Not all Running Apparel is Created Equal
Just as there is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing;running apparel has become so much more than just the season’s hottest fashions. Today’s technical fabrics and garments are designed for today’s athletes and offer a fit for every “body” and condition.
What are Technical Features and Fabrics?
- Technical garments transfer, rather than absorb, sweat. Worn next to your skin - whether a top, sports bra, shorts, tights, or underwear - technical fabrics wick, or pull, moisture away from your body, helping you stay drier and more comfortable on the run.
- Created from synthetic or premium natural fibers, technical fabrics are lightweight and non-abrasive and should be what is closest to your skin during exercise.
- Features found in better technical apparel include flat-lock seams, vents, elasticity, and covered zippers to eliminate chafing or body irritation and allow for full range of motion.
- Specialized features including pockets, reflectivity and weather-proofed media storage keep you and your personal items safe.
- Elemental protection repels wind, moisture and sun, while breathability dissipates heat and antimicrobial capabilities will keep you fresh.
- Technical apparel dries fast and is less bulky than cotton, attributes that can make a tremendous difference in how you feel so you can maximize your workout.
Technical Fabrics in Extreme Weather
- Cotton shirts collect moisture and sweat resulting in a heavy/wet material. This combination causes you to become cold in lower temperatures and quick to overheat in warmer temperatures.
- Warm weather technical garments can be incorporated into cold-weather layering. The point of technical garments in the cold is to maintain warmth from heat created by a moving body without overheating or becoming restricted.
- Staying dryer increases performance in warmer temperatures and is essential in cold weather conditions and why additional layers must also be “wicking”.
- Layering technical fabrics will keep you warm in extreme conditions by trapping air between fabric layers while allowing moisture to evaporate.
- Technical jackets (the outermost layer) protect you from the elements by providing warmth, breathability, reflective elements, and are coated in DWR to keep you dry in the case of rain, wind, and snow.
The Bare Necessities
- Cotton underwear/boxers and sports bras will become wet and heavy when combined with moisture and may lead to discomfort and chaffing. Running shorts are lined with a brief or compression short made of technical fabric designed to dry quickly and pull moisture away from your skin. Technical running underwear is also available if you are partial to an added layer of protection. For more information on technical sports bras, please see our Sports Bra section below.
- Many people experience thigh chaffing when running/walking in cotton shorts. Compression shorts (which can be worn by themselves or under loosely fit shorts) provide the protection needed between thighs to avoid uncomfortable chaffing. Men and women alike experience this. Body Glide is a lubricated product that will protect any (and we mean ANY) part of the body that may experience chaffing.
Why is it so important to have a properly fitted sports bra?