Cycling Buddy

Member | Login with facebook
Forgot password?

Advice

Choosing cycling shorts made easy

17 August, 2013 0 comments

Choosing the right cycling shorts

 

 

Choosing cycling shorts made easy

Nothing can boost the comfort of riding on a bike more than a pair of cycling shorts. Of course, if you’re only beginning your cycling workouts or rarely get on a saddle, you can do without a pair and be perfectly happy. However, once those miles start building up you should do yourself a favour and invest in a pair of cycling-specific shorts – you’ll be able to enjoy those rides a lot more! Once you do, you’ll probably never want to go back to your old shorts again.

But how do you go about finding the perfect pair that fits your needs? Here are some things to keep in mind when you go shopping.

  1. You have to find what fits you – Everyone has unique anatomy, and riding styles and saddles may be different. What is more, the type of workouts you engage in determines the type of shorts you may feel best in. For example, if you’re just starting out or are riding long distances, you might want a pair with thicker padding for shock absorption and cushioning. Triathletes, on the other hand, tend to choose a pair with thin padding so that they can also use it for running and swimming. Therefore, when you’re buying cycling shorts, try to imagine how they fit you in a riding position and how you are planning on using them.
     
  2. Highest price doesn’t equal best experience – It might sound like an easy option to just buy the most expensive shorts, thinking that they must be good. However, it is more important to make sure that the pair in questions suits your personal needs.
     
  3. Still, expensive tends to be better – Here’s the thing – lower priced cycling gear also tends to have lower quality. Therefore, to ensure that you get a pair that lasts long and is comfortable and functional, look into the higher price range. This way you can make sure that the seams are durable and not irritating, that the padding is comfortable, and that the fit is well designed.
     
  4. Find a snug fit -  Your shorts should fit you snugly without feeling restrictive in an uncomfortable way. When you look at yourself in the mirror, the backside will look slightly baggy when you stand up, but once you fold your body into the riding position, everything should fit tight around the body.
     
  5. Elite shorts have more panels – Cycling shorts are usually made of four to eight panels in order to fit the body better, with more panels usually meaning a higher price. Although with the stretchy fabrics used today the distinction isn’t as noticeable, more panels can still mean more comfort. Whatever type you choose, make sure you try them out in the riding position to make sure they fit your anatomy well.
     
  6. Leg grippers should be secure and comfortable – You don’t want your shorts to ride up your legs, but you also don’t want them to stop your blood flow. Therefore, choose cycling shorts with leg grippers that are wide enough to be comfortable, and that are made of a rubbery material that sticks to your legs without having to be too tight.
     
  7. Leg length is a matter of style -  When you choose the leg length of your shorts, go with the look you prefer. Just make sure that the legs aren’t so short that your bare thighs end up rubbing against the saddle.
     
  8. Note the different kinds of padding – The padding (also called “chamois”) of cycling shorts varies in thickness and material. Some liners are made up of sections and have seams in them – if you’re afraid this could become uncomfortable then pick a pair with a smooth one-piece liner. Some shorts have gel inserts that provide thicker padding, but these can be more likely to cause dampness because of poorer moisture transfer.
     
  9. Bib shorts can be beneficial but are usually more expensive -  Elite cyclists often use shorts with shoulder straps as these make sure everything stays in place when cycling while standing up on the pedals. However, these shorts are usually more expensive and can become an annoying piece of clothing since they are more difficult to remove when nature calls.
     
  10. Waist should be comfortable and functional – The waist of your shorts should be high enough at the back to keep you covered while you cycle. Additionally, it should fit snugly but not be too restrictive in any position, especially when you bend forwards. It is best to choose a pair with a wider waistband, since these tend to be more comfortable. Also, you should feel that the waist holds up well.
     
  11. Consider cycling underwear or loose fit cycling shorts -  If you’re not so fond of spandex – or the look of regular cycling shorts – you can make an alternative choice. Cycling underwear usually consists of a chamois pad combined with mesh and can be worn under any piece of clothing. Loose fitting cycling shorts have two layers – and internal padded layer and an external loose short.
     
  12. More important than choosing shorts made for men or women is choosing a pair that fits – The main differences between bike shorts for women and men is that women’s shorts usually have a narrower and longer waist, a longer front in-seam, and shorter leg length. However, since the types are largely similar, you may find a men’s pair that fits you well even if you’re a woman.

So, what do you think – will you go and buy a pair of cycling shorts? Or do you already own a pair? Share your experience in the comments!


Sponsored links

Sponsored links