Whether you choose to bike on the highway, cycle on a mountain trail, or pedal your way to work, the type of clothing that you wear will help ensure that you stay comfortable the entire time. Different styles are available that will help you enjoy the ride much longer and allow you to perform better when navigating difficult paths. If you are unsure about the type of cycling clothing you should wear, here are a few suggestions on how to choose the right bike clothing.
Finding the Best Bike Jersey
Cycling jerseys need to be both cool and comfortable and should never hinder your performance while on the road. Most bike jerseys are made from Lycra spandex or other types of form-fitting material. Lycra helps reduce drag while riding your bike. Furthermore, the fabric helps ensure that you remain cool and dry as it wicks away sweat. The specific features to look for when buying a bike jersey include the following:
- A stand-up collar that will shade your neck from the sun
- A front zipper that allows for ventilation
- Shoulders cut wider than your typical T-shirt sleeves for more comfort
- Sleeves shaped specifically for a forward leaning position
- Back pockets that allow easy access to necessities while on the go
- A longer cut in the back for extra coverage while you are riding
- Reflective trim for safety while riding at night
If you choose to ride your bike during the fall or winter months, you should look for bike jerseys that have long sleeves for optimal coverage, and those made from a dense, heavy fabric with a brushed lining for extra warmth and comfort.
Choosing the Best Pair of Bike Shorts
You should keep in mind that bike shorts are not the same as street shorts, primarily because bike shorts offer more freedom of movement. In addition, they have a padded liner that reduces friction while also wicking away moisture. Road bike shorts should always feature panel construction and a smooth and soft padded liner in order to prevent bacterial growth and provide additional protection from uneven, bumpy terrain.
A good pair of bike shorts will help make the ride more comfortable. However, if you have an uncomfortable bike seat or one that is not adjusted properly, you will continue to experience discomfort while riding.
Other types of bike shorts include the following:
- Mountain bike shorts, often referred to as “baggies,” have a loose outer short along with a spandex liner.
- Bib shorts are a comfortable option for many bike riders, because they feature an elastic waistband that can restrict breathing.
- Skorts are a popular option for women, because they feature a spandex short covered by a stylish skirt.
Shorts with longer-cut legs and leg grippers offer the best overall comfort, because they prevent saddle chafing and keep your shorts in place. The waist style should be stretchy and made of spandex material. For women, the yoga-style cut provides less-restrictive comfort.