Be More Comfortable. Ride Longer.
You can go biking without special apparel, but using it makes riding much more comfortable. Good cycling apparel moves with you, wicks away sweat, and puts padding in all of the right places. That means you'll be more comfortable on your bicycle, ride longer, and more often!
What We Carry
These days we're not stocking jerseys or outer-wear, but you can count on us for an entry level pair of shorts (classic, baggies, or underliners from $35 to $60), or anything you might need for your extremities: gloves, socks, hats, ear bands, arm and leg warmers, and balaclavas.
More About Cycling Apparel
- Cycling Shorts: not for the look
- Bicycle Jerseys: keep yourself cool and prevent chilling
- Bicycle Gloves: for comfort & protection
- Cycling Shoes: go faster, longer, easier
- Cycling Socks: the biggest difference $10 can buy
Those skintight cycling shorts you see bikers wear are all about comfort. They have padding sewn in the crotch to prevent saddle soreness. But why skintight? Because the close fit keeps the padding in place and helps the garment move with you rather than wrinkle and bunch.
Better shorts use eight or more panels of fabric in the construction for a better fit. Seams are strategically placed and flat-sewn for comfort. You'll also see "leg grabbers" in the cuffs to prevent the shorts from sliding up and down your legs as you pedal. Cycling shorts are actually a well thought out piece of gear
Nothing is worn underneath your cycling shorts.
Fortunately, since many of us feel uncomfortable in skintight shorts, manufacturers also offer some other, more flattering types of shorts. These days you can find cargos, baggies, or simple suplex shorts. All have a secondary pair of padded shorts sewn into them for that all important seat comfort. You can also buy the padded liners separately to wear under anything you want. We stock the classic cycling shorts, the more casual wear, and the underliners. Expect to spend anywhere from $35 to $60.
The main benefit of jerseys is that they keep you cool when it's hot and prevent chilling when it's cold. This is accomplished by using special fabrics that wick moister away from the skin and evaporate it quickly through the fabric. Jerseys also have pockets located in the lower back that provide easy access to things while you're riding, like energy bars. We recommend a jersey with a zippered neck for temperature control, especially in the winter time. You can zip down when you warm up or zip up when you get cold. We also recommend bright colors for high visibility. Plan on spending anywhere from $40 to $75 for a good jersey.
Gloves serve two functions. First, they increase your comfort by reducing road vibration and hand fatigue. Secondly, they protect your hands in the event of a fall. Good cycling gloves are made with light, breathable fabrics to keep your hands cool; they have strategically place padding to reduce tingling fingers from compressed nerves; and they have a section of terry cloth sewn on the back for wiping your brow or nose. By the way, it's OK to remove your gloves by turning them inside out. Besides being faster, this method also reduces the risk of pulling the stitching out of the fingers. Our best gloves are $35, but prices start at $15.
Typical Road Shoes
Cycling shoes increase your efficiency by providing better power transfer to the pedals. Although they are not really necessary for casual rides or short jaunts around the neighborhood, cycling shoes become more important as your rides get longer.
Shoes fall into two categories: Road and SPD.
A road shoe is a lightweight, stiff soled, smooth bottomed shoe. The stiff sole improves power transfer to the pedals by reducing shoe flex while pedaling. A cleat is bolted to the sole. It fastens the shoe to the pedal and enables you to pull up as well as push down on the pedals. While significantly improving your efficiency, however, this kind of shoe is difficult to walk in because it is stiff and slippery, and because you have to walk on the cleat. Herein lies the main benefit of the SPD type shoe.
SPD Shoe for Recessed Cleat
With SPDs the cleat is recessed into the sole of the shoe, making them easier to walk in. Originally meaning Shimano Pedaling Dynamics, SPD is now a generic term referring to this design. Although less stiff than a road shoe, SPDs are good all-purpose shoes. The ability to walk in them makes them ideal for touring and commuting, but also fine for mountain biking, and road riding.
You'll find that SPDs come in a myriad of styles, but they basically break down into two categories: the more casual, all purpose type shoes, and mountain bike shoes. The more casual shoes, for touring or commuting, are lighter duty and designed with more flexible soles for walking. People often use this type of shoe for spinning as well. Mountain bike shoes, on the other hand, are built for more aggressive riding. They have much stiffer soles, a more aggressive tread pattern for walking in mud, and they fasten with Velcro straps.
SPD Shoe. Also Good for Spinning
Of course you'll choose your shoes according to the type of riding you're doing. Like any shoe, they should fit comfortably, not too tight, not too loose. If your shoes are too tight, toes will blister, go to sleep, or develop corns. If your shoes are too loose, your feet wallows around in them, loosing efficiency and defeating the benefit of using them.
We carry a couple of shoes from Louis Garneau: an SPD shoe called the Multi Rx for $85 and the Ergo Air II road shoe for $95.
Cycling socks are made with synthetic fabrics that quickly transport moisture away from your skin. They keep your feet cool, dry, and blister free. Once you've tried a nice pair of cycling socks, you never go back to your basic cotton threads. Thus, we have dubbed them "the biggest difference $10 can buy".
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Odds and Ends on Clearance
Do you think that you know bikes? Well, we've put together the Bicycle Aptitude Test to see who's got the stuff and who still needs the training wheels. So, go ahead. Don't be afraid...
Have a question about the world of bicycles? Whether it regards product information, technical issues, or riding the streets of Atlanta all you have to do is ask bicycle expert Mike Goodman, Intown Bicycles owner with over 30 years of experience in the industry.