How to choose your “go-to” cycling tops
There’s so much more to choosing cycling tops – or bike jerseys – than just finding patterns and colors you like. Finding the right tops for your riding style, comfort preferences and performance needs will make all your rides more fun and enjoyable.
We’re here to help you navigate all the choices. Here’s the low-down from the team of experts here at Terry:
Sleeves – for all seasons and reasons
Striking the right balance between warmth, ventilation, and sun protection is your first consideration. It’s the biggest reason why most cyclists collect a variety of cycling tops – to make sure they have just the right jersey for any weather conditions they expect to ride in.
The other big reason is all those terrific patterns and colors –so you always have great answers to “What do I feel like wearing today?”
Don’t forget about the cycling bolero – a very useful addition to your cycling wardrobe. Wear over short sleeve cycling tops for extra protection against sun or cold air, then stow it easily when conditions change.
Is it your style?
Are you a road rider who goes out for hours at a time, or more of a recreational rider? Would you like to be able to use your top for a variety of activities? Selecting the right jersey should be a function of the kind of riding you’re going to be doing, the kind of weather you’ll be likely to encounter, the amount of coverage you want or don’t want and of course, what you want to spend. We offer something in every category: short sleeve, sleeveless, long sleeve styles in everything from ultralight mesh to thermal fleece-backed fabric.
Another biggie for cycling has to do with pockets, both in numbers and in placement. Handy as can be for extended rides and on-the-fly support, open rear pockets can carry phone, energy bars, light wind jacket, sunscreen, an extra water bottle and a host of necessities that would otherwise require a pack. Look for pockets that are easy reach, plenty deep and with some security for key or credit card.
The jerseys and cycling tops you’ll find at Terry fall into three general fit categories:
- Athletic Form-fitted for best moisture wicking and aerodynamics to minimize wind resistance and flapping. Typically these are considered “performance” tops and are well suited for intensive riding. See athletic fit options here.
- Semi-Fitted Body contoured, but not tight, this fit splits the difference between athletic and relaxed fit tops. Suited for touring and fitness/recreational riding where aerodynamics are less important than all-day, on/off bike comfort. Browse semi-fitted cycling top options here.
- Relaxed Loose against the body. Unusual to find in the cycling industry, we offer several tops in this fit category for riders who simply don’t want to wear anything tight but do want the features of a technical top. Shop relaxed fit tops here.
Fabric & Technology.
So which fabrics are best for cycling tops? The world has exploded with technical man-made fabric options, all-natural performance alternatives, sustainable fibers like bamboo and a host of yarns, treatments and finishes that can add certain characteristics. All of these have something to offer. Look for fabrics that have good technical properties like the ones listed below.
There are so many different fabric blends available in sportswear today, but they can and do differ in their levels of moisture control, heat management, UPF factor, texture, anti-odor control and stretch/resilience. Here are a few excellent fabrics that we use in our tops, and why use them.
- CoolMax®: An engineered fabric that transports more moisture than other fabrics, whether they’re natural or synthetic. Because of its unique fiber construction, CoolMax® moves perspiration quickly to the outside of your bicycle jersey where it evaporates. Thus it keeps you cool and dry supporting optimum performance throughout your ride. Find bike clothing using CoolMax here.
- Polyester/Lycra® Micromesh: This combination of 100% micro denier yarns with small mesh openings makes for a very lightweight fabric that breathes, wicks moisture and has a very soft hand against the skin. Ideal in high heat/aerobic conditions.
- AMY®: Less bacteria means less odor. Amazing technology embedded in A.M.Y.® permanently inhibits the growth of odor causing bacteria, mold, mildew and algae on fabric. A.M.Y.® extends garment life with less discoloration and degradation. A.M.Y. is environmentally safe.
- MYNX® UV: Clothes made with MYNX® UV provide cyclists with sun protection against UVA (aging) and UVB (burning) rays. MYNX® UV offers permanent sun protection up to 50+ UPF rating, depending upon fabric construction and color and maintains a 100% UPF rating in wet and dry fabrics. Mynx® UV provides fabric with a soft, cool hand and subdued luster and is perfect for lightweight fabrics. Check out some options using MYNX protection here.
- Merino Wool: Where wool is considered one of nature’s miracle fabrics, merino is the crème de la crème for cycling. Finest and softest wool of any sheep, Merino makes a great next-to-skin natural fabric alternative for cyclists. It excels at regulating body temperature, providing a high degree of warmth to weight so you don’t have to bulk up. It is also excellent for moisture wicking, is slightly moisture repellent, has lanolin for antibacterial properties and can be aired out rather than washed with each use. Browse jerseys and more in merino here.
Ready to explore? See all our bike tops here.