One of the great benefits to arm warmers and knee warmers is the ability to shed them once the temperature gets a little warmer, usually an hour or two into a longer ride.
For some folks, however, knee warmers can be a hassle when they don't maintain a snug fit over their thighs. Whether it's because the knee warmer fabric gets too stretched or it just doesn't mesh well with the shorts' fabric, it's one of those petty annoyances you'd rather do without.
And then there's the element of constant cold weather or shorter rides. If you know you want your knees covered for the entire ride, but don't really need or want a full-length tight, why use knee warmers? Did you know there's another option?
Yes folks, welcome to the world of knickers. Best way to think of knickers is basically a cycling short that's designed to extend past your knees or, better stated, shorts with built-in knee warmers that extend to mid-calf.
Since I commute most every morning in temperatures between 40 and 50 degrees Fahrenheit, knickers are an ideal option. Even going home in the evenings, after the sun sets, it's nice to throw on a set of comfy knickers.
I recently tried a pair of Voler Tech Knickers, which features a dual-component fabric with a hydrophobic fiber inside and an absorbent hydrophilic fiber outside. They call this high-tech fabric "Dryline" and its purpose is to wick moisture outside the garment to keep you warm and dry.
Voler's Tech Knicker also features an 8-panel anatomical fit and a Cantara antibacterial pad with outstanding wicking and drying capabilities. The mid-calf-length cut keeps knees warm.
The best thing I like about the knickers is how quickly I can get my shorts on and off without the hassle of adding knee warmers or tights. The mid-calf length keeps just enough of my legs very warm, while a rolled elastic waist and woven gripper at the hem keeps the knickers snug against my waist.
For more info or details on where to find Voler Tech Knickers, please visit Voler Knickers. Suggested retail is $69 and they only come in black.
For those wanting the flexibility of shedding extra clothing during longer rides, Voler also manufactures excellent arm, knee and leg warmers made of light (8-9 ounces) Dryline Thermal Nylon Lycra. I've worn all sets over the past couple of winter months and found all to be surprisingly comfortable and warm considering the lightweight and breathable fabric. Details on these items can be found at Voler warmers.