Cycling leg and arm warmers are clothing pieces worn by cyclists during long rides to protect against wind or cold weather. Leg warmers are worn together with bib shorts, and they cover from your thighs down to the ankles, while arm warmers are worn on the arms. Some of these pieces are made from lycra, wool, or polyester materials and can provide warmth during chilly weather.
Cycling leg and arm warmers are useful protective gear to use against the cold. They provide warmth and are lightweight, so you don’t have to worry about extra weight on your rides. Arm warmers are easy to remove and can be stuffed into your pockets. Leg warmers are typically worn under your shorts bib.
If you’re interested in cycling and live in a temperate or even subarctic climate, buying arm and leg warmers is an essential addition to your sports gear, and include many affordable options. Look out for a set that provides comfort and without restricting movement.
Cycling leg warmers – Over or under shorts?
Cycling leg warmers are typically worn under shorts and extend from the thigh to the ankle. As needed, you can roll up your shorts to adjust the warmers, as there will be some overlap between them.
Leg warmers often utilize silicone grippers to hold them in place on your leg. Cycling leg warmers provide secure insulation that lets you ride even in freezing temperatures.
Cycling arm warmers
Although there is no established rule stating the conditions where a cyclist should use an arm warmer, cycling coaches tend to advise that you should not go for rides without warmers if the temperature is colder than 70°F (21°C).
This is because cold joints can limit performance and lead to injury. It is no surprise that riders perform better when their bodies are warm. The cold can also lead to arthritis. Arm warmers protect your arm from the cold, and add only a negligible amount of weight to your overall load.
Recommended cycling arm and leg warmers
There are many brands you can choose from when you decide to make a purchase:
- Assos leg warmers: these warmers extend beyond the usual thigh point and stop at the hip. Assos utilizes the common lycra material in cycling shorts to hold them firmly in place.
- Castelli Nanoflex: these products have a water-repellent coating, so water can’t get to your body, although, depending on use, this feature doesn’t last forever. Castelli warmers have a wonderful feel on the body and provide secure warmth.
- Gripgrab leg warmers: these use “breathable” materials, which means that the material is light enough to allow air in while insulating for heat. Gripgrab warmers may not be suitable for extreme cold days, though there are different levels suitable for various conditions.
- Lusso Max Repel leg warmers: produced in the UK, these products utilize a fiber treatment to repel rain and keep heat in. Lusso Max products are simple and effective.
- Sportful NoRain warmers: the materials used for production are similar to that of Nanoflex – they repel water too, without retaining too much heat.