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Performance shoes are ideal for running fast, either in racing or in speed sessions.
Running tights come in many shapes and sizes, find your ideal pair here.
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Review of sports bras for runners from the Running Bug. Real runners review the latest gear.
Go straight to the first review here.
Why do I need running tights?
Well the answer is obvious really, we need something on our legs, but first and foremost we need tights to keep our vital assets warm and protected from the elements. There are many types of tights or legging on the market. Gone are the days when you're old tracksters got you through four or five winters, these days runners will have a ¾ length pair of tights for Autumn and Spring, longer lightweight tights for milder days, long-john style tights to wear as an extra layer under shorts and fleece-lined tights for Arctic conditions.But as with all running gear, there's been some developments in technology beyond Lycra which have given the things you put on your legs extra functions. The high-tech materials used in running gear help wick away the sweat and keep your body at the right temperature, and then there's compression, said to boost circulation, ease fatigue and aid recovery.Need to knowLycra revolutionized sportswear as a whole making garments fit well, so you can move unrestricted and feel comfortable. But when you're buying running tights you'll be faced with a host of materials and technologies. Those that are used to wick away sweat - Dri-Fit from Nike, C+ Lightening Dry from New Balance, Aquamove from Zoca - and material designed to ventilate, like CLIMACOOL from Adidas.Then there's compression, which is a little more controversial, with contradictory studies and marketing claims. Compression garments are said to limit muscle movement and vibration, meaning we're less likely to get injured. Recovery is said to happen as the blood is returned from working muscles to the heart and lactic acid is flushed away from the muscles more quickly.Other things to look at when you're buying a new pair of tights are where are the pockets, zips and reflective panels. Pockets are generally unobtrusive, designed to lighten the load and hold a couple of sweets and a key, some are zipped, some on the outside at the back or the side, some internal. And some tights, notably compression, there are no pockets.Zips on the bottom of your tights can be undone so that you can remove them easily over dirty trainers. And there are often extra layers of material over the zip itself to make sure that wind and rain stays out when you're on the move. Reflective panels are strategically placed, often on the ankle zip, or behind the knee, meaning you can safely run on dark winter nights. And mesh panels combine with high tech materials to keep you cool and dry as you run.Many manufacturers are adding in features which make your tights part of an interactive package (for example mi-coach compatible Adidas tights) - in other words you have places to store your gadgets and iPhones, so you can feedback information to the online training zone.
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