Nopinz Subzero Bib-Shorts, keep your cool on the turbo

Nopinz Subzero Bib-Shorts, keep your cool on the turbo

The Nopinz Subzero Bib Shorts, making indoor training a little more bearable

A pair of bib-shorts just for the turbo? Surely any old pair will do? I must admit that I tend to use shorts that are passed their use by date. You know, the one that have gone a little to see-through where they shouldn’t be? Or that pair with the loose pad or the scratchy label. But why? Why when indoor training is hellish enough would you make it worse with uncomfortable kit?

Well fortunately you don’t have to thanks to the Nopinz Subzero Bib Shorts. Nopinz are the masters of aero-clothing. Starting back in 2012, founder Blake Pond came up with the speed wallet, a clear pocket you attached to your skinsuit. The idea grew and developed fast, including a Tour de France debut in 2015. From there he went on to make full aero-suits, shoe-covers, socks, jackets and bib-shorts.

The Nopinz Subzero short come in different styles, including a e-sport friendly version
The Nopinz Subzero short come in different styles, including a e-sport friendly version

Fast forward and Nopinz have turned their eyes on the turbo. A favourite tool of their original customers, time-triallists. Hours are spent indoors, suffering and sweating, a painful and lonely pursuit. While they can’t do anything about the loneliness, the Subzero Bib Shorts can help with the suffering and sweating!

The Nopinz Subzero Bib Shorts are optimised to help keep you cool during indoor sessions. As anyone who rides a turbo will know it’s a sweaty business. Most of us will have a small fan that will valiantly try to keep us cool, but it can’t compare with riding out doors. On the turbo I ride with just a pair of shorts, even in the winter in my garage, it’s just too hot.

What are they like?

The Subzero Bib Shorts look like like a normal pair of bibs apart from the hundreds of holes cut out of the fabric. These are strategically located, so you can wear them without frightening the family! They do make the shorts look incredibly fragile and I was very nervous when first pulling them on. But I needn’t have worried, I’ve been using them two to four times a week for over a year and they are still un-damaged. The laser cut legs have a thin grippy strip that keeps them in place, with no slipping.

The sides of the Subzero shorts are made from a perforated fabric

On the bike they are incredibly comfortable. During the first lockdown I was putting in a lot of hours on the turbo. So much so that I picked up some nasty saddle sores. However once the Subzero Bib Shorts turned up that all changed. Even on a couple of 100k – yes, I know – rides they were excellent. No chafing or rubbing. The pad is slightly thicker than what you’d find in a regular pair of shorts, which is perfect for indoor riding, where you tend to sit in one position longer than when riding outside.

Do the holes work?

The other question is do the holes work? Well, compared with a normal pair of shorts – which come away soaked after a session – these are noticeably drier. The solid front gets as sweaty as a normal pair of shorts though. To help deal with heat Nopinz have included some extra pockets on the shorts for their Freeze Pockets.

The Subzero shorts have a turbo friendly pad that is super comfortable

Freeze pockets

The “icing” on the cake are the tactically located Freeze Pockets. These are located between the shoulder blades and on the lower back. The idea is to reduce core temperature, allowing you to perform at your best for longer. The cooling packs (purchased separately) are interchangeable and can be easily swapped during your session to maintain the cooling advantage. You get two sets and they come in an insulated bag to keep them cool until you need them. During long sweaty sessions they do provide some relief. There are also two wrist bands that will take cooling packs, or a frozen gel! Gel slushy anyone?

The freeze pockets come in an insulated bag and with a motivational towel!

Nopinz Bib Shorts come in both male and female versions. They also do a speed-suit version, this has a full covered upper body. These are specifically designed for e-racing where live streaming requires a top to be worn. They also come in men’s and women’s fit.

In my opinion these shorts are a game changer and ass-saver! Well made and reasonably priced, if you’re spending a lot of time on the turbo, I recommend them. And if you’re looking for something at the other end of the temperature scale, take a look at my review of their cyclo-cross warm-up leggings.

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