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Cycle Clothes - Tips

Wearing the right cycle clothes when on your bike will enhance your cycling experience. If you are going on a long distance ride then it is essential that you wear the the right kind of padded shorts or trousers to prevent discomfort from your saddle.

For long rides, on a hard saddled, ensuring you are comfortable is crucial for your enjoyment and also for preventing injuries. Wearing Lycra racing shorts, with a padded lining will protect you from saddle sore.

You must take into account the weather conditions when you are riding. This will determine the kind of cycle clothes you need.

Here's a quick list of what cycle clothes I consider essential when out riding.

Cold Conditions

On cold days I prefer to wear cycling the tights. Keeping the knees covered up will help prevent you from getting cold and keep your performance high. Having a base layer is always a good idea, garments used for base layer will pull sweat from your body. I always have a base layer of clothing because been covered in sweat can affect your performance, good base layer clothing will help take the sweat from your body.

Your cycling top should not be tool baggy or it may slow you down especially if it's a windy day. On the other hand avoid cycling tops that are too tight and restrict your body movement, these are as bad as baggy tops.

Don't forget to keep your arms covered on chilly days, there's nothing like cold arms to ruin your ride. I've found over the years that wearing the right cycle clothes adds to your comfort and performance. When I first started cycling, cycling clothes were hard to come by and were for sports riders only. Today you can buy some great cycle clothes in any high street for reasonable prices.

Shoes

Stiff shoes that slot into the peddles are the best. Stiff shoes ensure you get the most energy from your peddling because your feet will not bend around the peddles dissipating the energy. A good point to remember when choosing shoes is that your feet expand when hot so don't buy them too tight. Allow for the expansion that will take place when you have been cycling for a while.

The most popular shoes are the ones with Velcro fastening because you can easily loosen them if they begin to feel tight. You can also get them on and off easier.

Head gear

I personally would not ride without a helmet. I did for years before they became the norm. now I feel vulnerable without one. Buy a good quality helmet. It should feel comfortable and you shouldn't be aware you have it on. It shouldn't move when you shake your head and it should be well ventilated.

There's plenty of choice on the market today to satisfy every need. Don't skimp on your cycling clothes, they are an essential part of your cycling gear.

Paul has been cycling for over thirty years. he is the author of the blog Defensivecycling Come over to Defensivecycling and get your free book "cycling for Life"

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