The decision regarding buying bike shorts will depend on the intended use: bicycle touring, mountain bike shorts, training rides, racing, recreational cycling or whatever.
There are many styles and types from which performance will vary based on your need, click here to view a great selection.
Depending on the style chosen cycling shorts can help reduce wind resistance, absorb the bike shock, protect the skin from harmful UV rays and also protect the skin from the friction of the legs rubbing against the bicycle seat.
When buying bike shorts four things to consider:
Styles – there are baggy shorts which are loose and great for mountain biking, bicycle touring and recreational rides. There are also the traditional cycling shorts which have a tight fit providing less wind resistance which can be good for racing, training and club rides.
Cycling shorts are constructed of fabrics with elasticity or panels which are sewn together to create the cycling shorts. With this type the shorts that have more panels will normally fit the contours of your body better and can therefore be provide more comfort.
Many cyclists also prefer the bib shorts style which were designed so that the elastic waistbands sometimes cut into them when riding.
Obviously you want to have cycling shorts that look good on you so they are available in a variety of colors and styles. Some also have pockets preferred by mountain bikers and those bicycle touring.
Padding – padded bike shorts will usually consist of a gel or chamois liner. The padding absorbs shock and also helps to prevent rashes and chafing by reducing the friction between your seat, and the bike seat. Some styles offer a detachable liner which is especially good when bicycle touring as it makes washing easier.
Fabrics – cycling shorts are normally made from lycra or wool. Whichever you choose the fabric must be breathable, wick off moisture, stretch easily and be lightweight. Some offer UV protection from the sun.
There are also compression shorts available which reduce muscle fatigue by keeping your muscles compressed, especially good mountain bike shorts.
Have a wonderful time on your bike but do take the time when buying bike shorts to choose for a comfortable pair..