The art of wearing the right cycling kit

choosing the right cycling kit - best waterproof jersey

It took Goldilocks three attempts to get the right porridge, the right sized chair and the perfect bed. For us cyclists, on a ride, we don’t have the luxury of taking three different choices of kit with us!

The boffins at stolen goat have crunched the data and created a little table that charts the comprehensive stolen goat range against the varying temperatures and conditions Mother Nature tends to throw at us. We’ve created kit so awesome it should keep you cycling all year round.

Of course this is just a guide. Goldilocks had it easy; she didn’t have to factor in things like ride intensity and the type of terrain we ride. Consequently riding up and downhill may require you to think slightly differently to that of a ride going flat out on the flat.

stolen goat temperature guide

So, how the table works.

We’re going to work back from what we know is comfortable. A sunny dry ride of 18°c (64F) or above will put a smile on anyone’s face, especially when you head out in your favourite Bodyline cycling jersey and Bodyline One bib shorts!

orkaan everyday jersey ls pink front ladies 4If the ride is a bit cooler, that’s when we need to have a think about what we’d recommend; perhaps a base, then a gilet or both. Below 15°c (59F) that’s when you probably want to think about protecting those knees. leg warmers and arm warmers are great pieces of functional clothing that have the versatility to come off should temperatures rise. If temperatures forecast won’t rise above 12-14°c (54F) then, for practicality you might choose a long sleeve jersey, ¾ tights (or even full tights) as you won’t see temperatures rise to warrant the use of arm/knee warmers.

It would be easy if there was a constant temperature throughout the ride but it’s never that simple. Temperature range can have a major impact on your comfort level so consider the length of the ride and the temperature at both the start and end of your ride. A bomb-proof Climb and Conquer winter jacket is perfect at 2°c (36F) but you may find, 4hrs into a ride, the temperature has risen to 14°c (55F), your comfort may be compromised.

When you need to factor in changeable weather conditions and showers, comfort can be quickly undone by showers and blustery conditions with thin layers where water and wind can penetrate.

When the weather doesn’t know what it wants to do, the stolen goat Orkaan Capsule is the answer. Being both wind and water resistant, this breathable fabric has the ability to help regulate a comfortable body temperature across expansive temperature ranges and weather conditions. It should be a staple of any cycling kit drawer.

Here are some tips to help get it right before you walk out the front door:

  • If you step outside the front door and fail to feel the cold, then you’ve probably overdressed. If you’re toasty before you get on the bike think about how hot you’ll be when you’re spinning those pedals!
  • Extremities feel it first. Your legs, feet and hands will feel cold first. Cover or uncover as needed.
  • When your ride has a wide range of temperatures, then thin layers will help. A windproof gilet will stop that penetrable cold. Work out what you’d need at the end of the ride and dress accordingly it’s easy to peel off a gilet and arm warmers mid ride.

We’ll see you on the road.