When it comes to athletic shorts, a lot of people head down to the Sport Chalet and pick up the most basic pair of basketball shorts money can buy, thinking they will perform adequately in running, fighting, lifting, and other training. We’re talking the same generic black mesh shorts you wore in your youth basketball league when you were 13 years old.
You can do better.
One of the fastest-selling brands on GovX is Clinch Gear, maker of performance, compression, and fight wear for the modern athlete. Their flagship short is the Pro Series, a sueded microfiber fight short with flex panels in the sides and the inseam available in a variety of colorways and branch-specific styles depending on which drumbeat you march to. If you’re looking for even greater range of motion, step it up with their Signature series, made of an even softer, more flexible poly/spandex blend. Clinch Gear was kind enough to send me a pair of each, and though I’m not much of an ass-kicker, I made it my mission to kick my own ass with a tough workout and a distance run.
Fit information: I’m 5’9” and I weigh about 150 pounds with a 31-inch waistline. According to Clinch Gear’s size charts, if you’re a 31, go with a size 30.
The Signature Series
I immediately noticed how lightweight they were. This probably goes without saying, but uh, you’re not supposed to wear anything underneath these. That would defeat the whole purpose of freedom of movement and freedom … elsewhere.
Anyways, enough of that.
The Velcro hook and loop is a nice feature. I’ve used drawstring shorts before, and though they’re a fine quality, I’ve noticed a little loosening even with the very best. The Velcro Hook and Loop never once moved during my entire workout, and the shorts stayed secure on my waist through every movement.
During my one-mile warmup run, I experienced no chafing or discomfort of any kind. The shorts moved along with my stride famously. With your basic basketball shorts, you’ve got this weird heavy fabric swaying around with you. If you’re locked in on your stride, this can be distracting. Definitely wasn’t the case with Clinch Gear’s shorts.
Now for the weights. Ugh, man, does it have to be leg day? Well, this is a review for a pair of shorts, so it’s time to get to work, dammit. I started out with some squats and instantly noticed the difference between these and other shorts. The flex panels on the side and inseam were helpful in completing sets without any adjustments. They didn’t bunch up, they didn’t ride, and they just moved with me throughout all five sets. I got on the leg press machine and had similar results, even though gravity was responsible for them sliding down my legs a little. Nothing I can do there.
The Pro Series
The Pro Series offered all the benefits of the Signature series, with an added split seam right at the knee, which would come in handy if you’re a fighter throwing knee and kicks. The fabric is a sueded microfiber, which is a little less soft in texture than the Signature Series, but still flexible, movable and supremely comfortable. The flex panels on the side and the inseam gave me as much range of motion as the Signature.
The Pro Series is Clinch Gear’s flagship short, and you’ll totally love wearing them. I personally preferred the Signature series, but the bonus flexibility and softness will cost you a little extra.
As I said before, I’m not a fighter, but I can imagine these shorts performing famously in a situation which requires dodging, kicking, striking and grappling. I’d like to invite anyone of our customers who’ve done fight training with ClinchGear to comment below and let us know how they perform!
All in all, you can’t go wrong with either short. To conclude this, I’ll say that I’ve now got a couple of new favorite workout shorts. Clinch Gear makes great products, and I can see myself putting these through the motions for several years. They’re both reliable and well-performing fitness garments that’ll keep you out of the Sport Chalet bargain bin for good.