What Should My Child Wear to Gymnastics Class?

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You’ve signed your child up for gymnastics class and now you want to know what they should wear! Depending on your gymnast’s age and gender they will probably wear something different to gymnastics class. However, most girls will wear a leotard. We will go through what gymnasts of each age wear.

The “proper” gymnastics attire for girls is a leotard, and most girls in the gym will be wearing them. You can buy leotards online, at a local specialty gymnastics or dance store or sometimes retailers like Target and Wal-Mart have them. Head over here for where to buy leotards online, and for helpful buying tips. Leotards are great because they won’t catch on anything and they let your gymnast have a full range of movement. Younger gymnasts are usually fine with just wearing a leotard. Older gymnasts usually like to wear shorts on top.

What should Toddler Gymnasts Wear to Gymnastics Class?

toddler gymnast wear to gymnastics class



Gymnastics Leotard

Female toddler gymnasts usually wear just a gymnastics leotard to class. When choosing a leotard for your toddler you might want to consider your gymnast’s undergarments. A unitard (a leotard with the shorts attached like in the picture, also called a biketard) might be more comfortable for your gymnast if you don’t want their underwear or diaper hanging out. Otherwise you can have them wear a regular tank leotard and be OK with their underwear showing occasionally.

Hair Pulled Back

You also want to make sure you pull your gymnast’s hair out of their face. They can wear their hair in a ponytail, bun, braid or any hairstyle where it isn’t going to get in the way.


Shorts & T-Shirt

Boys can wear comfortable shorts and a tshirt to gymnastics class. You want to avoid clothes with any snaps, zippers or buckles that could get caught on any of the equipment.

Here are some of our favorite gymnastics leotards for toddlers:

gymnastics leotards for toddlers

Foxy’s Sparkle On, Pony Leotard: This leotard has a little bit of sparkle overlay on the super fun print of little ponies. This leotard comes in a 4/5 which is similar in size to a CXXS and should fit toddlers that wear sizes 2T-5T. Such a cute print for toddlers!

Happy Hearts GK Biketard: This gymnastics unitard by GK comes in toddler sizes and is a great option if you don’t want underwear hanging out!

Danskin Mermaid Leotard: This leotard comes in small sizes and has a cute mermaid print perfect for little girls! It also comes in other prints great for toddlers.

Danskin Rainbow Tie Die Unitard: This Danskin rainbow tie die unitard comes in toddler sizes and has enough room if your gymnast is still wearing a diaper.

what young gymnasts wear to gymnastics class

What should Young Gymnasts Wear to Gymnastics Class ?

Gymnastics Leotard

Young gymnasts should wear a gymnastics leotard to class. There are several different styles of leotards, although the most popular for young gymnasts is a tank leotard like the girl in the picture is wearing.

Hair Pulled Back

Young gymnasts should have their hair pulled back in a hairstyle that won’t flop in their face and cause safety issues. Popular choices are ponytails, buns or braids.

No Jewelry or Studs

You also want to make sure you don’t wear any jewelry other than stud earrings to gymnastics class. You don’t want anything that can get caught on the equipment.

Here are some of our favorite gymnastics leotards for young gymnasts:

leotards for young gymnasts

Disney Anna & Elsa Leotard: Is your gymnast obsessed with Disney movies? If so, this GK Anna & Elsa Disney leotard might be perfect for you!

Snowflake Designs Laser Tag Leotard: This sparkly gymnastics leotard comes in pink and orange, along with purple and silver.

Foxy’s Bath Bomb Leotard: This multi-colored swirl leotard has a faux gold print running through it. Good quality and reasonably priced- perfect for a young gymnast!

Snowflake Designs Unicorn Leotard: This shimmery pink to light blue ombre leotard is perfect for gymnasts obsessed with unicorns!

older gymnast teen wear to gymnastics class

What should Teen Gymnasts Wear to Gymnastics Class ?

Older gymnasts, teens or tweens, might wear something slightly different than young gymnasts to gymnastics class.

Sports Bra

If they need some support, older gymnasts can wear a sports bra (or regular bra) under their leotard.


Older gymnasts might also prefer to wear shorts on top of their leotards so that they feel more comfortable and don’t have to worry about their underwear hanging out, or any other type of wardrobe malfunction.

Hair Pulled Back

Older gymnasts should also have their hair pulled back so that it doesn’t get in front of their face or catch on any of the equipment.

No Jewelry or Studs

Older gymnasts should also refrain from wearing any jewelry other than stud earrings to gymnastics class.

Here are some of our favorite gymnastics leotards and other gear for teens or tween gymnasts:


gymnastics gear for teen gymnasts

GK Blue Glitz & Glam Leotard: This GK leotard is a popular gymnastics leotard for older gymnasts. It’s a reasonably priced, quality leotard.

GK Pink Diamonds Leotard: This pink GK leotard has a sparkly sequin design that catches the light when you move. The bright color and sophisticated design on this leotard makes it perfect for an older gymnast.

Champion Seamless Sports Bra: This seamless sports bra is a basic comfortable option that offers medium support and comes in a bunch of colors.

Black Gymnastics Shorts: These black gymnastics shorts are perfect for wearing over your leotard. They give older gymnasts the comfort of not having to worry about their leotard moving around.

Headbands: Headbands like these are great for holding your hair back from your face when its in a ponytail or bun.

What should boys wear to gymnastics class?

Boys should wear a t-shirt and shorts with no buttons, zippers or snaps to gymnastics class.

Other Things to Think About

  • Bare Feet: All gymnasts should practice barefoot. Wearing socks could cause slips or falls.
  • Glasses: If your gymnast wears glasses you want to make sure they won’t fall off. Some glasses are made for sports. Other glasses you can secure with a band like this.
  • Hair: Girls or boys with long hair should pull their hair back in a pony tail, bun or braid to keep their hair from getting in their eyes. Having hair fall in their eyes is a safety hazard when it affects their vision. (If you want to get creative with putting your hair up–check out our pinterest gymnastics hairstyles board for inspiration!)

We hope this helps clear up any questions you might have about what your child should wear to gymnastics class. Now that you are ready for class, check out 10 Ways to Get the Most out of your Gymnastics Class! 

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41 comments… add one
  • Jamaly rios November 23, 2013, 6:58 am

    My daughter starts today. She is only 5 yrs old and I have the least bit of idea what she should wear.

    • Ajay Nicholson-sloane April 11, 2019, 3:30 am

      She should wear a leotard and she will be asked to take her shoes and socks of- which is known as being in bare feet

    • Kiwa December 27, 2021, 8:54 pm

      A Leo & gymnastic shorts is perfect for your little one hope she has fun!

  • Jamaly rios November 23, 2013, 7:00 am

    My daughter starts today. She is only 5 yrs old and I have the least bit of idea what she should wear. I know the instructor said a leotard, but I also got a lilitard.

    • Ajay Nicholson-sloane November 1, 2019, 11:22 am


      I would buy a leotard for your daughter. remember when you get to the gymnastics class your daughter will be asked to take any jewellery out, and to take her shoes and socks of- to be in bare feet.

  • MaicKaila Maceintire June 17, 2014, 4:02 pm

    Where a leo or a t shirt and shirt or yoga Capri pants

  • Kristin Black January 24, 2017, 9:31 am

    Thank you SO much for this article!!!! My daughter is about to start gymnastics & i had no idea what she should wear or where to get it. Now i know. 🙂

    • gymnasticshq January 24, 2017, 11:18 am

      So glad it was helpful! And hopefully she loves gymnastics!

  • paula February 28, 2017, 2:06 pm

    Great site thanks

  • Nicole June 26, 2017, 7:46 am

    My daughter is a year and a half and is starting tumbling class. Does she need a leo or is there something else for a toddler to wear?

    • Savannah October 8, 2017, 1:59 pm

      A Leo is probably the best option. You can find Leo’s at target for low prices. She could also wear a unitard. (Which are also available at target)

  • Paula June 26, 2017, 10:41 am

    I agree leotard is better for females in my days it was navy blue pe knickers leotards were just catching on

  • Emily August 8, 2017, 5:33 pm

    In my experience a Leotard and leggings is the best thing to wear to a gymnastics class. Sports bras are not needed because the leo covers and holds a lot. Always bring water and a pair of comfy shoes! THx

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  • Elgin Joyce December 5, 2017, 1:43 pm

    My boy (6 years) is really shy about going barefooted. Can he wear something or should I try to get him over the fear and do it in his barefeet?

  • Elgin Joyce December 5, 2017, 1:44 pm


  • Liam barr December 5, 2017, 1:45 pm

    I did gymnastics barefoot once and really didn’t like it. Floor was too cold my toes felt numb

    • Liam barr December 5, 2017, 1:48 pm

      Also should i be allowed to use the toilet during gymnastics? My instructor told me to hold it in when my bladder was about to burst. Surly thats dangerous?

      • Elizabeth May 16, 2020, 11:27 pm

        That is weird. My Coach always lets me when I need to.

  • Jamie January 14, 2018, 8:11 pm

    My child goes to Dana mannix and 4/5 is not wearing a leotard. Most of them are girls and they just wear t-shirts bras and shorts

    • Debbie March 10, 2020, 8:55 pm

      If they are just trying it out, shorts and t- shirts are ok, but it’s so much better to dress for the sport you’re in, and gymnasts wear leotards. Most sports have a standard uniform, e.g., football players wear pads and a helmet,etc… Your student will be safer, and feel more confident as she dresses in a leotard (think Olympic gymnasts, or look to see what the team girls are wearing.

  • Santa January 24, 2018, 4:36 pm

    Should girls wear underwear and bras

    • gymnasticshq January 24, 2018, 4:50 pm

      they can–but don’t have to 🙂

  • Margaux Ford February 23, 2018, 8:12 pm

    I appreciate the tips on the proper attire for girls to wear to gymnastics class, like leotards and unitard. I enrolled my daughter in a gymnastics class, and we’re looking for the attire that she’ll be using. I think that a leotard paired with gymnastic leggings would also be perfect. I’ll start looking for high-quality products for gymnastics attire later. Thanks for the advice!

  • B March 13, 2018, 10:36 pm

    Thank you article awesome

  • A gymnast April 30, 2018, 11:26 pm

    what is the purpose of hipster shorts?

    • Paula May 1, 2018, 12:07 am

      I agree what is the point of hipster shorts my daughter hates them .

      • Camryn Folkemer January 10, 2021, 10:34 am

        I agree. I’m 10 and I don’t like wearing shorts

    • Sophia June 22, 2021, 8:41 am

      It may be uncomfortable as it was for me, but when you et to the age of your period, you’ll realize how much it will help since girls usually start out wearing thin pads to practice before a tampon. But before that, shorts help hide the underwear and keep skin from tearing it when on the bar. Make sure to be grateful you have shorts!

  • Maureen Elena Laneski September 18, 2018, 10:19 am

    Real, genuine question here: My 3. (Nearly 4) yo boy is starting this week. I was going to get him a Spiderman leotard or something, but I’m reading that he’s fine in shorts and a tank top. Why are girls supposed to wear leotards, then? It creeps me out a little that there’s a difference. In the beginning classes they’ll be doing the same exercises. Why is there a difference? Thanks much for this list!!

    • gymnasticshq September 18, 2018, 11:28 am

      Hi! Yes your boy will be fine in shorts and a shirt and girls at that young age are really fine to wear shorts and a T-shirt too. At the higher levels a leotard is important so it doesn’t get caught on the beam or bars. At higher levels there are different skills so this is less important for boys (although they tuck their tank tops in for the same reason..so they won’t get caught)

  • New beginner gymnastic mom? December 4, 2018, 8:14 pm

    Hey I was wandering what should I do with the blisters she will get

    • Sophia June 22, 2021, 8:37 am

      I’m in level 6, I’m only a gymnast, but we usually put vaseline on our hands to keep them from drying out (let it sit overnight) and once we get to the level it is needed, we use grips(level 2-3). If there are no grips, when the gymnast asks the coach, they will usually put tape on the gymnast’s hands! Hope this helps

  • Hikari Tamae October 12, 2019, 2:07 am

    This was helpful! I am a teen and I am a self-taught gymnast. And I do not know what to wear at home. So this helped me a lot! Thank you!

  • Joan July 28, 2020, 12:27 pm

    Hi . I am a girl from Nigeria. I love gymnastics and I have always wanted to learn. Is there a place where I can be enrolled

    • Kiwa December 27, 2021, 9:00 pm

      It depends if you are a kid or grown up if you are a kid you might like Classic Gymnastics Northwest

    • Kiwa December 27, 2021, 9:01 pm

      It depends if you are a kid or grown up if you are a kid you might like Classic Gymnastics Northwes

  • Juliana Martinez November 25, 2020, 10:30 am


    My daughter (10) is starting gymnastics soon. And I don’t know what to get her. I’m not sure if she needs to wear a sports bra under her shirt or not.

  • Camryn Folkemer January 10, 2021, 10:31 am

    One thing they said for older gymnasts is that they should wear shorts. The thing is you don’t need to wear shorts if you don’t want to .I’m 10 and I don’t wear shorts, and I practice 9 hours a week. Wearing shorts is the gymnasts choice. If they want to wear them, they can wear them. If they do not want to wear them, than they do not need to wear them. SHORTS ARE NOT A REQIURMENT. If they compete, than they are not allowed to wear shorts during competitions any ways.

  • Sophia June 22, 2021, 8:32 am

    I wear spandex shorts to gymnastics, they build up pit fragments really fast, i don’t know if i should keep wearing them or not. And, just another question, should i keep wearing bra pads to gymnastics?

  • Jump April 22, 2022, 12:00 am

    Nice article!
    I think,in a professional sport should wear the professional clothing,like in the gymnastics have to wear the gymnastics leotards.Because the gymnastics leotards can protect your kids do not harms easily.The gymnastics leotards both have good protection and high flexibility,make your kids finish the movement easier.And be careful,when the child wears a gymnastics leotard, no accessories can be worn, unless it is allowed.
    At last,I introduce a good gymnastics leotards brand-TENVDA.TENVDA is a perfectionist, a unique and diverse style, a trusted leader in quality and affordability. Lead the trend and only do the best dance brand!
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