In most sports, the uniform you wear really doesn’t matter all that much. No matter what colour uniform you wear in cricket, football, rugby, or other team sports, a jersey is just a jersey, important for symbolic reasons, perhaps, but probably not a determining factor in how well you actually perform. The same can be said for many solo sports—chances are that golf polo shirt you’re wearing isn’t going to have a big impact on your game.
Cycling is different. In cycling, every last second matters, which means every little advantage you can garner for yourself is huge. In a sports where tenths of a second can define careers, you want an outfit which can give you those few extra heartbeats over everyone else. That means finding a jersey which fits you well, no matter the weather, making a long sleeve cycling jersey a must-have for anyone truly serious about the sport.
Why Long Sleeves Matter
It’s worth asking why long sleeves matter in the first place. Is it just the aesthetic appeal which makes them popular among cyclists, or is there something more to it? While they certainly are aesthetically pleasing, there are tangible benefits to having a long sleeved jersey. For one thing, longer sleeves mean more protection from the cold, which can prove invaluable in a variety of situations. Keeping your skin warm is critical to ensuring you’re able to reach your peak come race day, which in turn might mean slipping on long sleeves to stay warm throughout the race. Naturally, if your race takes place in a cooler climate, you’ll likewise want to look into warmer clothing options.
So, you’ve decided that long sleeves are for you after all. Great—now what type of things should you look for in a long sleeve jersey? After all, simply having long sleeves is hardly enough to guarantee victory. As with so much involving cycling, it truly is the little advantages which add up to big game-changing bonuses here. For example, finding long sleeve materials which are not just comfortable but flexible, so as to allow for a full range of movement, are essential to ensuring you are able to move and thus race to the fullest of your potential. Other added benefits, such as an injected gripper on the cuffs of your sleeves, can likewise add a bit of a boost. You’ll want to pay attention to the actual fabrics involved—many of the best blends will feature polyester and elastane. Flat stitching is another nice bonus, helping ensure that you do not chafe while riding and thus allowing you to ride with confidence and comfort. Finally, you’ll want to pick a material which breathes well. One of the biggest mistake cyclists make is picking jerseys which are so snug and tight they do not let their skin breathe, which can cause a whole host of problems.
Ride to win with a great long sleeved jersey optimised for the best cyclists in the world.