Wednesday, 29 March 2017

The Basic Clothings For Riding

Think you don't need special clothing to ride? You're (mostly) right. With the exception of always including a helmet, you really can ride in anything. However, technical bicycle clothing helps keep you safe, comfortable, and faster on the road. Most bicycle clothing is made from materials that are made to dry quickly and wick perspiration away from your skin. This is extremely important because as you’re riding, any moisture in your clothing can cause chafing and irritation. 

The two most common fabrics are high-tech poly mixes and merino wool. Both materials wick sweat and are quick drying, but the high-tech polyester mixes are more common and affordable. Merino wool is not your granddad’s sweater material. It’s nature’s miracle fiber that is highly durable, wicks, insulates (keeping you cool in the summer and warm in the winter, depending on the thickness), dries quickly, and has antimicrobial properties that keep your clothes from building up with “gym stink.” 


This is your bike shirt. It comes in short-sleeved, long-sleeved (for the winter), or ladies’ sleeveless variations (for the summer). From the front, it looks like a regular tight shirt, but it is actually a well-thought-out piece of clothing that is defined by a few key design components. Jerseys are intended to be worn snugly to help keep you aerodynamic. 

The jersey is cut longer in back and shorter in front to accommodate your bent-over riding position. This adds to the awkward look when you’re just walking around, but covers your lower back and keeps material from binding up or cinching in the front when you’re on the bike. The front also has a three-quarter to full-length zipper to give you extra ventilation when needed.

Another technical aspect of the jersey is the back pockets. You’ll want one with at least three. There are jerseys with fewer, but most riders find that they want as much space as possible to carry all the things they may find themselves needing, including food, water, on-the-road repair items, sunscreen, jackets, and more. This clever placement not only keeps your stuff where you can easily reach it while you’re riding without it falling out, but also keeps it tucked out of the way of the wind.

If you want a loose jersey, you can buy AM or DH jersey, they tend to loose fit, look like a motocross jersey and usually doesn't have any pockets in the back.

Bike Shorts and Chamois

Bike shorts are made of the “slimming” Lycra that most people envision when they think of cyclists. Though commonly referred to as shorts, they also come in three-quarter-length and full-length versions for cooler-weather riding. The shorts are usually made of multiple panels of material to help create the most smooth, snug, and comfortable fit.

You’ll also have a choice of whether to get bibs or regular shorts. Regular shorts have a waistband that can be a source of discomfort because you’ll be bent over the whole time you’re on the bike. The bibs make you look like a high school wrestler but eliminate the rolling and binding of the waistband through the use of over-the-shoulder straps. This can make bathroom breaks a little tricky because of the need to remove your top to get your bibs off. However, most riders find that this minor inconvenience is well worth the extra comfort in the long haul. 

Sewn inside is the chamois (commonly pronounced “shammy”), a big padded liner that protects your behind from soreness and chafing. The word originates from the goatlike animal whose skin was the fabric for the first liners ever used. Lucky for us, the modern chamois is made from some combination of foam and gel and is covered with a microfiber cloth that wicks away sweat.

Beware of getting the thickest chamois thinking it will offer the most protection. If the padding is too thick, it can actually cause numbness and lose its beneficial quick-drying properties. For commuters who may not be riding for hours at a time and sometimes ride in their work clothes, there are thin liners to be worn under your “regular” clothes that have a thin chamois. This works a bit like the regular bike shorts but without the bulk and you can wear them all day long if you like. Almost forgot to mention, nowadays you can buy baggy shorts if you don't like the tights. in some baggy shorts, they have a tight and chamois padding inside and the other's don't.

Shoes and Socks

Your shoes will mostly depend on what type of pedals you’ve chosen to ride. If you’ve decided to ride flat pedals, any fitness or gym shoe will work fine, though the stiffer the sole, the more power that can be transferred from your body to the pedal, so some shoe companies offer a shoe that works fairly well. 

If instead you’ve decided to go with a clipless pedal system, your choice of shoes will be based on whether you decided on the road or mountain type of pedal. The mountain cleat attaches with two bolts, the road cleat with three, so generally you’ll need road shoes for road-specific pedals, and mountain shoes for mountain-specific pedals. With either kind the fit should be somewhat snug around your foot—not too tight, but as narrow as your foot will allow. This helps transfer power and keep you aerodynamic. 

Cycling-specific socks are made of special wicking fibers and are designed to give support in the arch, to provide padding where you need it, and not to bunch up or rub. Of course, there are varying lengths to choose from, but the height of the cuff has little to do with functionality and everything to do with fashion.


This is the most important and valuable item you’ll put on to ride a bike. Riders shouldn’t saddle up without reaching for their helmets first. Of all the parts of your body that can break, your brain is the most valuable and least repairable. Yes, the chances are slim that you’ll fall. Unfortunately, if you do it’s never expected. Because of the riding position, it’s difficult, if not impossible, to protect your head in case of an accident without a helmet. 

Even when you’re not moving quickly, it’s all too easy to bump your head on the pavement or curb if you go down. All helmets sold in bike shops meet the same levels of safety certification standards whether they cost $40 or $300. The main difference is that the more expensive helmets are much lighter and have better ventilation and more high-tech bells and whistles for adjustment without compromising on safety. So if you’re resistant to wearing a helmet because you love the feeling of the wind in your hair, invest in a higher-end helmet so you can enjoy the wind and keep your best asset safe.

Big Book Of Cycling for Beginners

Ride On!

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