Women's Cycling Shorts provide comfort so you can Ride Longer and Feel Stronger.
Find comfort on your bicycle with Aero Tech's selection of women's cycling shorts. To help you experience longer bicycle rides, we have a wide selection of women's bike shorts. Road biking shorts which are typical spandex padded, and loose fitting (some call baggies) mountain biking shorts, spandex skin shorts and triathlon shorts designed for swim-bike-run. Looking for a women's cycling short? We have regular size women's cycling shorts on this page and Plus Women's Cycling Shorts We use comfortable stretch fabric so you can have freedom of movement. If you ride more than a few miles, you might consider a padded underwear short that will cushion your ride. If you are a road rider or want extra comfort, we have several long distance pads in a variety of densities or gel within the chamois. Want to quickly see the differences? Cycling Shorts Overview for Women Women's Road Bike Shorts are available in a variety of styles and brands and are typical of the spandex padded bike short. The looser fitting women's cycling shorts are referred to as "baggy" or "MTB" Mountain Bike Shorts. We also have capri length and full length tights. Read more about how padded cycling shorts work.
The single most important part of a women’s bike short is the chamois pad. Women’s padded cycling shorts are designed to perform three main functions: To absorb shock and road vibrations from riding, to allow freedom of movement while pedaling, and to control abrasion while riding. Women’s chamois pads typically have a thicker center through the crotch, whereas men’s chamois pads are often designed with a cutout in this area to relieve pressure.
The best chamois pads are designed with a focus on the pelvic ischium bones (or, your “sitting bones”). The ischium bones support your body’s weight and are your body’s main contact points with your bicycle’s saddle so the chamois pad is very important and your comfort depends on it. Everyone’s body type, riding style and posture, and personal preferences play a part in determining the best style of chamois pad for them and there are several choices and styles to choose from. Aero Tech Designs uses chamois pads in our product line that range from thick to thin and from dense to lightweight to help every cyclist find the right support for their needs.
The value and utility of a chamois pad is best understood and appreciated when riding for more than 10 to 15 miles at a time. After passing beyond this mileage, a cyclist’s sit bones usually start to become uncomfortable because they have been bearing the full weight of the rider with no support aside from your bike’s saddle. Underwear seams can start to rub and cause irritation after this time frame as well. Because of this, padded bike shorts are designed to be worn without underwear so that the pad is next to your skin. This prevents rubbing or abrasion from a layer of fabric between your body and chamois pad. Also, cotton underwear is not designed to wick moisture and you do not want to introduce bacteria and other chafing issues to a growing threat of saddle sores.
Stretchy fabrics that contain spandex are most commonly used to engineer padded cycling shorts because they allow freedom of movement and support your muscles with soothing, massaging muscle compression. Instead of cotton, bike shorts choose nylon and polyester as the most common base fabric that is knitted with spandex to be both rugged and comfortable no matter how long you’re in the saddle.
Aero Tech Designs, like most manufacturers, uses leg bands and grippers in many of our padded cycling shorts because they help to prevent shorts from riding up your legs as you pedal repeatedly. With each pedal stroke, your muscles are flexing and contracting and your legs are stretching out and bending at the knees. While fluid, this repeated motion can cause your shorts to ride up your legs over time. And constantly adjusting and tugging on your shorts mid-ride quickly becomes annoying. Also, if left unattended, shorts that ride up your legs can lead to fabric bunching up at the inside of your thighs. This bunched up material can cause chafing on the sensitive skin inside your legs as they rub on your saddle with each pedal stroke. The chamois pad can also be subjected to bunching, which quickly leads to rubbing, chafing and – worst of all – saddle sores. Various forms of leg grippers and elastics prevent this movement so that your shorts stay stretched along your legs and, most importantly, the chamois stays in place.
Placing reflective elements on the moving areas of your leg creates a moving reflective area that attracts the eyes and attention of motorists in low light and dark conditions.
Padded bike shorts are designed to fit snug, like a second skin, right against your skin. This maximizes the ability of the moisture wicking fabric and it gives your chamois pad the best chance to stay comfortably in place during your ride. Properly tight-fitting cycling shorts also supports your leg muscles with gentle compression that helps limit the buildup of lactic acid and prevent delayed onset muscle soreness post-ride. If you haven’t worn bike shorts before and you’re trying them on for the first time, it is important to remember that they should fit snug but they should not be too tight or binding that they are uncomfortable. If you are new to cycling, bike shorts will fit more snugly than you are used to other clothing fitting, but they need to be tight to provide these benefits. But they should not be uncomfortable to the point of biding.
Panels – Most padded cycling shorts will include a multi-panel design that often includes 6, 8 or more panels. Multi-panel shorts provide excellent muscle compression and are very comfortable to wear.
Inseam – Personal preference typically dictates how long you would like your inseam to be, but it is important to remember that you do not want an inseam too long where it will reach the back of your knee. They should stop a few inches above your knee so that you don’t have fabric contacting the back of your knee as you pedal. Aero Tech Designs manufactures bike shorts in regular, tall (about 11 inches) and short (about 5-7 inches) inseam lengths.
Elastics – Waist elastic is essential when it comes to keeping your shorts in place during your ride. Wider elastic is less likely to roll down as your body shifts into the cycling position (leaning slightly forward, reaching out to the handlebars). Some styles use a drawstring waistband, which can come in handy for multi-sport activities like triathlons and other fitness events.
Bike shorts are designed to fit snug or the rider risks missing out on the potential benefits and introducing discomfort to their ride. Getting the most out of your padded bike shorts means finding the right size and style for yourself. It is always a good idea to refer to the manufacturer’s size chart before ordering and some styles from the same manufacturer can have slightly different size charts, depending on the fit or style of a particular item.
Caring for Your Shorts
Women’s padded cycling shorts should be laundered after each use. We recommend machine wash and air dry. Machine washing removes all bacteria from the chamois pad. Riding in consistently clean shorts reduces your risk of developing saddle sores from chamois pad bacteria. Because bike shorts are designed to wick moisture, air drying in a well-ventilated area is usually very reliable and it removes the risk of a heated dryer reacting negatively with the synthetic fabrics that make up your bike shorts. Additionally, air drying doesn’t stress the rubber spandex fibers like a heated dryer would, which helps your favorite shorts last longer so that you can “Ride Longer, Feel Stronger.”
Women’s Padded Bike Shorts Should be Worn Without Underwear
Anti-chafe cream can be applied to your skin as well as your bike shorts and chamois pad to keep everything lubricated and moving freely during your ride. Generally, most cyclists only use anti-chafe creams for long distance rides and the creams can be reapplied mid-ride as needed. Anti-chafe creams help prevent abrasion hot spots from forming and anti-chafe creams are essential for most long distance touring endeavors or century rides.