Most people choose not to pay too much attention to this little detail that can make all the difference in the world. Using a balaclava while cycling makes this activity much more comfortable in winter, not to mention safer. It is believed to be an old wives’ tale that most of the body’s heat is lost through the head, true or not, cold is never comfortable. No doubt that keeping warm is key to enjoying cycling in cold temperatures. Every cyclist should own a good windproof balaclava in order to make his or her life way more comfortable.
Here is a list of key issues every cyclist needs to take into account when choosing a cycling balaclava
1 Design and neck length
A cycling balaclava should keep your neck warm. Most of the balaclavas out there are far too short and do not fully cover the neck. If there is cold wind getting to your neck then most definitely this will send chills through your whole body and you will get cold. Make sure the cycling balaclava you choose is long enough to tuck into your winter jacket. This way you will not have to choose any additional scarfs that can be incredibly uncomfortable especially when you need to move freely.
Many people wonder if they can breath through the material of the balaclava. In many cases the same mask that works for a snowboarder or motor cyclist might not be as good for a cyclist. Depending on the manufacturers this issue is approach in different ways. Some cut holes in the design or add additional thinner panels that allow a better air flow. While the methods are effective in enabling you to breathe, it will be less affective in keeping you warm. Make sure you choose a breath through material and an allergy free soft fabric that won’t cause any unwanted rash.
A wide variety of textiles are used to make balaclavas and this is where price often becomes a factor. There is almost an unlimited number of cheap balaclavas available out there but remember that quality makes the difference not the price. Choose a balaclava made with superior quality fabrics. This will keep your skin warm and dry and will protect your face in harsh weather conditions. A polyester fleece balaclava reinforced with lycra fiber will generate heat and will protect your skin against dust, snow or any other damaging elements.
Invest in a balaclava with temperature control technology so you may use it in warm weather as well.
Smaller holes cut in a balaclava means that this will keep you warmer. but what about visibility? A limited range of vision can be very dangerous. It is very important to choose the right balaclava mask depending on the bicycle you ride and on your own personal riding stile. For safety reasons do not choose a balaclava with small eyes holes.