Curved s-seams, lycra, flat seams, chamois, high rise rear fit, elasticated cuffs, 3D anatomical shaping, multi-level foam construction, anti-bacterial finish… sound like an engineering project? No just padded riding bike pants.

As with most things riding –  lycra padded bike pants come in numerous variations … short – above the knee, long – full length, three quarter – 3/4 length, winter, reflective…which means if you are choosing to bike in padded lycra bike pants you have a few choices to consider.

Padded Lycra Bike Pant Features

Let’s look at what you need in a lycra bike pant and a look at the different options so you can consider which of these variations will suit YOU.

For comfortable supportive bike pants go for

  • Womens specific – a women’s specific chamois (detailed chamois story go HERE) and a shape and leg length that suits a women
  • S-shaped seams (a curved seam) – to allow more comfortable movement at your hip during pedalling
  • The right size – so they are a firm fit to keep your chamois in the right place
  • A leg cuff that will avoid any roll up – elasticated leg cuff with grippers prevents them from riding up BUT work out whether this will suit your leg shape
What type of leg length would be best for YOU?
Padded Bike ShortsShort Padded Bike Pants
  • Probably the most recognised padded cycling pant is the black lycra short which ends at varying lengths above the knee
  • Good for aerodynamics
  • Good summer option as cooler
  • To hold there shape they will need a lycra content of 10% or more

Long Bike Pants

Three Quarter Padded Pant
  • An all season versatile and easy to wear style that can be worn throughout the year.
  • Often a more flattering style
  • Need a lycra content of 10% or more, as the pants cross 2 joints
  • Good for aerodynamics
  • If wearing them in winter at night consider reflective strips to add to your visibility




We sell these 3/4 padded pants…

Terry Holster Hi-Rise ($189) – Ideal for recreation riders & curvy body shapes.  Ultra wide, high rise waist band, self-fabric leg band, relaxed styling & compression, s-shaped seams in a 6 panel design, flat seam, soft thread, two mesh side pockets and womens specific Italian chamois….  LEARN MORE

Terry Touring Knicker ($189) – Ideal for endurance, tour riding or multi days on the bike.  Wide waist band, elastic free, s-shaped 8 panel construction, movability, quickest drying fabric, flat seam, ultra soft thread, side zip pocket, leg gripper, womens specific high density chamois….  LEARN MORE 

Long Padded Tights
  • This full length version offers warmth and protection
  • Need a lycra content of 10% or more, as the pants cross 2 joints
  • Good for aerodynamics
  • If they will be used mainly for commuting, do they need zips at the ankle for quick removal?
  • Definitely want warmth? Try some merino in your long padded tights for winter riding
  • If wearing them in winter at night consider reflective strips to add to your visibility
So Why Lycra?

Lycra was introduced to the cycling world in the 1970s specifically designed for professional road riding athletes for aerodynamics – less resistance. Do you really need to be aerodynamically skin tight when riding on a cycle trail or to the library?

Why do we see so many types of riders in lycra? Lycra bike pants are readily available – they are easy to purchase and we are swamped with choices. It does provide good stretch, firmness and durability, depending on how high the lycra content is, while keeping the chamois in place.  They are especially great if you are riding long distances, 2-3 hours plus.  Sometimes we just continue to ‘do’ because that is what we have always ‘done’ but our choices have moved on.

Not sure Lycra is for YOU?

There is an alternative – Womens Padded Underwear – that allows you to wear whatever you like while riding your bike.

We now have a lot more performance fabrics to choose from so if you don’t feel comfortable in lycra then don’t wear lycra. Find out more – Bike in Everyday/Recreational Clothes.

Our Womens goUnders are made from 11% EmPower Supplex Lycra (polyamide with lycra) giving you a great fit with ease of movement – 4 way stretch.  EmPower Supplex is a firmer/stronger fabric known for its ‘hold in’ sensation, giving women smoother contours and great support, as the fabric has a mild lift and compression effect. It is long lasting and doesn’t shrink, pill, fade, or lose it’s shape – 260gsm which is a leading weight for performance fabrics.

For ideas about what you can wear on the bike read our story What to wear over goUnders?

Womens padded bike pants

Womens goUnders – Padded Bike Underwear

get Ready and goRide – Bike in women’s padded lycra bike pants


Thanks for reading. Used together our stories, resources & products support you to achieve and develop as a rider.

Related Resources:

Choosing what to wear on a bike

Why wear padded bike pants

Bike in everday/recreational clothes

Women’s Bike pants Buying Guide

Kids Bike pants Buying Guide

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