Cycling Bibs and Shorts for Women


Hi everyone! Many of you have asked me about cycling shorts and bibs for women. In this video, I show my favorite and provide some general guidance. I’d love to know which bibs/shorts are your favorites and why. Please share your comments below!

#womencycling, #womencyclingshorts


@Coach_Theia I wear Terry size medium shorts and do not have a love for them. Does the Assos shorts run small? Tina


I have several pairs of Sugoi shorts I wear on the trainer for 60-90 minutes workouts that I really like. Comfortable and fairly easy to get on sale. For long rides I have a pair of SheBeest century shorts that are great but my favorites so far are Castelli aero shorts. I did a double century in them last summer and they were comfortable from start to finish.


Theia- Great review on the shorts. I have not tried Assos shorts …yet.
Last year I purchased 2 pair of Rapha Classic Bibs. So far, they have been my best shorts/bib purchase to date. The padding is large - similar to Assos- not too thick but it is in the right places. These are my go to bibs. I wear them mountain biking and road, cross, gravel riding. Not all shorts made for road riding, feel comfortable mountain biking.
They wick away the moisture from your body too. The legs are not too compressive- no sausage legs! In winter, I wear them under tights. I am one of those crazy riders who rides in all 4 seasons - outside as much as possible.

Rapha is not cheap but they have good clearance sales in fall and at Christmas. (My favorite piece of Rapha clothing is a wool blend long sleeve jersey that I wear fall, winter and spring.)

For mountain biking- I have a pair of Pactimo bibs with mountain bike shorts. What I like about these shorts is they are light mesh, but have nice compression and breathe really well. They are made to go under mountain bike shorts so you don’t feel like you are wearing double shorts.

I do a lot of long rides ranging 2 &1/2 to 6 hours. The longer the ride, the more the shorts matter.


I’ve been wanting to try Rapha… The Assos run true to size, but there is quite a bit of compression and with that an “opportunity” for sausage legs…

@Stefanie thanks for your comment! Will look into the Castelli aero.


Hi everyone,
I have really preferred Castelli shorts and have worn them for years. I’m wearing the free aero pair in my profile pic.

That being said, I did buy an Assos pair a few months back when we had a similar thread and Theia mentioned them and I really like them as well and would definitely get another pair.

Castelli just came out with the premio which the guys got last year. My husband loves them so I might try a pair down the road.

I think you can’t go wrong with either brand to be honest.


Oh, and I should also mention that my all time favourite shorts aren’t made by Castelli anymore. I loved the body paint ones and don’t like the free aero quite as much simply because they compress more around the cuff. The chamois pad is the same in all their top of the line shorts. I don’t like the kiss Donna pad in their cheaper shorts, but I haven’t tried the new version of that pad out that has been updated.


The Rapha run true to size also. They have a size chart which is accurate.
I am going to try a pair of Assos shorts or bibs when I need to start replacing the ones I have. I don’t mind the compression.


And as promised, here is the trick on how to pee in nature! I love it so much, no body parts exposed, no taking anything off, and I am now faster than the guys :joy: Note the cross/opposite arms:


I got a pair of Assos from their outlet store about 2 months ago. They now have had a good test.

I used the Assos on the trainer maybe 4 times. I did my first longer ride in the Assos on Saturday (42 miles). They are amazing! I had no problems. I love that the chamois is not completely stitched down and it has a waffle pattern. When I go back to my Terry shorts, I want to throw the Terry shorts away after riding.

I also got a pair of Rapha shorts. I was able to get navy blue on sale. They are different. The fabric is more stretchy. The chamois is different. Initial test indicates they are also better than the Terry.

Of course everyone is different, so need to find what works for you. Tina


I picked up a pair of assos shorts and Rapha shorts over the summer. I also own Rapha, and Pactimo bibs.
I would rate them

  1. assos shorts
  2. Rapha classic II bibs
  3. Rapha shorts
  4. Pactimo bibs

I really like the assos shorts. They are very comfy and are more compressive than the raphas. I like their padding for the same reasons you mention. The one thing I don’t like is their emblem being hard rubber on the left thigh and right hip/butt cheek. I tend to fall to the right when mountain biking and they will certainly leave a mark. I have not tried their bibs yet.

The Raphas really wick the sweat away from the skin as do their flyweight jerseys ( if you don’t own one, grab one on sale. It is by far the best summer jersey I own.). I like the classic bib better than their shorts. They do fit differently. I wear the bibs a few times a week and a year later, they still look and feel good. I have done many 40+ mile and 2-1/2 to 6 hour rides with minimal irritation.

My Pactimo bibs are mesh and fit under mountain bike shorts and are nice under thermal tights. The padding is made for mountain biking as you sit more upright. They do a nice job wicking away sweat too.


A new video is coming up! A recent bike fit and new saddle broadened my view/options in bib shorts…


Can’t wait to see the updated reviews. What saddle did you end up getting?


I love the bibs by Velocio that are pee friendly. Always worry about getting myself wet trying Theia’s way!


:rofl: there is definitely a risk there… I also realize that some shorts are too tight on the legs and thus can’t always be bunched up like that


I am going to have to try your voiding in nature methodology. I think I will try at home first :joy:
I love my Specialized bibs that have a quick release clip in the back. Easy to use for all ‘needs’ and fits well


might try it in the back garden for the first time in case it goes wrong :rofl:


So this weekend I was on a group ride- the only woman in a group of 20… I told them I had to go, and they asked if I wanted them to stop at a gas station. I said “nope! I just need a second behind those bushes over there, you guys can keep going a little slower and I can catch up”… So I did, it was SO fast, I got back on the bike and caught them no problem! I did have to do an “effort” on gthe bike to catch up but it was pretty quick.

PS - I just noticed that the video is down. I will do a new one, because I have new insights on bib types after I had a bike fit and a new saddle…


I have a pair of Velocio bibs, and love them, but gotta try your method Theia!
Looking forward to your thoughts on bibs and saddles.


I tried the pull to the side method standing in the shower one day just to see if it would work, and there’s NO way I can get my bib leg up and over far enough to get the job done. I have a Velocio bib that I like and I’m watching for a sale on the Rapha clip bibs but until that happens I’ll have to stick with stripping down.