T-Shirts vs. Jerseys. It's an age-old debate that's divided the cycling community between the smug road warrior and the na?ve, out-for-a-nice-ride cruiser.
Such fights over wardrobe are nothing new. Surely even the ancient Romans held debates concerning whether one should wear armor or go shirtless in an epic battle. And much like all quarrels, the t-shirt vs. jersey debate has seen its fair share of injuries: spoiled posture and chaffed nipples, namely. Well, put your weapons away and save your insults for another time, because jerseys are supremely better than t-shirts.
Here are four reasons you should throw that heavy, cotton tee back in the dresser drawer where it belongs, and get yourself a cycling jersey.
Reason #1: Sweat1 of 5
If you bike, you sweat. If you bike and you're wearing a t-shirt, you sweat A LOT. Synthetic materials like polyester, the fabric that makes up many t-shirts (some cotton t-shirts even contain polyester), don't do something every human must to stay alive: breathe. Cycling jerseys, on the other hand, are made of moisture-wicking technical fabric. Though polyester likewise makes up the majority of cycling jerseys, the fibers are designed in a way that helps pull moisture from the skin.
Reason #2: Pockets2 of 5
Between your many myriad items like gels, bars, driver's license, insurance card (if you're not carrying your insurance card, you should be) and phone, where do you find a place to safely and securely (so much for the front pockets of your jorts) put everything you need on a bike ride? Jersey pockets.
Cycling jerseys typically have three rear pockets where you can fit most things you'll require on a long bike ride. While you can argue some t-shirts have breast pockets, let us know how that century ride's going after you finish your lone gel.
Reason #3: Jerseys Are Cool3 of 5
We mean cool as in "you look like a badass." Yes, jerseys, worn tight and zipped up as far or low as the weather dictates, make you look like a serious cyclist (aka totally awesome). Conversely, if you're wearing a tee, sweating away with pumps and spare tubes bungeed to your bike, the only second glance you'll get is for looking ridiculous.
A general rule of thumb: For envious stares, wear a jersey. For objectionable sneers, wear a t-shirt.
Reason #4: Butt Crack4 of 5
If you're wearing a jersey, you're very likely wearing cycling shorts or a bib, all of which shield the public from your unsightly derriere. Unless you're riding a cruiser or commuter bike that allows for an upright posture, your body position is bent over the handlebars; a pose that lends itself to butt crack exposure. For the viewing public, manufacturers cut cycling jerseys to be longer in the back.
Don't get arrested for indecent exposure; wear a jersey. And remember kids, crack kills.