On rainy days like today, waterproof cycling pants are essential. I have heard some riders scoff that these pants are unnecessary, but there are a number of health, hygienic, and comfort reasons that waterproof pants should be an essential part of your biking gear.
When you bike in the rain, the rainwater quickly saturates standard clothing and comes in contact with your skin. On a quick ride this poses no problems other than a little bit of discomfort, but during an extended ride it can be messy, uncomfortable, and actually unhealthy.
When you get wet outdoors, your body temperature begins to decrease. Some of this is counteracted by the effects of cycling, but during an extended ride, your body temperature may drop faster than exercise can raise it. Under severe conditions, this can actually put you at risk for hypothermia. Hypothermia causes undue strain on your body and, although you cannot get sick just from being cold, it can tax your immune system and make you more susceptible to viruses like the cold and flu.
Humidity and dampness offer an excellent breeding ground for bacteria, fungus, and viruses. They become active and can cause skin infections if your skin remains wet or even damp. This is another reason that wearing waterproof cycling pants is a great idea.
Unfortunately, with fungus and bacteria comes a host of hygiene issues. Bad skin hygiene including exposure to wet or dampness for long periods of time can result in rashes, skin irritation, and sloughing of skin. Minor skin irritations can be treated by using a soothing powder or a healing cream on the affected areas of the skin. More extensive irritations may require antifungal treatment or even a visit to your physician. In such cases, you will probably be kicking yourself for not wearing the correct attire.
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Waterproof cycling pants also offer a degree of comfort, even in rainy conditions. Some pairs are portable and can be kept with you at all times. When heavy rain begins, you simply slip them over your shorts or pants. Other pairs are meant to be worn in place of other attire and are great when you start a ride in the rain. Regardless of which kind you choose, your skin will remain warm and dry.
Riding comfortably may mean that you can ride for longer periods of time. Let’s face it – no one really WANTS to ride in the rain. When the raindrops are pelting your body it can be difficult to carry on. But when you wear waterproof gear, most of your body remains dry. This allows you to ride for longer distances and greater periods of time in moderate comfort.
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Even the best waterproof cycling pants and other rain gear are generally inexpensive. Pants can be purchased for as little as $30, and entire gear sets can be found on sale for $50. This seems a small price to pay for comfort on a rainy day. For me, if I can enjoy my sport and not feel waterlogged, any price is worth it!
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At Kass & Moses, we are more than just a team of bicycle crash attorneys. We are bikers, too! That’s why we put bikers first by promoting healthy biking activities and safety measures through our blog. If you have been involved in a bicycle crash, we encourage you to call us for guidance. We will do our best and work diligently to help you recover!