The Top Gear to Get Before Getting on Your Bike

There are many different opinions out there on what to get when you start cycling--some true, others a bit out there. As a new cyclist, it's easy to get caught up in all of the different types of gear available--especially with the abundance of information out there. For instance, you might have heard that cyclists need to wear tight clothes to shave time off of their rides, or that they wear clothing with bold colors to be seen. In a way, this is true. Who wouldn't want to save time and energy or prevent being injured on the road? A bicycle and everything that comes with it can become expensive very easily. As a result, to gain the most benefit, you should consider getting yourself only the bikegear you need.

If you have a fixie bike, for instance, then you should probably only need a bike helmet. If you're riding a mountain bike in the hills, you should most likely get more gear to start.

To use this guide, first think about what bike you have and what you will do with it. Scroll down to the appropriate use case to see what you should get.

1. Cycling Jerseys

cycling jersey

These are made of special materials including polyester, lycra, and wool. The material is used so as to not allow sweat to accumulate in the garment like a regular t-shirt might. Perspiration gets dispersed quickly and dries instantly, over the surface area, letting you stay more comfortable during your ride. Nearly every cycling jersey also has pockets in the back. These pockets are practical for carrying items such as snacks, water and much more. You can also store other things such as personal gadgets in them as they are yours and you are at liberty to fill them up with whatever you like. To fetch something while you are cycling, all you need to do is to simply reach around your back.

Some factors to take into account when shopping for a jersey include what the weather is (will you need long sleeves or short sleeves?).Long sleeves are great for cooler days whereas short sleeves tend to be ideal for hotter days. You can simply stuff a short sleeve jersey into the back pocket of your long sleeve jersey just in case you too hot. Long sleeves that are just sleeves are also available to be used in conjunction with a short sleeved jersey. The amount of airflow can also be enhanced on a cycling jersey via a zipper. Most jerseys lack a zipper, however, there's a decent subsection of cycling jerseys which offers half zippers and full zippers. If you want to heat up fast, you will be better off with a jersey that has a half zipper since will moderate the air flow around your upper body.

2. Cycling Shorts

cycling shorts

Shorts can greatly help, but oftentimes a huge concern for beginner cyclists is the look of cycling shorts and the thought of wearing them. Although many cyclists think they can do without them, they are actually quite useful. Cycling shorts are constructed to make your time in the saddle more pleasant and comfortable. This means you can spend more time on the bike. Riding with the shorts around people who also wear them can help. Most likely, you will probably forget that you're wearing them once you hit the trail. If you are riding alone, wearing your pair of cycling shorts under your regular shorts can help.

The main thing you should look for a nice pair of cycling shorts is padding. In each pair, the padding is known as a chamois. Simply put, it is a padding sewn into the clothing that protects your sensitive areas and bottom. With a ride typically consisting of repeated movement and rubbing, this can help transform an otherwise long painful ride into several miles of fun. Anyone who has ever gone on a bike ride at one time or another suffers saddle-soreness.

3. Cycling Gloves

cycling gloves

Cycling gloves are another piece of cycling gear that the non-cycling crowd sees as unnecessary and worn by those who just want to show off. What the people fail to realize is that gloves can make a huge difference in the enjoyment of a ride. There are several different styles of cycling gloves including those accounting for weather (cold weather and warm weather gloves) and the ability to grip (full finger and short finger gloves). No matter the style that you choose, the ultimate result will be reduced abrasion on your hands and protection, especially for your palms.

4. Cycling Headgear

bicycle helmet

Helmets are, arguably, the most important form of protection money can buy when cycling. They help protect vital organs, including your brain, from experiencing damage. Helmets come in a variety of sizes and shapes. It is important to choose one that fits your head adequately and that you wear it appropriately. Use a measuring tape to measure your head at its largest circumference about the eyes to figure out what size helmet you should get. Read the instructions for prepping the helmet and wearing it correctly.

Apart from helmet, there are other forms of protective cycling headgear. Some are designed to keep your head warm in cold weather whereas others are intended to keep it cool in hot weather. Cycling headgear is made of special materials which draw the sweat from your body and let it evaporate more quickly.

There are many other items of bicycling gear which have been left out from this guide. Some of them include; cycling shoes, jackets, goggles and much more. The ones discussed above are arguably the most important. By starting with these you will not only be well protected but have a much more enjoyable time getting into the sport.

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