Womens Activewear – Mountain Biking Versus Road Cycling

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Road biking and mountain biking seem like similar sports, right? Obviously you will wear similar women’s activewear for each sport, but there are a few differences. Road cycling is a much sleeker sport focusing on speed and efficiency. The rule of thumb is, the tighter/snugger the better. For road cycling, spandex/lycra is the choice for shorts. A short that is form fitting will look good, feel good, and help you fit in with the subculture that is road cycling. For jerseys, it’s important to have a form fitting garment that will not have loose material to flap in the wind. Also, road cycling jerseys will most likely match your shorts or be a reflection of your personal style or sponsors (if you choose to have one).

For mountain biking the attitude and atmosphere is more relaxed, as is the clothing you wear! Mountain biking focuses more on baggy shorts with ample room to move about the bike as you ride the trail and negotiate obstacles. These shorts are a specific piece of women’s athletic clothing since they are going to be cut for a woman’s body, as well as have a chamois pad insert in the shorts designed for women. A relaxed or semi-form fitting jersey is the norm for a women’s activewear top when mountain biking. This will insure you comfort, style, and the ability to maneuver easily without getting yourself caught up on your bike or feeling restricted in your movement.

For helmet-wear in each sport, the differences are also easy to see. Mountain biking helmets generally will cover more of the head ( mainly in the back and side areas) and also include a visor on the front to block the sun and save your eyes from bushes or low hanging tree branches. For road cycling, a sleek, refined helmet with no visor is just the ticket. Road cycling helmets will have bigger vents in the shell of the helmet for more air to pass through as well. To protect your eyes, a comfortable pair of sunglasses is a must for either sport. A semi-wraparound or a full-wraparound pair of sunglasses will protect your eyes from direct wind as well as UV rays and the brightness of the sun.

write by Michelle Burns


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