When you think of leg warmers, what’s the first thing that goes through your head?

90s dance leg warmers

90’s fashion statements aside. Leg warmers are extremely common in ballet.

And besides being a great style piece, they actually have a purpose.

In this article, we’ll answer the following questions:

  • what is the point of leg warmers?
  • why do dancers wear leg warmers?
  • what are leg warmers for in ballet?

Let’s start with the history of the leg warmer.

It’s not entirely clear when leg warmers became a staple for ballet, but dancewear manufacturer Saks Moving Wear cites the late 20th century for the rise in popularity in leg warmers.

Why do dancers wear leg warmers? and what are they for?

When practicing ballet, leg warmers are used to keep the bottom half of the leg warm and toned. This makes it easier to perform various steps and combinations without cramping up. Some teachers swear by them, as they have to perform movements on and off.

There are several benefits to wearing leg warmers for ballet, such as:

  • Protecting your muscles from the cold
  • Keeping your legs warm if the AC is blasting
  • Warm up your body faster, and keep your body warm in between rehearsals and classes
  • Keep your legs warm during photo shoots
  • Maintain flexibility and achieve peak flexibility faster

However, always make sure to take them off once you’re warm because they can cause you to fatigue quickly.

Looking for a new or your first pair of leg warmers? Here are some of our favorite leg warmers from Instagram.



Are we missing your favorite brand of leg warmers? Let us know in the comments!

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