I am by now means an athlete and the benefits of compression gear is a moot one with me, however, in winter here in Perth both in terms of cycling and running I have found that compression tights work really well for me as leg warmers! Who knows I might even be getting some technical benefits as well. So this review is about my use of the Sugoi Piston 200 Race + Recovery Compression tights on my bike and running with an emphasis on keeping me warm. I brought the tights in March 2011 from Wiggle for a landed price of $76.00. I have been using them over the Perth winter since then and will continue to use them until they wear out.
Sugoi makes the usual claims about the benefits of compression and I will discussion of that to Sugoi video at the end of this review. I am more interested in the claims by Sugoi in respect to moisture transfer, breathable and reflectiveity as well as the various design features.
But first as I mentioned I use the compression tights as leg warmers as much as anything else. In winter/spring here in Perth our average minimum temperatures range from 4 C to 12 C over the six months and of course on the bike in particular there is a wind chill factor to take into consideration.
Features of the Sugoi Piston 200 Compression Tights
Articulated for increased movement: They are a tight fit, guess that is expected after all considering they are compression tights and with that comes a good fit which in turn does not restrict movement at all. So from this perspective I have no issues with the product. Given my size I went with XL based on Sugoi size chart and find that they are good fit with one exception, around the ankles. They are a pain to get on and off, i.e., over the foot. I am a European size 43 if that give you some idea, In fact this is such an issue for me that I wouldn’t buy these again as I can get just as good product from Skins without this hassle.
Flat seams: Sugoi indicate that flat seams is a feature of the tights. From my experience there are not rub points or other irritations coming from the tights when worn so another tick for this feature.
Moisture Transfer and breathability: This is a definite bonus feature with me. They do work really well in this regard even when worn under my Showers Pass Storm Pants. I also find them good in the rain on the bike; they tend to not to soak through quickly and dry quickly once the sun comes out. Another big tick for this aspect.
Pre-laced stretch drawstring with elastic waist: I am not sure of the advantage of having a drawstring. They are after all compression tights right? So if they are compression tights they should fit tight; a drawstring shouldn’t be required. I don’t use it and think if I did have to then these would be to big for me. The elastic was it is fine and hasn’t shown in signs of loosing its elasticity.
Inside key pocket: The tights have an inside key pocket, which maybe of use to someone, but not to me. I don’t bother with it and again consider it a “feature” that I would not miss.
3M Scotchlite reflective accents: The tights are not short of reflective stripes/reflective branding and well I don’t think that is a bad thing if you run or ride at night. Any reflective material has to be a bonus, no? It seems to work okay and it is a feature that gets a tick from me.
So in summary I am pretty happy with the tights and think they do a good job. They work for me with the exception of getting them over my feet/ankles. That is really annoying and frankly given the competition I cannot be bothered putting up with it and hence these are not my go to tights, my Skins are instead and I will not bother buying them again.
In closing I am sure some of you will wonder what the heck: Compression tights as leg warmers! Well if you buy them online from a UK retailer they are pretty price competitive and they have the great advantage of staying up! They sure as hell beat so called leg warmers and in the temperatures here in Perth they work good for me. Heck I might even get some muscle benefit from them.
Oh here is the promised Sugoi video. Enjoy.