The Rise, Fall, and Rebirth of Tracksuits


A history of the athleisure trend. 

The Typical Slavic Immigrant (0 BC)
It’s my belief that since the beginning of time, respectable Slavic people have worn tracksuits. On any given day, there are approximately 10 million poorly shaved men wearing an outfit that consists of an Adidas tracksuit, Puma Shoes, and Dolce & Gabbana perfume. My parents, who have assimilated into the Canadian culture, shy away from this uniform, but even so, my dad has his own Adidas tracksuit tucked away in his closet, in case of emergencies. According to every Russian ever, the best place to buy tracksuits is Costco - that’s where I got mine from the first grade until the eighth grade, when I decided I needed an upgrade.

The Juicy Couture Velour Tracksuit (2000s)
When I was finally fed up with wearing Costco tracksuits, there was only one brand that could fill the void - Juicy Couture. The over-priced tracksuit just seemed to smell like money and make everyone feel like they were a part of Paris Hilton’s closest group of friends. I needed to get in on the action. Unfortunately, there was one problem – the cheaper tracksuits at Costco, which my parents compared to the clothes worn by Jesus himself. But eventually I managed to sway their opinion, saying that the quality of Juicy Couture was unprecedented, and soon I too was the proud owner of a Juicy Couture tracksuit.

After a few months, I realized the tracksuit was way overrated. Honestly, it was impossible to get any lunch stains off of it, and I didn't feel anything like Paris Hilton, but more like 2007 Brittney Spears wearing a glitzy outfit to cover-up my lack of direction in life. As I get older, I look back on my collection of hoodies, and find them laughable, but also very soft. Maybe they’ll be good for visiting Brighton Beach on a winter's day, or for when I’m called to model for Victoria’s Secret in my next life and for some reason can’t wear the silky robes provided by the company.

Nobody wears Tracksuits (Let’s say between 2012 to 2014)
This is the period known as the dark ages of tracksuits. They were seen as extremely unfashionable, but everyone still acknowledged them as comfortable and wore them at home, and to hand out Halloween Candy. (Mainly sported by rich housewives who don’t want to wear pajamas all day but want to be comfortable and fit in with their squad of privileged white women).

The Rebirth of Tracksuits (2015 to modern day)
The Kardashians wear tracksuits, so everyone wears tracksuits. Kendall and Kylie Jenner are seen as style goddesses, and everyone wants what they’re wearing. They are often seen wearing workout clothes such as leggings, tracksuits, and sneakers. The two along with Gigi Hadid are the leaders of the athleisure trend (i.e. wearing things that you would usually wear to the gym to do real life things). People think that this is extremely fashionable and no one is ever thought of as looking sloppy or trying to emulate the life of a 55 year old Russian man waiting to buy prescription medication. I personally have my collection of tracksuits, but choose to avoid wearing them due to the overload I experienced during my childhood. However, I have experimented with wearing lulu lemon leggings, a bomber jacket, and white sneakers to try to feel like Kendall Jenner, which I didn't. 

Fashion, Culturemiriam amdur