As a Zumba instructor, I can tell you that the pants you wear to class matter. In particular, there are three characteristics you need to look out for when selecting a pair of pants for Zumba – whether they be cargos, capris, or leggings.
1. Zumba Pants’ Fabric/Comfort
Zumba classes are high-energy exercises and you will probably be sweating much more than you are used to. Certainly, you will want to choose something that is made from a comfortable fabric.
Cotton is comfortable in general and some do choose this type of material. However, I would generally avoid cotton sweat pants because the baggy sweats will hold all the moisture. This can lead to skin irritation and one of the worst feelings is feeling chilled mid-way through your workout.
The best fabric to look for in clothing to wear to your Zumba class is one that is lightweight, moisture-wicking, and breathable.
Fabric with these properties will be sure to absorb all the sweat and allow you to perform all your movements with ease and comfort, keeping you as dry as possible. Synthetics or a blend are great choices.
Several fitness companies are marketing their brand of “keep cool.” Look for a 70/30 mix or even higher.
No fabric will keep you from sweating, but the synthetics will not hold the moisture, resulting in you feeling drier and more comfortable.
2. Zumba Pants’ Stretch and Flexibility
This is mainly for aesthetics. While baggy pants, such as sweats, may give you enough room for movement, they are not a great look for Zumba.
Well-fitting, stretch clothing is a much better look and feel for salsa and those hip accenting moves. Avoid any overly large or baggy fitting clothes in general as they will get in the way while executing the twists and turns that are a part of all our Zumba classes.
Leggings such as these from Baleaf are a great option for Zumba and are made from a breathable, synthetic nylon/spandex blend.
3. Zumba Pants’ Ability to Hold Up to Repeated Washing
Always consider the material and ability to wash them frequently. The pants you wear to Zumba will get sweaty and will thus require you to wash them more often.
You want them to hold up to repeated washing, and be made from fabric that does not bleed out the bright pink or red each time.
If you want Zumba pants that hold up to lots of washings, the Zumba Fitness brand is one of my top choices.
With the multiple classes I teach daily, mine are washed regularly and hold up surprisingly well. Just be sure to hang dry the pants to reduce shrinkage.
So, now we have given you the general idea of what to consider when searching for the perfect pair of bottoms for your class. Here are my top picks for the best cargos, capris, and leggings for your next Zumba class:
Best Cargos for Zumba Pants
Let us start with the popular and true Zumba Cargo. That would be either the Zumba Highlighter or Zumba Fusion pants. Both are great choices as far as cargos, well, go. The Zumba Cargos are popular for more than a few reasons.
Firstly, they are lightweight, flexible, and easy to wash. Secondly, their neon colors (such as blue or pink) do not fade. Finally, the nylon fabric is quick to dry out, eliminating that wet, chilled feeling that can come with sweat pants.
Zumba Cut Me Loose Cargo Pants. They come in a variety of colors, including some great bright ones. They have a stylish belted look and the desirable tassels for “shaking it”.
The Zumba Highlighter Cargos also come in many colors: neon blues, yellows, multi-color, and black or white. Instead of a belted look, these cargos feature a fold-over optional band.
The youthful crowd can fold the band to have a low-rise look, while those who are more mature and prefer stomach coverage can leave the band up.
Lightweight and nylon, these are made from a great non-stick fabric (which you will appreciate during those sweaty classes) and are quick drying to eliminate feeling chilled on the way home from classes.
The best part of either of these cargos are that their length is adjustable. Nylon cords make it easy to adjust length, even turning the pants into capris if feeling extremely warm during class.
Best Capris for Zumba Pants
If you prefer capris, then there are multiple choices for you to pick from. Legging-type capris can be form-fitting and slimming, and quick-drying too.
There are many colors to choose from: black, red, or even patterned designs. So, there will be no problem making that complete outfit match up. Zumba’s Orbit Cargo Capri is an excellent choice.
If you do not want cargo capris, there are many other options to go for. For example, these RBX draw sting capris pants are sweat-wicking and lightweight — excellent for Zumba.
Look for brands with nylon material and offers something that is on the looser side. Also, look out for straps or ribbons to get that look Zumba look.
You will find all colors, including white, black, purple, red, blue, etc. Choose something that feels like you are in the latest music video when your Zumba instructor puts in one of the current pop songs into the playlist!
Best Leggings for Zumba Pants
Leggings are a great choice for those of us that do not want to feel any jiggle when we shake in class. With a great fit, you will not feel like your pants are bagging midway through the hour.
Choose the state of the art fabrics, such as Supplex or a spandex mix. Cotton might feel comfortable at first but will hold moisture from the get-go.
You will probably feel like you are sitting in a pool of water after class. Certainly, not a great feeling. Trust me, I know!
These leggings are black but have a bright band to waken up the look. Stylish to wear into a store for errands before class to make these a great choice. Zumba Fitness has many options of leggings, both capris, and full pant length.
The Zumba Retro/Sexy Look
Some of us just want to have a throw-back time. Headbands, leg warmers are seen often, and pants are no exception. Here is a great example of super cute, retro feel Zumba pants with an awesome pattern.
Or maybe a hip one-piece fitness suit like this jumpsuit, a backless workout catsuit is the choice for you… Dance it out looking and feeling like you are doing a little sexy workout!
Whatever you prefer – capris, leggings, cargos, or that sexy look, there are a pair of Zumba pants for you. Just remember to make sure the fit is comfortable, flexible, and breathable.
Make sure your choice is washable, and then have fun picking the style and the color choices you prefer. I like to mix it up: lime green on top, pink on the bottom, or black on top with red bottoms.
Or wait, was that white on top and purple bottoms? Too many choices to limit oneself. Mix it up and have fun!