Casual Cycling Shorts With Padding (Shopping Guide)

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Ben Jones

Accessories, Bike Gear Reviews


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I like big butts and I cannot lie.

It was true in 1992, when Sir Mix-a-lot rapped those lyrics in his smash hit, Baby Got Back.

These days, it’s still true for me. Although, it has to be said, mainly for my own butt. Because when I’m cycling I like my butt to be as big and well-padded as I can make it.

The day I found out about padded shorts was a total revelation for me. Until that point, I had put up with a standard pair of shorts with no padding. I’d go out for a cycle and be uncomfortable after the first couple of miles. That discomfort would then develop through the bike ride. Much like a fine wine maturing after it’s been laid down in a cool cellar. With wine, as it matures, you find the young harsher flavors mellowing and new deeper, more complex flavors blossoming.

With my butt? Well all I got ‘maturing’ were the swollen purple bruises that would grow on my cheeks.

Like the dark red grapes that go into creating that fine wine. But so much less appealing and enjoyable.

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So, padding in shorts is, in my humble opinion, a damn good idea. However, I’m not really a fan of the kind of shorts that the pro cyclists wear. In tight spandex/lycra with thick padding on the butt, they’re aerodynamic and comfy….but? But, with my skinny legs and extra padding round the midriff, I just look like a total fool in them.

Quick Answer: Santic Casual Bike Shorts With Padding

Thankfully there are lots of options for shorts that have a loose-fitting casual style combined with the heaven that is chamois padding.

Let’s take a look, shall we?

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Okay, let’s take a look at each of these in a bit more detail.

Baleaf Men’s Padded Bike Underwear

First up, we have, not shorts, but underwear.

Before you skim over this, take a moment to consider. Many times I actually wear a pair of these when I go out riding, along with a pair of my standard loose shorts over the top.

That way you get the best of all worlds.

You have the padding that comes with the foam chamois on the butt, the inner thigh rub protection from the underwear fabric, and the ‘disguise my skinny legs’ benefit of the shorts. This powerful team of padded cycling underwear and whatever-shorts-I-feel-like outwear is a sure-fire winner in my book.

Baleaf Women’s Bike Underwear

These are the female equivalent of the men’s underwear above. All the same great features, but in a ladies’ fit.

If you search around you will also find women’s cycling underwear in a very short, briefs / underpants style. Whilst they have the same padding on the seat area, they don’t extend down your legs and so you won’t have protection from inner thigh rub.

Santic Men’s Cycling Shorts

This is a fantastic style of cycling shorts.

It’s got the comfy padding tucked away in the seat. On the outside, you’ve got a loose fabric design with a handy drawstring waist – to accommodate that extra slice of cake midway through your bike ride 😉

They stretch down to just about the knee – which is useful as longer shorts or trousers can cinch round the knees as you bend them to turn the pedals, causing tightness and rubbing.

Two useful zip pockets on the legs complete this great pair of casual cycling shorts.

An excellent choice.

Ally Mens Mountain Bike Short

A more structured pair of shorts than the Santic above, the Ally Mountain Bike shorts are another great choice if you’re needing something a little more formal.

These come with a whole stack of features.

The first thing I love about them is that they have a removable inner liner. This is the spandex undershorts with the seat padding.

With it you can ride in comfort. Stop, hop off the bike, whip off the undershorts, and they’re transformed into an awesome piece of lower-half apparel that’s perfect for casual entertaining.

The fabric of the outer shorts is water repellent and breathable. It has a stretch fit waist and adjustable Velcro tabs for the perfect fit. Plus a veritable feast of open and zippered pockets.

Cycorld Women’s Mountain Bike Shorts

A similar style of short to the Ally Men’s above, this pair of Cycorld mountain bike shorts is in a ladies cut. They come with a removable padded inner liner and a whole host of zippered pockets to stash all your essentials in.

Baleaf Women’s Cycling Skort

Ok, so before you accuse me of breaking the rules here: (a) this is MY website and I decide what to choose, and (b) this is a totally awesome piece of bike clothing!

One for the ladies. This is a skort not a short. Basically a skort is a cross between a skirt and a short. In this case, that means we have a skirt with built-in padded bike shorts. All in stretchy fabric with an elasticated waist.

How cool is that?!

What? You want more? Okay, how about two big side pockets on the bike shorts to accommodate your phone or music player, with a music port on the skirt to allow your headphone cable to pass through.

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Sore bum bones cycling?

I’ve read lots of articles that tell you that you just have to live with the sore butt you get every time you head out on the bike.

“Man Up!”, they say, to their male AND female readers and riders. “It’s Just ‘Beginner’s Butt’, that’s all”, they tell you as they lecture you about pushing through the pain and getting more miles under your cheeks. “That’ll Solve It!” they argue.


Whilst I’m all for the whole, ‘no pain, no gain’ thing. It has to be in small doses and, preferably, without a whole lot of pain.

Do you know what I mean?

I say, get some bike shorts in a style that suits you, with a generous amount of padding on the butt area. Then go out and actually enjoy the ride.

No Pain, Lots of Gain.

Stay comfy.