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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    64

    Advice on shorts

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    I have a friend who wants advice on what shorts to wear. I only own Pearl Izumi's - only because they were super comfortable and happened to be on sale at the time. So, I have no point of comparison. Anyone have strong opinions on what shorts are best or is it completely different for everyone? She is TOTALLY new to cycling. Thanks for any advice I can pass on to her!
    "For God did not give us a spirit of timidity but a spirit of power, of love and of self discipline." 2 Timothy 1:7

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Bristol, TN
    Posts
    360
    I have ridden in all kinds of shorts from several different companies...REI, Cannondale, Canari, PI, Blackbottoms, and most recently Terry. The Terry's are by far the most comfortable that I have owned. The elastic is not as tight on my legs as the others. I have thick , uh, heavy, uh, well some thighs that need a little more space than most shorts have!

    The T-Short is what I have been wearing and though they are pricey, I really like them. Some of the shorts have very thick padding and I find that it chafes me on a long ride. The T-Short seems to have just the right amount. I like padding but not TOO much. I think it is really important to try them on, as ordering them, for me, has resulted in alot of returns because of fit, most notably the thigh elastic being too tight. I would prefer to visit shops and try pairs to find a comfortable one. If it isn't comfortable in the shop, it isn't going to get better on the bike! (like shoes! they don't fit better after you by them if they don't fit when you try them on!!)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,501
    Fit is different for everyone, but I think there are some general rules.

    To begin with, make sure she knows how cycling shorts are supposed to fit. (Like pantyhose. Very snug, but not so tight that the chamois is stretched taut when she sits on the saddle.)

    The more panels a pair of shorts has, the more expensive they will be, but they will also be more comfortable because the fabric moves better with your movements.

    If you're fleshy in the crotch area, thick padding between the legs may chafe.

    If you like a saddle with a narrow nose, you probably won't like a chamois that's wide in front.

    If you have wide sitbones, make sure the chamois is wide enough in back to pad them.

    Shebeest SSS shorts are popular. I'm not a fan of PI myself, but that just goes to show that what's comfortable for you isn't for me. Trying them on is best if you can, but sometimes the LBS's selection of women's shorts can be limited. TE is REALLY helpful with fit if you call or email, and they have a great return policy...
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    64
    Thank you! I copied and pasted your responses in an email to her. I also told her about TE so she could check it out if she has more riding questions. Being pretty new to it myself I didn't feel I'm the best resource for her!
    "For God did not give us a spirit of timidity but a spirit of power, of love and of self discipline." 2 Timothy 1:7

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    northern Virginia
    Posts
    5,897
    I would add - look for a one-piece, seamless chamois. Seams between you and the saddle can be very uncomfortable.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    2,704
    Something else to consider (if she's truly brand new, she may not have heard this): most folks go commando under their cycling shorts. Less fabric and seams to irritate the parts, and it lets the wicking, seamless chamois do its job.

    I prefer Terry Bella shorts and I have some older Sugois that agree with me. The newer Sugoi chamois and any of PI's recent chamoises (chamoi?) are too padded for my liking. Saddle choice may influence shorts choice as well.

    In short, it's a pretty personal decision that is best made by trying a few different brands and styles. Oakleaf had good advice too.

 

 

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