While you could just as easily wear jeans and a cotton t-shirt to ride your eBike, technical clothing is a lot more comfortable and protects you against the elements. We teamed up with the specialists at GORE® Wear and put together a list of things you should pay attention to before buying your new riding kit.
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Riding essentials

Padded cycling shorts are the cornerstone of every good riding kit and we generally find that bib shorts offer a better fit than those without shoulder straps. While models from the GORE® C7-line feature a complex cut and a high-quality, supportive fit and breathable padding, even entry-level models like the GORE® C3 provide superb protection and excellent comfort.

“As a rule of thumb, the longer the ride, the more important the fit of your bib shorts is and the more time you should take to make your decision!” explains GORE® Wear Product Manager Jürgen Erd.

GORE® Wear C3 Trail Shorts

Skin-tight Lycra may be popular amongst road cyclists, but modern eMTBers prefer wearing a pair of loosely-fitting cycling shorts on top. The outer material should be sturdy and the cut should allow for maximum freedom of movement. Casual gear like the GORE® C5 Trail Shorts have a perfect fit, numerous pockets and can be worn without padded shorts underneath even off the bike.

Ideally, you should also wear at least two layers on your upper body, even when riding in warm temperatures. “Functionally speaking, technical base layers, which sit directly on the skin, are your best option. The GORE® M Base Layer shirts, for example, are made of polypropylene and wick the moisture away from the skin while ensuring a pleasant microclimate” explains Jürgen. A loosely-cut jersey rounds off your basic outfit, with ¾ length or long sleeves providing a particularly stylish look.

GORE® Wear C5 All Mountain 3/4 Jersey

About GORE® Wear

GORE® Wear is one of the leading manufacturers in the cycling-clothing industry. The brand came to fame because of its GORE-TEX® jackets but also offers an extensive range of bike-specific garments, including bib shorts, jerseys, lined jackets, shorts and accessories such as gloves, overshoes and helmet covers. Recent innovations include the GORE-TEX® Shakedry jacket and the new GORE® C7 bib short range with its unique “central torso architecture”. All products and innovations have one thing in common – they’re the result of scientifically-founded knowledge and deliver outstanding performance in any weather.

Contact points

To complete your outfit it’s important to pay attention to the details such as the contact points with your bike. We always use full finger gloves, even when riding in warm weather. They provide a more secure grip on the bars and brakes and protect your fingers and hands in the event of a crash. Modern gloves like the GORE® C5 Trail even allow you to operate a smartphone.

GORE® C5 Trail Gloves

Socks are perhaps the most neglected piece of clothing in a cyclist’s wardrobe, yet a technical sock is way more comfortable than its traditional cotton counterpart. If you’re already wearing a striking kit, you could try matching it with more discretely coloured, calf-length socks to avoid any clashes.

GORE® M calf-length socks

Standing up to the elements

Let’s be honest, most of us prefer to ride our eMTBs in good weather and pleasant temperatures. But even in the hottest of summers you still get the odd cold rainy day and only the right technical clothing ensures that you can have fun whatever the conditions.

“In our experience, ebikes make us ride further, higher and for longer. This also increases the probability of running into bad weather, when compared to your average after-work lap” Jürgen says. “This is exactly where modern GORE-TEX® or GORE® WINDSTOPPER® garments can help you reach your destination safely and comfortably.”

Functional GORE-TEX® and GORE® WINDSTOPPER® fabrics have become synonyms for their respective product ranges. But what distinguishes these two popular textiles? Whilst both technologies are available in a number of different variations, there is one fundamental difference between them: GORE-TEX® products are windproof and waterproof and GORE® WINDSTOPPER® products are windproof and water repellent.

GORE® C5 GORE-TEX Active Trail Hooded Jacket

A jacket like the GORE® C3 WINDSTOPPER® is therefore recommended as the all-rounder for most situations, specifically designed to protect you from the cold air on fast descents. GORE-TEX® jackets, on the other hand, are the ideal choice for bad-weather riding and long tours because, while windproofs are usually conceived to withstand small amounts of rain, only waterproof jackets will fully protect you against the elements.

Jürgen: “Modern GORE-TEX® or GORE® WINDSTOPPER® jackets are extremely light, pack down really small and offer excellent breathability. In combination with the right technical underlayers, they’ll help you create a pleasant body climate.”

All of the above also applies to your legs. GORE® WINDSTOPPER® shorts or trousers are a great choice in cool temperatures, both in autumn and spring. When it gets really muddy or rainy, however, we recommend a model with a GORE-TEX® membrane. “Personally, I prefer to use shorts like the GORE® C5 GORE-TEX® Active Trail Shorts on most occasions. They offer the best freedom of movement and rarely get too hot due to their outstanding breathability. However, with heavy, incessant rain and cold temperatures, there’s no way around full-length rain trousers” explains Jürgen.

GORE® C5 GORE-TEX Active Trail Shorts

Every set of decent bad-weather kit needs a pair of matching gloves. Here too, you’ll find a variety of models which incorporate GORE® WINDSTOPPER® and GORE-TEX® technologies and a number of different linings. When trying on a pair of gloves, make sure you can still move your hand comfortably and with enough dexterity to shift gears and use your brakes effectively. Our mantra: as warm as necessary, as thin as possible.

Dress to impress

No matter how functional your outfit, wrong colour combinations can quickly spoil the look. If you don’t want to stick out like a sore thumb, try to follow these few simple rules. Black or grey shorts make for a neutral starting point that can be easily combined with brightly-coloured jerseys, socks and gloves. Style icons never wear more than two different colours and pay attention to complementary colours and matching colour families.

Article supported by GORE® Wear

This article is from E-MOUNTAINBIKE issue #018

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