Gymnastics wear leotard vs unitard: What's the difference and why it matters

When it comes to choosing the right attire for gymnastics, the options might seem overwhelming. Two popular choices, gymnastics wear leotards and unitards, often lead to questions about their differences and which one is the better fit. In this blog, we'll break down the distinctions between gymnastics wear leotards and unitards and explain why the choice between them matters for gymnasts.

1. The Leotard: Classic and Versatile

Gymnastics wear leotards are perhaps the most iconic attire associated with the sport. These one-piece garments fit snugly, covering the torso and hips, and end at the upper thighs. Leotards offer a classic look that showcases a gymnast's form and lines. Their simplicity allows for a wide range of movement, making them a versatile choice for various gymnastics routines. Leotards also come in a plethora of styles, colors, and designs, enabling gymnasts to express their individuality while maintaining the elegance that defines the sport.

2. The Unitard: A Seamless Blend of Style and Coverage

Unitards are a relatively newer addition to gymnastics attire. These one-piece garments extend from the shoulders to the ankles, providing more coverage than traditional leotards. Unitards are known for their comfort and sleek appearance. They eliminate the need for separate tops and bottoms, ensuring uninterrupted movement during routines. Unitards for gymnastics often offer a snug fit and come in various designs, offering both style and functionality. Their extended coverage can also provide additional warmth, making them suitable for training in colder environments.

3. Why It Matters: Considerations for Performance and Comfort

The choice between a gymnastics wear leotard and a unitard matters for several reasons:

Movement and Performance:

Both leotards and unitards prioritize movement, but the choice can affect the gymnast's sense of freedom. Leotards allow unrestricted movement in the hips and thighs, while unitards provide full-body coverage. The decision depends on the gymnast's preference and the nature of their routines.

Style and Expression:

Leotards and unitards offer diverse design options for expressing individuality. Leotards are ideal for showcasing body lines, while unitards offer more canvas for intricate designs. The choice can influence how a gymnast presents themselves on the mat.

Comfort and Coverage:

Comfort varies between the two gymnastics outfits. Leotards offer less coverage and might be cooler, but they might also require more adjustment during routines. Unitards provide more coverage, potentially reducing the need for adjustments, and can be warmer. The decision should align with the gymnast's comfort needs.

4. Making the Right Choice: Finding the Perfect Fit

Ultimately, the choice between a gymnastics wear leotard and a unitard depends on the gymnast's personal preferences, comfort level, and the nature of their routines. Whether opting for the classic elegance of a leotard or the seamless coverage of a unitard, what matters most is that the chosen attire empowers the gymnast to perform with confidence and grace.


Gymnastics wear leotards and unitards are both valuable choices, each offering unique advantages. While leotards highlight body lines and offer versatility, unitards provide extended coverage and sleek style. The decision between them depends on factors like movement preferences, style expression, and comfort needs. Whichever option gymnasts choose, the ultimate goal is to feel comfortable, confident, and ready to showcase their incredible skills on the gymnastics mat.

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.