In the shops, on the streets, on the trails we see lycra, lycra, lycra and more black lycra. If you are not an elite cyclist or race then the main reason why you would choose to wear lycra bike pants is to hold a chamois (padding) in place. So.. what if we had another way to hold that padding (the chamois) in place? What if we put the chamois in our underwear then we would get to choose what clothing we ride in. We could choose to bike in everyday or recreational clothes.
Padded Bike Underwear – What are they?
No more – having to have cycle specific pants for all seasons and all weather conditions. No more – feeling that you don’t want to ride somewhere whether it be town, the park, to your kids sports training…because you don’t want to hang out in your lycra. You now can use padded bike underwear to keep the chamois in place. Yes, you read that right, but not just normal underwear, underwear with a minimal flat chamois (padding). Designed to be discreet, keep you happy while walking around off the bike and give you unlimited riding clothing choices. This garment can be worn under anything you choose to ride in.
Padded Bike Underwear – How do you use them?
Padded underwear for cyclists have entered the market to fill a much needed gap. This style of protection is ideal for around town errands, socialising with friends, riding to work, riding with the kids and training rides (up to 2 or 3 hours depending on the chamois). The beauty being that you can choose what you want, and like, to wear over them. This could be any of your casual clothes, work clothes for your daily commute or some training gear. Bike underwear gives you the flexibility to choose performance leggings that can be used across your chosen exercise activities rather than having several pairs that are activity specific. You now can have one pair for walking/running and biking. I have a pair of three-quarter tights, and long tights that I use for running and walking and when I bike I wear my padded bike underwear underneath these tights and now I am also ready to go ride.
Padded bike underwear – features
- fitting and firm to help keep the chamois in place. A fabric that stretches – should contain a small percentage of lycra
- the chamois needs to be women specific to match our female structural differences
- both the chamois and the material should be breathable and moisture wicking
Chamois made in Italy -minimalist flat surface goes against your skin – Women’s goUnders
Underneath surface chamois with different density of padding
So what will you choose to ride in
- Pants, leggings or shorts these garments must give you room to move or stretch as you move. My daughter, like a lot of girls out there, prefers to ride in leggings – see the photo to the right where she is wearing her favourite casual leggings. Leggings and capri style pants are both great options if they contain some lycra or elastane for stretch.
- Skirts/ Dresses are slightly different as they give you space with the exception of tube skirts and mini skirts. You also need to think about the length of the skirt, it will ‘ride’ up your legs if it is fitted. Ideally go for a knee length with a flare or A-line to allow movement. In windy conditions you may have to hold it down.
- Tops, go for tops that are breathable, moisture wicking and allow shoulder movement (See Women Riding Clothing – Fabric Choice). If your bike has you leaning forward then back gapping may be a consideration.
- Like a sporty look then your choice of clothing is huge and it doesn’t have to be skin tight & shiny. Exercise gear is booming – along with traditional sportswear companies many designers have jumped on the sport wear wagon so you have a good choice of styles and fabrics in everyday wear that will give you stretch. Some of the technological enhancements to look for include breathability, wicking & odour resistance (See Women’s Riding Clothing – Fabric Choice).
- If your activity level is low your choice is wide. Please be aware that cotton is not a good choice for medium to high level exercising (See Women’s Riding Clothing – Fabric Choice).
This list gives you lots to consider when choosing what to wear on the bike. There is more you need to consider to make sure you are comfortable, warm and safe. Check out What to Wear on the Bike…for more important information.
The choice is yours…what will you choose?
get Ready and goRide – Bike in Everyday/Recreational Clothing
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