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Tight or baggy cycling shorts? What's your preference?

Do you prefer tight or baggy cycling shorts? What's more hygienic? Let's figure it out.

As a biker who is finally getting serious about long-distance rides that will continue for two weeks in length, I am faced with a question: Tight or baggy shorts? I'm going to purchase a pair and don't want to regret the first pick.

Around town, I am checking out every single biker I see because I am curious of what kind of gear they have chosen to use for their ride. For many, I see the tight cycling shorts, and that's what I see in races in the news, too. But really, is it all that comfortable? I question how much air flow a person is getting and if it is a bit too tight and cutting off any blood circulation. Plus, my healthcare provider gave me a stern warning, "Don't wear those tight shorts. The number of women I see after Ragbrai...well, it's not pretty."

So I have been looking into baggy cycling shorts for the sake of breathability and notice that there is another tight liner within them, too! What's the point of the baggy style if it's still tight? Sure, a person doesn't have to show off his of her derrier when getting off the bike and strolling through town, but how comfortable is the ride in them?

Right now, I train in standard workout shorts. However, I know I need to get a pair of proper cycling shorts with a padded lining before I head to Japan for a 2-week ride from Nagasaki to Hiroshima, Japan. So that leaves me with the ultimate question, at least on this issue, tight or baggy shorts? What do you think, fellow community member?

And if you'd like to learn more about the International Peace Bike Tour in Japan this August and/or make a donation to support me, the U.S. Biker/Citizen-Ambassador and participants from developing countries, please visit www.psriowa.org

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Donnie Morlan June 22, 2012 at 06:21 PM
Michelle, the longer you are on the bike the more you will want the padding of either loose or tight bikers shorts. Get one of each pair, I know they are not cheap and usually the more expensive they are the better padding and stitching. But it is so worth it on the long rides. Your sit bones and nether regions will thank you.
Donnie Morlan June 22, 2012 at 06:22 PM
Oh by the way, I prefer tight...
B.A. Morelli June 22, 2012 at 07:55 PM
For long rides I prefer tight
Jenny Thoeny June 23, 2012 at 09:05 PM
You want the padding. Have you ever considered the skort? Check out the Terry products. terrybicycles.com. They make women's specific bike bottoms - good variety and cute! To stay "healthy," get the shorts off as soon as possible after the ride. After you wash them, get them as dry as possible before you wear them again. Two pairs is a good idea. Have a great ride!
Anne Carothers-Kay June 23, 2012 at 10:39 PM
If you're on your bike every day, you should have AT LEAST 3 pairs of padded shorts. Bike skorts are good and cute!
Michelle Gin June 25, 2012 at 04:26 PM
Thanks for the insight, Donnie. I think I'm going to end up getting one of each.
Michelle Gin June 25, 2012 at 04:28 PM
Thanks, Mary! I did recently check out Terry products and sent their founder an e-mail. Let's hope she gets it and would like to support the International Peace Bike Tour! As for the healthy tips, that is mentally noted and will be followed through. Thanks again!
Maria Houser Conzemius June 25, 2012 at 09:52 PM
Biking skorts are too hard to get on and off when you're going to the bathroom. A friend of mine has a nice, light overskirt she bought separately to go over her bike shorts (which are tight), and that looks like a better way to go.
Maria Houser Conzemius June 25, 2012 at 09:53 PM
I've been disappointed in Terry products. They cost too much and the first Terry bike shorts I bought years ago were awful. They pilled terribly. Maybe they're better now, but they're still over-priced.
Michelle Gin June 25, 2012 at 10:01 PM
Good to know! I'll keep that in mind. Thanks, Maria!

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