The tracksuit has been around for years, with many fond childhood memories of shell suits and women’s velour sets which somehow don’t seem so cool now that we look back. For men particularly, the trend may have dipped, but it has never gone away fully.
Whilst the tracksuit has seen a resurgence in recent years it has not quite found the same popularity as it had in the ’80s. However, we have to go back to the 1960s to find the arrival of what would become an iconic piece of clothing.
The first ideas for a tracksuit came in the 1960s with earlier styles coming complete with stirrups, something which soon evolved to allow for an elasticated cuff. The tracksuit was an athletic choice, with Adidas choosing to pair with Franz Beckenbauer, a German football star, in 1967 to create the perfect sporting outfit.
By the ’70s, tracksuits began to be worn as an everyday fashion choice, even for those who did not participate in sports, although the use of collars and buttons made them more formal than today’s outfits. The ’80s saw the tracksuit craze hit an all-time high, with the popularity of dance, fitness and new, more practical synthetic materials introduced which made them the must-have fashion choice of the ’80s.
The emergence of hip hop and UK football culture in the ’90s proved the tracksuit to be versatile with people from all walks of life wearing them, albeit in different styles. In the 2000s materials such as velour, made it a comfortable, fashionable choice for pop stars and WAGS, who were frequently seen sporting bright pink ensembles.
Break from tradition
The tracksuit lost some of its popularity at the end of the 2000s, and whilst you might not see the full tracksuit in abundance today, there are still elements of it that are included in most men’s wardrobes. From joggers worn with a Farah sweatshirt, like those found here www.ejmenswear.com/men/farah/sweatshirt, to a shell style jacket worn to take the edge off on the cooler summer nights, there are plenty of throwbacks to the traditional tracksuit.
Whilst the traditional tracksuit may not only be reserved for 80’s themed parties, the tracksuit has stood the test of time with new styles keeping it as a staple wardrobe item.