Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Gear Review: EMS Transition Biking Shorts

Paper or plastic? Coke or Pepsi? Boxers or briefs? Spandex or relaxed fit shorts? Some questions are eternal.

Truth be told, I've lived on both sides of the fence.  Early in my mountain biking career I was modest, or maybe just cheap.  Form fitting lycra shorts were easier to find than regular looking shorts with the biking chamois.  However, they were a little snug for a reformed outdoorsman with a few extra pounds.  After finding that people didn't point and laugh (at least while I was looking), I became comfortable wearing the classic biking shorts out of the apartment. In addition to looking much cooler than regular shorts, true spandex biking shorts have no material to catch on your seat as you're moving around trying to keep your balance on technical sections of trail.

However, a couple of years ago I switched back to the cloth covered variety. This year, the EMS Transition Mountain Biking shorts have been my go-to shorts.

They've been very comfortable, and especially breathable.  There wasn't a ride this summer where I got an exceptional case of swamp ass.  In addition, the shorts are fast drying.  This came in handy more than once, when I decided to wear them swimming after a long hot day of biking.  While I only have one season on them, they've been durable.  I wore them multiple times per week over a full five months (more than fifty times) and they have yet to rip, tear or wear out.

These benefits far outweigh my gripes.  My biggest complaint was the pocket design.  while I liked the zip closure, I found the pocket placement (on he front of the thighs) to be cumbersome.  The position of the zippers require you to use your opposite hand to open the pocket and place items inside.

In all these are good shorts that I would happily recommend.

Perhaps they'll keep me out of the lycra shorts for another year, and for that my wife absolutely loves them.

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