Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Of skirts and shorts

I forget if I've mentioned it on this blog before, but I do a little bit of running in my spare time. I run a few miles a few times a week. Now that it's getting warmer, the long running pants I got for Christmas weren't cutting it. So, me being me, and generally avoiding pants, and entirely shunning shorts, asked on a running forum for advice and recommendations about running skirts.

I must say, I was rather surprised by the response I got. The majority of responses were people asking me why shorts weren't good enough for me! Twelve people responded. Four of them were helpful as to where I could buy or how I could make a running skirt. Two responded to other people in the thread and were neither helpful nor unhelpful. The remaining six questioned why I didn't just wear shorts, told me wearing a skirt was a bad idea, and so on. The tone was, surprisingly, pretty defensive.

Does it really threaten these women that much if I wear a skirt while running? I didn't say shorts were evil. I didn't say they were immodest. All I said was that I prefer skirts to shorts and pants. Surely a modern "enlightened" woman should be able to be secure in her own choice of clothing (workout gear, no less! a place for function over form if I've ever heard of one!) without having to convert everyone else to her own preferences.

Now I'm wondering if this is just a small example of an aversion to things that are traditionally feminine. Is the reaction a reaction to me wearing a skirt to run in, or me wearing skirts in general? I haven't done much discussing of my clothing choices with the general public. What do other people think? For those of you who primarily wear skirts, have you received negative feedback about that? For those of you who don't, do you think other women wearing mostly skirts is weird, or wrong, or just impractical, or something else? Is this, in fact, a societal trend, or did I just run into a cranky bunch of people? Share any thoughts you might have on the subject!

3 comments:

K2 said...

I see women in my neighborhood running in skirt/short combos that look like modern tennis skirts. I say wear what you are comfortable in. Ignore the cranky people.

Andrea said...

I thought that running skirts were gaining in popularity! I have a few -- the kind with built-in spandex shorts for modesty. They're short skirts, but not super-short.

I think there are actually more choices out there for running gear than ever! I've been running regularly since I was a kid -- used to be you could only find super-short running shorts, which I never liked. Now you can find shorts in a variety of lengths, plus skorts and skirts and stuff. You also might find good skirt styles labeled as yoga wear ... though I'd think it would be riskier to wear a skirt for yoga than for running ...

Sarah McClelland said...

I run and bike in skirts. And I love it...
It is one of those things that I prefer to buy over making most of the time though, and I tend to prefer the ones that do not attach so that I can switch for cycling shorts... Go to runningskirts.com for reviews and retailers.

I mostly wear skirts and dresses, and much of the feedback I have gotten is positive. However, I'm far enough South to where skirts and sundresses are clothing du jour because the weather makes it easy for that to be the case.