In this article, we’ll explore the best triathlon shorts for women 2023. I’ve taken both my own experience, and other womens expereience into account.
Best triathlon shorts for women
- MY KILOMETRE Womens Triathlon Shorts ($41.99)
- Zoot Women’s LTD Tri Shorts ($105)
- SLS3 Triathlon Shorts for Women ($68.90)
- Pearl iZUMi Women’s SELECT Pursuit Tri Shorts ($56.27)
- Zoot Women’s Core 6-Inch Tri Shorts ($80.00)
Budget-friendly Triathlon Shorts for women
Top 5 Triathlon Shorts for Women in 2023
Below you’ll find the reviews on my top 5 choices of triathlon shorts.
MY KILOMETRE Womens Triathlon Shorts
In my experience, MY KILOMETRE triathlon shorts for women are a standout choice for both triathlon training and races. Their comfort is impressive, particularly considering the price point. The shorts run true to size, and the material is of good quality, contributing to a great fit that isn’t too snug.
I found the chamois soft with the right amount of padding, striking a balance between comfort and not being too bulky. Despite some initial concerns about chafing, I was pleasantly surprised by the effectiveness of the elastic on the leg openings, and they held up well across several workouts and a sprint triathlon.
One of the best features of these triathlon shorts is the quick-dry padding and fabric. Even during high-intensity workouts, sweat dissipated quickly, keeping me comfortable. I also found the built-in pockets handy, especially during longer rides.
While some people might find them slightly long for their taste, I didn’t mind the length. However, the leg band took some getting used to due to its snug fit. That being said, it does ensure the shorts stay in place during all phases of a triathlon.
One word of caution, though: while the shorts are great for biking and running, I felt a slight drag when swimming, potentially due to the chamois. If you’re planning to use them primarily for swimming or triathlons, this might be something to consider.
Despite this minor issue, I consider MY KILOMETRE triathlon shorts as one of the best triathlon shorts available. I’ve ordered a second pair, and I’m confident they will continue to be a staple in my triathlon gear collection.
Zoot Women’s LTD Tri Short
Based on my experience, Zoot Women’s LTD 6-Inch Tri Shorts are among the best triathlon shorts I’ve tried. They offer an excellent fit that feels great and looks fantastic, too. The chamois is well-positioned, providing an ideal fit and the comfort necessary for longer rides.
The functionality of these triathlon shorts is commendable as well. I appreciated the leg grips which kept the shorts in place while cycling, eliminating any concern about them riding up. The waistband design could be improved; a wider, stretch-type waistband would be more comfortable compared to the current narrow drawstring.
However, something to be mindful of is the sizing; they tend to run small. Typically, I wear a medium, but in this case, an XL was a better fit. Once I nailed the size, though, the shorts were super comfortable, fast-drying, and had a stylish design that I loved.
Overall, the Zoot Women’s LTD 6-Inch Tri Shorts are a fantastic investment, combining great value, stylish looks, and practicality, making them a top contender in the race for the best triathlon shorts for women.
SLS3 Tri Shorts for Women
Based on my personal experience, the SLS3 Tri Shorts for Women are also among the best triathlon shorts I’ve had the pleasure of trying. I had concerns about the fit and size, but they turned out to be perfect. The shorts held up exceptionally well across all three disciplines – swimming, cycling, and running. Even better, they were complimented on their stylish look.
One of the notable features of these shorts is their comfort. Even when worn for the first time during a demanding Half Ironman Triathlon, I encountered no issues with rubbing or discomfort, thanks to the clever design and appropriate use of chamois cream. The padding on the bike ride was spot-on: sufficient without being too bulky, a common issue with other brands I’ve tried.
Additionally, these triathlon shorts are exceptionally efficient when it comes to drying post-swim, making the cycling and running stages much more comfortable. The shorts also come with a “stay put” stickiness feature on the legs, ensuring they remain in place throughout the event.
However, there is some room for improvement. The lack of side pockets was a minor inconvenience, and the padding might not suit everyone – it’s a thin design that might not offer enough comfort for some during the bike ride, and could possibly interfere when running.
In summary, the SLS3 Tri Shorts for Women are a fantastic investment, striking a great balance between comfort, utility, and style – they truly stand out as some of the best triathlon shorts for women that I have tried.
Pearl iZUMi Women’s SELECT Pursuit Tri Shorts
hese triathlon shorts truly epitomize a marriage of style, quality, and functionality.
One of the standout attributes of these shorts is their high-quality fabric, which feels premium to the touch. A testament to Pearl iZUMi’s enduring reputation for superior quality, these shorts promise durability and longevity, even under strenuous athletic conditions.
They are lightweight and have an exceptional quick-drying capability, a critical feature for any triathlon event. Plus, they come with a handy lumbar pocket, perfect for carrying your essential items during the race.
The shorts are wonderfully form-fitting, an aspect that many users, including myself, appreciate. Their snug fit and efficient leg elastic ensure the shorts stay in place throughout various activities, providing a comfortable and distraction-free athletic experience.
However, it’s important to note that these are advanced triathlon shorts designed with a specific user profile in mind. The padding is minimal, focusing on a streamlined, lightweight design rather than extra cushioning. This feature makes these shorts an ideal choice for seasoned triathletes who prefer a more authentic, close-to-body feel during their rides and runs.
In summary, the Pearl iZUMi Women’s SELECT Pursuit Tri Shorts, with their perfect blend of quality, functionality, and fit, truly stand out as a top choice for advanced triathletes. If you’re a seasoned athlete seeking high-performance triathlon shorts that offer a superior fit and excellent quality, these shorts could well be your perfect match.
Zoot Women’s Core 6-Inch Tri Short
From the moment I slipped into these shorts, I was struck by their comfortable fit and functionality.
What makes these shorts stand out is their perfect balance of minimal but sufficient padding. It’s ideal for short to mid-distance rides, ensuring comfort without feeling too bulky. And these shorts aren’t just designed for the bike; they’re equally comfortable during the run portion of a triathlon.
One caveat, though: they do run a bit small. I’d suggest sizing up to avoid the dreaded ‘muffin top’ and ensure a more flattering, comfortable fit. For instance, even though I’m of an average build, I found the extra-large size to be the most comfortable fit for me.
In terms of aesthetics, I did find the color panels somewhat limiting when it came to pairing with different tops. But that’s a minor issue. The black option, in particular, is a versatile choice that can easily match with any of your sports tops.
The shorts even come with handy side pockets, perfect for carrying a gel pack or a small, flat water bottle. This added functionality makes them a practical choice for any triathlete.
To sum up, the Zoot Women’s Core 6-Inch Tri Shorts are a fantastic option if you’re seeking a well-made, comfortable, and functional pair of triathlon shorts. Their design and features show a clear understanding of a triathlete’s needs, making them a worthy investment for any triathlon enthusiast.
Importance of Choosing the Right Triathlon Shorts
The right pair of triathlon shorts can significantly impact your performance during a race. These shorts are designed to provide support during all triathlon stages – swimming, biking, and running.
The best triathlon shorts for women 2023 will offer improved comfort, lessen fatigue, and ultimately increase speed and performance.
Factors to Consider When Buying Triathlon Shorts
When shopping for the best triathlon shorts for women, consider the following features:
- Material and Fabric: Choose shorts made from quick-drying, breathable material that maintains its shape and comfort throughout the race.
- Padding or Chamois: Look for shorts with adequate padding to provide comfort during the bike stage, but not so much that it hinders your running or swimming.
- Leg Length and Grippers: These elements are essential to prevent ride-up and chafing during the race.
- Waistband and Comfort: A comfortable waistband that doesn’t dig into your skin is a must.
- Pockets and Storage: Some athletes prefer shorts with pockets for storing energy gels or other small items.
- Style and Design: While not as crucial as other factors, the style and design can boost your confidence on race day.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Selecting the perfect pair of triathlon shorts can be a complex process, with various factors to consider. You might have questions about sizing, materials, the significance of specific features, and more.
To help guide you in this process, we’ve compiled and answered some of the most frequently asked questions related to the best triathlon shorts for women 2023. These answers provide useful insights into the important aspects to consider when choosing your ideal pair of triathlon shorts.
How do I choose the right size of triathlon shorts?
Choosing the right size of triathlon shorts is crucial for comfort and performance. It’s not merely about picking your regular clothing size, as sizing can differ between brands and designs. Therefore, always refer to the manufacturer’s size chart which typically outlines the measurements for the waist, hips, and inseam.
To get your accurate measurements, use a flexible tape measure. Your waist measurement should be taken at the narrowest point, while the hip measurement should be at the fullest part. The inseam measurement involves measuring from the inner thigh to the bottom of the ankle.
If your measurements fall in between sizes, it’s generally safer to opt for the larger size. A size too small may restrict your movement and cause discomfort, while a size too large may create drag in the water and chafing on the run. Remember, the right pair should fit snugly but not too tight, like a second skin.
Should triathlon shorts be tight or loose?
Triathlon shorts should provide a fit that is neither too tight nor too loose. A too tight pair can restrict your movement, potentially causing discomfort and even affecting your circulation, while a too loose pair can increase drag during the swimming leg, chafe during the running leg, and move around uncomfortably on the bike.
The right triathlon shorts should feel like a second skin, fitting snugly without restricting movement or causing discomfort. They should stay in place throughout all three legs of the triathlon, and the leg grippers should sit comfortably against your thighs without digging in or sliding up.
The fit also influences the functionality of the chamois (the padding in the shorts). A loose fit can lead to the chamois moving around, which might cause discomfort or chafing, especially during the cycling and running legs. Conversely, a good fit ensures that the chamois provides padding where you need it the most without interfering with your movement.
Can I use regular cycling shorts for a triathlon?
While you can technically use regular cycling shorts for a triathlon, they are not the ideal choice due to several factors. Cycling shorts are specifically designed for the demands of cycling, with more substantial padding and a fabric that may not be suitable for swimming or running.
The thicker padding in cycling shorts can absorb too much water during the swim, adding weight and increasing drag. It can also be uncomfortable and restrictive during the run. Moreover, cycling shorts are often made from materials that aren’t designed to dry quickly, which can lead to discomfort and chafing in the later stages of the race.
Triathlon shorts, on the other hand, are specifically designed for the multi-sport nature of a triathlon. They feature thinner, quick-drying padding that is enough to provide comfort on the bike but doesn’t interfere with the swim and run. The fabric of triathlon shorts also dries quickly post-swim to prevent chafing and discomfort during the bike and run legs.
Therefore, while cycling shorts can be used, the best triathlon shorts for women 2023 will provide a better balance of comfort and functionality across all three disciplines.
Can I wear underwear with my triathlon shorts?
It’s not recommended to wear underwear with your triathlon shorts. Triathlon shorts are designed to be worn directly against the skin. The reason for this is two-fold.
First, the padding in the shorts (also known as the chamois) is designed to sit directly against the skin to provide maximum comfort and reduce chafing during the cycling portion of the event. Wearing underwear can disrupt the placement of the chamois and reduce its effectiveness.
Second, additional layers of fabric, like underwear, can absorb and hold water after the swim portion of the triathlon, which can lead to increased discomfort and chafing during the bike and run portions. Moreover, most underwear isn’t designed for the physical demands of a triathlon, and the materials can cause irritation when soaked in sweat or water and subject to constant motion.
For these reasons, the best triathlon shorts for women 2023 are designed to be worn without any underwear. If chafing is a concern, consider applying an anti-chafing cream or balm on areas prone to chafing before the race.
What is the purpose of the padding in triathlon shorts?
The padding, also known as chamois, in triathlon shorts serves a crucial function: to provide comfort during the cycling portion of a triathlon. The chamois is strategically placed in the shorts to provide a cushion between your body and the bike seat, helping to reduce the discomfort and potential chafing that can come from prolonged periods of cycling.
Triathlon shorts usually have a thinner chamois compared to traditional cycling shorts. The reason for this is because a thick chamois can absorb too much water during the swim, become heavy, and not dry quickly enough before the run. Also, a bulky chamois might be uncomfortable and restrictive when running. Therefore, the best triathlon shorts for women 2023 have a chamois that offers enough padding for the bike while not interfering with the swim and run.
Are triathlon shorts necessary for training?
While not strictly necessary, training in your triathlon shorts can offer several benefits. One of the main benefits is that it allows you to get used to the feel and fit of the shorts. This can be especially useful if you are new to the sport or if you have bought a new pair of shorts for the upcoming race season.
Using your triathlon shorts in training can help you identify any potential issues, like chafing or fit problems, that you might not discover until race day. It also allows the shorts (particularly the chamois) to conform to your body shape, which can enhance comfort.
Another advantage of training in your triathlon shorts is that it gives you the opportunity to practice your transitions. Simulating race conditions, including wearing the same gear, can help you streamline your transition process and save valuable time during the race.
Can I use triathlon shorts for other sports?
Yes, triathlon shorts are versatile and can be used for individual swimming, cycling, or running workouts. However, they are designed with the specific demands of triathlon in mind and may not provide the same level of specialized comfort or performance as sport-specific gear.
For example, while the padding in triathlon shorts is beneficial for a triathlon or a short cycle ride, it may not be enough for long-distance cycling. Similarly, triathlon shorts can be used for a swim workout, but they might not provide the same level of performance as dedicated swimwear.
That being said, if you’re comfortable in your triathlon shorts and they meet your needs for a specific workout, there’s no reason you can’t use them. They’re designed to be durable, comfortable, and functional, making them suitable for various athletic activities.
What materials are best for triathlon shorts?
The best triathlon shorts for women 2023 are usually made from a blend of nylon and spandex (or Lycra), although other materials such as polyester can also be used. These materials are chosen for their specific qualities that make them ideal for triathlon gear.
Nylon and polyester are durable materials that can withstand the demands of a triathlon, including exposure to chlorine, saltwater, and UV rays, and repeated washing. They also retain their shape well and resist pilling.
Spandex (or Lycra) is a stretchy material that provides the shorts with flexibility, allowing them to move with your body during the swim, bike, and run. This helps to minimize restrictions on your movement and enhances comfort.
One of the most critical factors in choosing the material is its quick-drying property. The material needs to dry quickly after the swim to prevent chafing and discomfort during the bike and run.
Why do triathlon shorts have grippers on the legs?
Grippers on the legs of triathlon shorts serve a crucial purpose: to keep the shorts firmly in place. During the course of a triathlon – especially during the swim and run – shorts without grippers can ride up your legs. This can lead to discomfort, distractions, and even chafing.
Grippers are typically made from silicone or other similar materials and are designed to lightly adhere to the skin without causing discomfort or restriction. This ensures that the shorts stay in the right place, providing consistent coverage and protection, and also helping the chamois to stay in position.
However, it’s essential that the grippers fit correctly. If they’re too tight, they can dig into your skin and cause discomfort. If they’re too loose, the shorts might slide up and down your legs. Therefore, the best triathlon shorts for women 2023 have grippers that provide a secure, yet comfortable, fit.
How important are pockets in triathlon shorts?
The importance of pockets in triathlon shorts can depend on personal preference and the distance of your race. Pockets provide a convenient place to store small items, such as energy gels, bars, or even small personal items like keys.
For longer distance triathlons, having pockets in your shorts can be particularly beneficial. Energy gels or bars can help maintain your energy levels during the race, and having them within easy reach in your shorts’ pockets can be more convenient than storing them on your bike or in a separate bag.
However, for shorter races, you may not need to carry nutrition, and some triathletes may prefer shorts without pockets for a sleeker, more streamlined fit.
When considering whether to choose shorts with pockets, it’s worth thinking about what you need to carry with you during the race and how you prefer to access these items. Some people find it easy to reach items in their shorts’ pockets during a race, while others might find it distracting or uncomfortable. The best triathlon shorts for women 2023 offer a variety of designs, with and without pockets, to suit different preferences and needs.