look. We need to remember that.”
In the piece, Jones laments the ubiquity of the tight-fitting workout leggings, asking: “Seriously, you can’t go into a room of 15 fellow women contorting themselves into ridiculous positions at 7 in the morning without first donning skintight pants? What is it about yoga in particular that seems to require this?
“We aren’t wearing these workout clothes because they’re cooler or more comfortable,” she continues. “We’re wearing them because they’re sexy.”
However, the piece led many to voice their support for the form-fitting attire, with some yogis pointing out that the body-hugging design has a valuable function.
As someone who has practiced yoga for years, it’s unbelievable that you think we wear yoga pants because they’re “sexy?!” We wear them because they allow us to maneuver in ways other clothing doesn’t. Alternatively, seeing if you aren’t in the proper position is just as important https://t.co/cy70QBWnrF— kimmie caruba (@kimmiecaruba) February 18, 2018
yoga in baggy sweatpants. makes so much sense!— lisa (@lisarec) February 18, 2018
I did yoga in loose sweatpants once, my toe got stuck in the elastic cuff and I fell forward on my face. Sorry for now wearing yoga pants for doing you know, yoga.— Allison Peterson (@Lucy_1972) February 18, 2018
Some also pointed out what they said were hypocritical opinions in the piece.
“It’s not good manners for women to tell other women how to dress” and yet Honor uses another several hundred words to do just that in this piece. Is this really making or breaking women’s success? If so, then look within at that problem. This is a waste of space. https://t.co/zjhkFFQ2IE— Annie Heckenberger (@anniemal) February 18, 2018
Okay @nytimes. 1) I am sure you had your pick of thoughtful opinion pieces for this Sunday’s edition...and this was your choice? 2) Women writing op-eds about other women’s sartorial choices is bad for women 3) You can have my yoga pants when you pry them from my cold dead booty https://t.co/8RU9l8iVde— Candice Adams (@TheCandiceAdams) February 18, 2018
This article read to me like "I'm uncomfortable wearing a certain thing because it doesn't make me feel empowered. What's more, I'm uncomfortable seeing other people who I don't wish to look at feeling empowered by wearing this thing. Therefore, nobody should be allowed to"— 🧠 Negol (@1988Negol) February 18, 2018
"It’s not good manners for women to tell other women how to dress; [...]. Women who criticize other women for dressing hot are seen as criticizing women themselves"— Dr Danielle Thom (@Danielle_J_Thom) February 18, 2018
*article spends next 600 words doing exactly that*
Others mocked the title of the piece.
Meanwhile, many simply defended their favorite loungewear.
Spending the day wearing yoga pants doing face masks reading my horoscope and boycotting op-eds— Hayley MacMillen (@hlmacmillen) February 18, 2018
I’m 44 and 40 pound over-weight. I wear yoga pants all the time bc they’re comfortable. Im publicly apologizing to anyone that thinks I’m gross 😂— ms. michelle (@michellemccombs) February 18, 2018
A representative from The New York Times could not immediately be reached for comment.
The backlash echoes a controversy that gained notoriety in New England in recent years. In 2016, then-63-year-old Alan Sorrentino wrote a letter published by the Barrington Times in which he proclaimed: “To all yoga pant wearers, I struggle with my own physicality as I age. I don’t want to struggle with yours.” The author, who hails from Barrington, R.I., later told the Globe that the letter was supposed to be sartorial satire: “It was in the face of all this political stuff, with all these really important issues going on, and then there’s this letter about yoga pants,” he said.
But not everyone was laughing. In fact, the letter went viral, and prompted hundreds of people clad in yoga pants to march past Sorrentino’s house.
I see someone has posted yet another op-ed on the perils of wearing yoga pants after 30.— Kodi Kat (@puma_legal) February 18, 2018
Lemme clear this up for everyone:
Wear yoga pants if you want to. If somebody doesn’t like your over-30 dimpled rolls... tell them not to look. Dress for you, not for anyone else