Cycling shorts keep you comfortable during your ride and allow for easy mobility. They are offered in a variety of styles to accommodate different needs while bike riding. In many cases, bike shorts are made with features such as gel padding and built-in bibs.How do you wear bicycle shorts?
Cycling shorts are skin-tight leg apparel made of nylon, Lycra, spandex, or a mixture of the three. These fabrics are known for their moisture-wicking and chafe-reduction qualities. These factors are what to look out for when wearing biking shorts:
- Underwear: Do not wear underwear with cycling shorts. This eliminates the comfort and benefits of bicycle shorts.
- Bib straps: Cycling shorts can be secured using bib straps, which should be put on before your shirt layer. Bib shorts have built in bib straps.
- Fit: The fit you want depends on your activity and personal preference. While some like the feel of tighter shorts, others prefer a looser fit.
- Lining: Some shorts come with a removable lining that functions like underwear. They can be removed and replaced with a fresh liner to get multiple days of use out of one pair of bicycle shorts.
- Cleanliness: Unless you have a liner, your cycling shorts should be washed every day.
- Cut: Bike shorts should rise higher in the back than the front and extend to the end of your thigh. This ensures coverage and comfort through your full range of movement during your ride.
- Snugness: They should be tight, but not constricting. This reduces chafing while riding and muscle soreness after your bike ride.
- Padding: Traditional bike shorts have padding in the inner thigh area. This is known as chamois padding. Padded cycling shorts are also sold with gel for greater comfort.
- Mountain bike shorts: To protect from the scrapes and scratches of riding in the outdoors, mountain bike shorts have a tight inner layer and a baggy outer layer.
- Bib short: A bib short has built in straps to hold them up while you're cycling.
- Gel shorts: Padded with gel, these options are the most comfortable for commuter-length bike rides. The gel reduces saddle soreness while cycling.
- Baggies: These bike shorts protect from branches and tumbles during an outdoor ride. Cycling in baggies is also a popular choice for commuters who want to be comfortable but not stand out.
- Muscle soreness: In addition to keeping you comfortable during your ride, they can double as compression shorts that minimize muscle soreness after cycling.
- Moisture wicking: Tight bike shorts wick moisture away from the skin to keep you more comfortable during cycling.