What are the Different Types of Children's Activewear?

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  • Written By: Felicia Dye
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 06 February 2020
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Young people tend to get involved in a variety of activities, such as dancing, football, and swimming. For this reason, there is a wide range of children’s activewear needed because all types of apparel are not suitable for all sports. Examples of such items include leotards, swimming trunks, and basketball shorts.

Indoor and outdoor swimming is a popular activity among young people. As such, swimming apparel has become increasingly easy to obtain. Children’s swimming apparel includes bathing suits for girls. Bikinis, which are two piece swimming suits that leave the stomach area exposed, have also grown in popularity among young females.

For boys, it is common to find a range of swimming shorts, sometimes called swimming trunks. There are some varieties that are tight and that fit similar to underpants. There are many varieties, however, that are substantially longer and looser. A person can generally differentiate between swimming trunks and other types of outerwear by observing the material the shorts are made of and checking to see if there is a pair of underpants sewn inside the shorts.

Leotards often look like a female's one piece swimming suit. A leotard, however, is not designed for water sports. Leotards are used for activities such as gymnastics and ballet. There is a variety of leotards available. Variances among them include materials, designs, and sleeve lengths.


Unitards are a type of activewear that fit similar to leotards. Unitards are used in many of the same activities as leotards. The big difference is that unitards extend down the legs to form a one-piece shorts or pants suit.

Many of the sports that children participate in require them to engage in regular training. Children’s activewear for training include track suits composed of pants and jackets that are specially designed for running. Track shorts are also cut and made from materials that accommodate running. Another popular item is the hoodie, which is basically a sweat shirt with a hood. These are commonly worn over other types of children’s activewear to protect a child from cold weather and rain.

Sports such as basketball, football, and hockey generally require special shirts called jerseys. The jerseys for each sport tend to vary. In basketball, for example, this type of children’s activewear is usually sleeveless whereas football jerseys usually have sleeves.

Special bottoms are usually needed to accompany the jerseys. In basketball, for example, boys usually wear shorts which extend to the knee. In football, however, boys usually wear a type of tight fitting pants, which sometimes have the necessary padding integrated.


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Post 3

@pleonasm - Often folk who make activewear just take all of these things into account together. The clothing will wick away moisture, repel stains, protect from the sun and so forth.

Yes, it can be expensive, but it's usually very hard wearing, so I would suggest selling it on when your kids have all grown out of it.

And your kids don't need many pieces. A specialty activewear shirt or two for when they are playing sports should be enough.

Most kids don't spend all day, every day outside and they don't need a $100 shirt for playing video games inside.

Post 2

@bythewell - While it's a good idea to consider all the options, for the most part parents don't need to invest in expensive specially made UV protection clothes.

Just picking sensible materials is enough. UV won't get through clothes made with darker colors, as the material will absorb the light. And a heavier weave is usually sufficient to block UV as well. Just look up online what you should be using and that should be enough. If it's so hot that your kids can't be wearing a dark shirt, they probably shouldn't be playing in direct sun anyway.

Activewear clothes for kids are expensive enough without adding other things they can raise the price over.

Post 1

One thing to take into consideration is the UV protection offered by the clothes that you are picking out for your children.

People take for granted that if they put on a shirt, that it will protect them from the sun. And for the most part it won't be too bad. Your kids probably won't be burnt on the parts that are covered with cloth.

But the cloth can be pretty thin, and even if your children aren't visibly burnt, they might still have skin damage.

Even if it is slight, over time it can add up. Kids play outside for hours after all, even in high summer when the sun is the most dangerous.

And while it might not

seem like a big deal for them when they are young, eventually that skin damage could turn into cancer.

There are clothes which have additional UV protection without being made too heavy. I would seriously suggest that parents invest in some for when they know their kids are going to be outside for long periods.

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