The Sports Edit's guide to athleisure

What is athleisure

Ah, athleisure. It’s a phrase that’s been at the forefront for a while now, and as with any trend, its interpretation can be pretty subjective. Find out how it came about, where its heading and get a few pointers from our style team on how to make it work for you.


Let’s go back to basics. The term 'athleisure' is a mash-up of the words athletic and leisure. Basically, if you can wear it to a workout, but also to brunch or even at a festival - you can call it athleisure.

Athleisure festival fashion style

TSE ambassadors Tara Margulies and Charlotte Holmes


One key driver of the trend is the growth of people who embrace healthier lifestyles. From yoga to HIIT - strong and healthy is cool. More young people are switching a night out clubbing for a hangover-free dance class at their favourite studio, and are similarly more interested in checking out the latest 'superfood' restaurant than grabbing a drunken kebab on their way home.

Social media is certainly proliferating the 'healthy living' trend, and it has become the norm for people to post snaps of their rainbow salad along with a sweaty selfie post HIIT class. While we don't always advocate those who perpetually projecting clean living (#balance #nofilter guys!), encouraging others to live more balanced lifestyles from time to time has to be a good thing. Because balance is key, and the beauty of athleisure is that it epitomizes that approach. What could be better than style that transcends both sweaty workouts and bottomless brunches with your mates?

Athleisure feeds the demand for clothing and accessories that are going to fit around our increasingly hectic lives that much easier. Gone are the days of lugging a heavy gym bag to and from work - athleisure allows you to style elevated lycra, relaxed layering and premium sneakers into your work wardrobe, to take your from office to studio and beyond in style. Similarly, activewear is fast becoming a staple of festival fashion, as people look for comfortable yet striking styles that will take them from morning yoga to partying in the forest at Wilderness.

Bella Hadid Athleisure sports style


With the growth of social media we now have access to the day-to-day wardrobe of our favourite celebrities. Gone are the days where we would only see what they wore on the red carpet - we can now see what they wear en route to their early morning yoga class, lunch dates and work projects too. Kendall Jenner, Hailey Baldwin and the Hadid sisters are often snapped between shoots in their metallic or wet-look leggings and sporty jumpers - further proof that you don’t have to sacrifice style to seek comfort.

Tip: If you want to really ‘leisure’ up your sports look a la Bella Hadid (pictured above), then chuck on some chunky jewellery and skinny frame sunnies.

Athleisure fitness influencers

Aside from the A-listers, a massive driving force of athleisure style are those Instagram accounts you follow for fitness inspo. The faces behind these influential accounts often live a more relatable lifestyle than your usual celebrities and are at the forefront of championing and evolving athleisure style. Fitness influencers Pip Edwards, Cat Meffan and Carly Rowena are just some of our favourite advocates of the trend, providing us with effortless 'atheisure' inspo on the regular. Check out them out alongside our other favourite accounts for fitness fashion here.


Fortunately there is now a plethora of choice on offer for consumers, that goes beyond your obvious sportswear choices. We have seen high street brands launch their own sportswear ranges, often with low price points and a strong fashion focus. Then at the other end, well-known designer brands are increasingly including trainers and relaxed sportswear into their collections.

In addition, the movement has encouraged a whole host of interesting collaborations. Collections such as adidas x Stella McCartney have perfectly executed a stylish solution for athletic leisure wear. With the technical know how of respected sports brands and the style expertise of haute fashion designers, such co-labs are onto a winner.

Ivy Park UK

Another brand evolving the rules of athleisure right now is Beyonce's her Ivy Park sportswear collection. The combination of Beyonce's golden celebrity status with stylish, affordable sportswear has really opened athleisure up into the mainstream. From hooded sports bras to tracksuits with heels, this new breed of athleisure is really pushing the fashion boundaries with its 'anything goes' ethos.


With a whole host of options from the world's finest activewear brands, we definitely don’t struggle for inspiration when it comes to sports style. Athleisure is us though and through, from class to work to play - but we all work the trend in our own way. Get inspired by our TSE staff picks:

Amie Trewin Hutt

Amie - Marketing Manager


P.E Nation Summer Catch Tee, Alo Yoga Elevate Legging and S'well Calacatta Bottle

What I love about athleisure:

“First and foremost, comfort! I've always been a fan of relaxed styles, and the athleisure trend is effortlessly cool. And, it’s so damn versatile. From commute, to work, to class, to drinks... it fits into my lifestyle perfectly.”

Favourite athleisure brands:

Alala, P.E Nation and Alo Yoga.

Molly McDonald

Molly - Ecommerce Executive


P.E Nation Rookie Track Pant, Ultracor Collegiate Tee

What I love about athleisure:

“The cross between performance and streetwear allows for everyday clothing to finally be both a total time saver and more importantly comfortable - sitting in tight trousers or jeans all day is the worst!”

Favourite athleisure brands:

PE Nation, Koral and Beyond Yoga

Katy Wilkinson

Katy : Buying and Merchandising Executive


Michi Matrix Bustier

What I love about athleisure:

“It’s the crossover of my two favourite things - sport and fashion. It makes dressing in the morning easier (gym-drobe!) and justifies the purchase when your crop top can be used from gym to street to club.”

Favourite athleisure brands:

Michi, Alala and Ultracor.

Charlotte Watts

Charlotte - Digital Marketing Intern


P.E Nation Leggings, Alala Trix Jacket

What I love about athleisure:

“I love that you can wear the comfiest clothes and not have to sacrifice on style. Wearing an outfit that looks good but feels tight or uncomfortable is just not cool - athleisure gives us the best of both worlds!”

Favourite athleisure brands:

Ultracor, PE Nation and Alo Yoga

Crystal Matarira

Crystal - Sales Advisor


Koral Cropped Pant, MZ Wallace Backpack

What I love about athleisure:

“It’s so versatile, you can wear it anywhere! It’s comfortable, practical and makes you feels good."

Favourite athleisure brands:

Koral, adidas, Alala

As you can see, the beauty of this trend is how versatile open to interpretation it is able to be. It’s so easy to rock this stylish trend in your own unique way. And the best part? You can feel as comfy as if you were in your pyjamas all day!

Love the trend? Make sure to check out our dedicated athleisure collection >