Basic Guide To Cycling Jerseys
Fashion, function and form all play pivotal roles in jersey design. The ideal jersey is one that looks good, fits well, regulates body temperature, and has rear pockets for carrying extra clothes, food, and other essential personal items like cash and your mobile phone. Here’s a look at the key areas to examine when buying a cycling jersey:
Fabric: Most cycling jerseys are made from synthetic materials designed to wick moisture away from your body, keeping you dry and comfortable. The most effective materials are Polyester, Polyester/Lycra blends, or Proprietary Polyester weaves and blends.
Fit: If you plan on racing, or just hate the idea of material flopping in the wind during a speedy descent, look for jerseys with a “Race” fit. These will be snug at the waist, sleeves, neck and chest, providing increased aerodynamic efficiency.
If you’re a more casual rider who prefers a little extra room to move around in, then opt for a looser “Club” or “Recreation” fit. These jerseys fit like a golf shirt, with more room in the shoulders and mid-section than a Race fit jersey.
Zipper: Zipper length changes both the way a jersey fits, the amount of ventilation it can provide, and its price. You’ll typically pay a little more for a jersey with a full-length zipper, but on a brutal hot day being able to fully unzip is a nice bonus. A 10-inch zipper allows easy removal and some venting, while a 14-inch zipper goes down to just above the navel for increased ventilation. One other consideration is how tight the jersey is. Jerseys with full length zippers, which open like a button down shirt, are a lot easier to get off.
Sleeves: Cycling jersey sleeves typically fall into two categories, traditional and raglan. Traditional sleeves have a seam that runs nearly straight up from the armpit. Raglan sleeves have a seam the run from the neckline to the armpit. Most cycling jersey are of the raglan variety because this set-up provides greater range of motion and is more comfortable, especially when you’re riding in a low aerodynamic position.