Gymnast Uniforms

Getting rid of womens team kits with white shorts or bottom half is having a moment here. The England womens football team have done the same, as have Ireland rugby.

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Really? That’s a bit OTT. Leotards I understand, it’s a very close fitting garment and wearing underwear in competition can be risky. But in a sport where you wear loose shorts on top of compression shorts on top of regular underwear. It’s making a point for the sake of making a point

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They’re saying it was the players who wanted it.

I dunno, I’ve never played football in white shorts myself.

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Not going to lie, lots of the white bottom leos look like diapers to me. Never has one been my favorite of a competition.

Now to let the women wear shorts (if they wish) like the men get to so we don’t have to know how good a 16 year old’s wax artist is.

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Eh? They can wear unitards and forget about waxing altogether

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they used quatro for a while and they were the same unlined and very high cut. I thought Alices leo was too high cut on floor but the others were ok. Maybe she just pulls them up.

They ditched Quattro because they were more expensive.

It seems a bit of a non issue though. I can’t think of any white based leotard GB have had?

There was one at Beijing which I really loved and I think there was a London 2012 one. Didn’t Amy wear a white BG leo at Rio in the floor final. I don’t remember one for Tokyo. They seem to bring out one as an option for event finals at each Olympics. Apart from the Olympics I don’t think they use them.

off topic but someone was trying to tell me BG will ditch Gymnova when the contract is up as too expensive. Is that a possibility? They would have to go Spieth I would think as the only other viable option. That would stuff up clubs who have pretty much all changed over to Gymnova now.

I just need Milano the ditch the union flag and colour leos. I’m sick of their current designs even some of their website would be better than what they currently have.

I assume the unitards are more of a hassle than a leo + shorts (or leggings/pants) combo but am open to hearing real life reports. I don’t know why the women aren’t just given the same options as the MAGs. It doesn’t seem to be a safety issue for the men to have something covering their bottoms while doing gymnastics.

And if the rules were slightly adjusted so each member of the team could wear whichever parts of the official kit they needed instead of everyone having to exactly match, that would be nice too.


100% agree, there is no reason the women can’t wear the same exact shorts as the men.

Trampoline the men get shorts but not the women. Tumbling the men get shorts but not the women. They’re doing the exact same events! There’s no reason women can’t wear the same shorts. Especially since FIG is always going on about homogenizing the sport between MAG and WAG.


There are there some really deeply ingrained gender assumptions built into gymnastics, and internalized and reinforced by FIG regularly. It would almost be amusing if it wasn’t so sad.

Speaking of deeply ingrained gender roles and assumptions (and breaking them!), and not to go too far off topic, did anyone else see this article in Slate that was published yesterday?


This is bigger than gymnastics. Plenty of sports have different apparel standards for men and women.

It seems that a problem is being created by fans that isn’t there. Since the introduction of unitards to FIG competition, the German gymnasts have worn them on occasion. Beyond that, I can’t recall anyone else doing so. There are options, the gymnasts aren’t taking them.

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I think it’s hard to say that the gymnasts aren’t taking them when it’s not clear how many clubs or organizations are offering team apparel in those options. Are national team members given an option? how is that option presented? Those deeply ingrained gender assumptions make it difficult to ask for something different when the pressure is to stay within the boundaries of those assumptions.


This feels like another area where BG, but really the sport as a whole, are behind the times. Lots of other sports have seen significant time and money invested into optimising the kit for comfort or performance, but gymnastics seems to only be interested in the aesthetics.

One obvious example, given the demographics of the sport, gymnastics would be ideally placed for developing sports bras, yet if you look at NCAA especially it’s not even considered that the gymnasts might want to wear one.


In the current climate, if NCAA gymnasts wanted sports bras, they’d push for it, or certain schools would anyway. Or at least they’d push against things like backless leotards. It would appear to be a non issue

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Because they might not be offered by all national teams? Because the whole team has to agree to wear it so they all match? Because a skin tight unitard might not be the easiest thing for a female to use the toilet in? If it is an issue made up by the gym fans, there would be zero harm in offering the other options and letting the gymnast make the call on what to wear. They started letting them go sleeveless and a few gymnasts that wanted it took them up on it. Throwing a few more options (as long as safety is considered) hurts absolutely no one and costs practically nothing.

I assume shorts are more comfortable because nearly every trainig video features gymnasts in shorts. Most people in difficult sports don’t add clothes unless the clothes are doing something for them. Most men’s training videos i see, they are shirtless so i infer from that that the singlet (or whatever it is called) is less comfortable than bare skin.

I always liked that Kyla Ross wore whatever she needed no matter how crazy the cut of the ucla leo.


There’s obviously a reason why some gymnasts don’t want to wear the unitard.

Personally, I don’t like black unitards particularly with the more recent focus to have gymnastics meets with a pitch black background. I remember trying to judge the German euros beam winner (forgot her name) and really struggled to see her legs properly.

Given the number of gymnasts who chalk their legs, I can see unitards being unpopular for that reason.

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Wanting to be covered more than a couple centimeters from my crotch doesn’t automatically mean I want to be covered all the way down to my ankles in a unitard; I just want some shorts.

Like makam said, the option should just be available. If my whole team is wearing a red long-sleeve leo covered in crystals and I’m wearing the exact same leo but with a pair of red shorts over the bottom of it, it’s not suddenly confusing what team I’m on. Just like it’s not confusing when gymnasts wear different things in their hair, or wear knee braces, or beam shoes, or tiger paws. Or when they each have different parts of their legs wrapped in a variety of bandages.

It’s not necessary for everyone to exactly match. There’s no group exercise in WAG. If one or two gymnasts on the team would be more comfortable in shorts, it’s easier to add some shorts to the kit than to redesign enough leos for everyone to wear matching unitards. It’s like the FIG made the “well I guess you can cover your legs but only if everyone on the team does it too” rule just to make it more difficult for girls to deviate from the standard leo.