The-Cycling-Kit-a-Pro-Coach-Recommends-to-Maximise-Performance Pro Cycling Outlet

If you ask a personal cycling coach what makes the most difference to improving performance, you’d expect to hear about exercise plans, diet and mindset. But you might be surprised what they have to say about cycling kit. It turns out the killer edge can also come from what you’re wearing.

Will Harper, head coach at Duchy Cycle Coaching, says “The position and outline of your torso in terms of how aerodynamic you are is more important than the bike itself.” Here are some key pieces of kit Will recommends to his clients.

Aero socks

Aero socks

Aero socks are the most valuable upgrade in terms of kit or equipment because they’re a very cheap way of saving you up to 8 watts. “That’s about 2 or 3 euros per watt, making them the best value upgrade,” says Will. 

Pro-level socks are actually more aerodynamic than skin. So much so that the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) bans socks that come beyond halfway up the calf. That 8 watts could mean the difference between ending the race in the winner’s jersey or going home in your own shirt.



Moving up the body, a skinsuit is Will’s recommendation for reducing drag and directing airflow. Typically worn for time trials and triathlons, skinsuits can save vital seconds thanks to aero fabric and strategically placed seams. Premium pro-level skinsuits are tested in wind tunnels to offer even higher performance than off-the-peg versions.

The next best thing, for road racing, especially on long races, is a race suit. It has some of the aerodynamic advantages of the skin suit as it’s all-in-one but with pockets at the back to carry food.

Aero helmets

Cycling Helmets

For cutting wind resistance, a typical vented helmet is, of course, more aerodynamic than a human head. But, for racing, Will suggests the smoother, non-vented aero helmets. Their solid shape and distinctive, low-fitting tapered shape does mean your head gets hotter. So, for very long, hot races and regular rides you might be better off with a vented helmet but an aero helmet is almost always the better choice for racing,

Training to hold an aero position for long periods of time is important, meaning pros and amateurs alike can benefit from personalised coaching. But kit upgrades will make you more aerodynamic with zero training hours 

If you want to learn more about personal coaching, check out Duchy Cycle Coaching’s website. If you want the kit to match, our Pro Cycling Outlet has what you’re looking for.

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