I won’t lie, I’m feeling a bit frazzly at the moment. Serious discombobulation, with side effects such as, but not limited to: sleeplessness, attention loss, irritation, tears and butterfly tum. It’s very hard to focus. If I wrote about what was really on my mind, well I might not quite break the internet, but I would break my own rules about what to write about here.
So instead I shall channel my inner grrrrr, for a brief rant about adverts that come up every frickin’ time I go onto Facebook, urging me to #choosefeeling. Uh oh, I wonder, which chicken of my internet browsing has come home to roost now? Thankfully, nothing sinister, only an attempt to seduce me into buying expensive yoga pants.
On my news feed, I get a series of these ads every day, this bit here is worth reprinting because it’s so bloody ridiculous in the context of trying to sell workout gear:
Feelings have always been important to humans. Listening to the way we feel has helped us to survive, to create meaningful relationships, to interpret the events in our lives. Simply put, our feelings drive our interactions with each other and the world.
Except that, all too often, we ignore our feelings for the sake of what is what is expected or normal. So, we ask you, without limitation or expectation: how do you want to feel?
Maybe answering this question is tough. It isn’t “how do you feel right now?” or “how are you?” Maybe you’ve never thought about how you want to feel before. Or maybe you’ve never thought of your feelings as something you get to choose, like which pair of pants you’ll pull on. We’ve injected this question into the way we design, with the intention of providing more options when you’re choosing how you want to feel—this is engineered sensation.
FTLOG. Engineered sensation indeed. Their engineered manipulation of our feelings, to buy their leggings. Maybe you’ve never thought about how you want to feel before? I reckon most people who can afford to spend £90 on a pair of yoga pants have thought about it a lot. And could wearing expensive leggings change your feelings? Maybe. I’m sure they are great clothes that feel nice to wear; good for you if you want to spend the money. Although it can be extreme as outlined here. This is a growth market here too, for all workout clothes. Two expensive yoga/exercise shops have opened in Glasgow in recent times, although I’m sure they’d seem cheap to New Yorkers. Five hundred dollars for a pair of leggings? Suckers.
Still, each to their own. It’s when yoga classes become a fashion competition, I find it a bit depressing. Firstly, it’s not a sport. You don’t need gear, just something comfy to wear that you can move in. You certainly don’t need technical equipment style fabrics to hit the mat. Mind you, as a general rule you’re advised not to wear normal leggings, as they are see-through on the arse, and ‘brogis’, no loose shorts please. Nobody wants to see the downward dog’s bollocks.
Surely the obsession over wearing the right clothes is the opposite of what yoga is all about anyway? A spiritual practice as well as physical. But as the articles says, people want to look good while they’re doing it. Or giving themselves a near naked trouser sensation, which is something I don’t want to see in front of me at a yoga class. There’s a time and place for that sort of thing. And that includes workout clothes generally.
I have noticed more and more people wearing gym gear out and about. There have always been people badly dressed in tracksuits, but I’m not talking about that. I’m talking about the figure hugging clothes that women are usually only wearing while running, or at the gym. Wee tops and leggings, with big trainers.
So there will be more shops, and more competition, and more expensive brands come along, so that people can stand out. And eventually exercise becomes yet another area of life where we are under pressure to keep up with the Joneses and look good. Aaarrrgghhh. I would pray to the gods of commerce to leave me alone, but it’s too late. The ads will just keep coming.
Frankly, I don’t look good when I’m exercising. I could have trainers by Jimmy Choo and clothes by Chanel and still have a purple sweaty face, thereby cancelling out the fabulosity score. I wear inexpensive gym gear but it’s not held me back, or caused me to have a negative mood experience. There are no mirrors for me to notice the cut of my vest or the style of my leggings. And amen to that. Some do wear the fancy pants, other skanky old shorts and t-shirts, but no-one cares.
Whatever you wear, it’s still going to hurt.
Until next time,