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Climbing Pants - Reviews & Guides For 2020

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Climbing Pants Buyers Guide

Climbing is one of the most physically taxing activities, but it’s fun too! You may have proper shoes, helmet, or other gear, but there's one thing you might be missing, and that's climbing pants. These are a brilliant invention that can tweak up your performance and bring you to ease for climbing!

But wait up! Did you know that there are so many factors to consider? Like versatility, comfort, flexibility, elasticity, and much more? Yeah, it can get daunting. You can't just pick any brand you get your hands on. So, what do you do?

It's simple! Read ahead to learn everything you might have to consider before making a buying decision. More importantly, this guide will help you decide whether climbing pants are for you or not! We are also bringing you some answers to questions that might pop in your head.

So let's start by shedding some light on:

What are climbing pants, how are they useful?

Almost every article of clothing in this world has some form of 'performance-oriented' version. You can use some of them for a specific task, for instance, a fleece jacket or a hiking shirt. Similarly, you have climbing pants. As the name suggests, these pants help make any climbing activity better.

Climbing pants offer a better fit and utmost comfort and almost feel seamless to carry out your climbing activity. Many climbing pants come with extra features to help you with the task. Often, it is easier to use climbing pants with your harness and other tools for better performance. Alternatively, climbing pants is also a great addition to your gym or sports wardrobe for their heavy-duty performance.

Reasons to buy climbing pants.

Woah! There are pants specifically for climbing? That's right! Not just that, but these pants can be multi-purpose for you to wear regularly or to the gym for a great workout! Imagine wearing pajamas for climbing. Now, those are very comfortable, right?

Now combine the comfort of pajamas with a denim-like material. Yes, you're getting there. Now, add breathability, proper strength, and countless efficient features to ensure that you don't tire out. That's how you get climbing pants.

Now, you might already be tempted to buy them, but let's explore a little more. Take a look at some of the reasons to buy a pair of climbing pants.

Not restrictive

Imagine wearing jeans or standard trousers that you have. These do not provide you a range of motion and may restrict you from spreading your legs or bending them properly. As a result, you may compromise the freedom to move freely, which is integral when climbing. Climbing pants offer you complete freedom of lower body movement.

They offer several compelling features and tweaks in design to ensure that even your most restrictive parts like hips, center of gravity, and knees, don't get any form of restriction. Force is absent against your bodily movements. Thus, you can move better.

Comfortable to wear

Climbing pants are highly comfortable to wear. They have breathable fabrics and climate-specific properties. Thus, you will find insulated pants or highly-breathable wicking properties. Temperature regulation is easy, and the fabric blends are offered to feel 'seamless.'

Many people don't feel like they are wearing pants at all, which is an excellent choice for those who don't like wearing pants and prefer shorts.

Flexible choice

As mentioned above, climbing pants are not restrictive at all. Apart from comfortable fitting, they are highly stretchable to provide you the flexibility to get the work done. More importantly, you will find them bend according to your movements, regardless of how unconventional it can get.

On the other side of flexibility, you can use them for almost anything. From sports and gyms to climbing, even regular wear is possible with climbing pants that make them a valuable addition to your wardrobe.

Very resilient

Climbing pants are very durable and able to withstand almost any form of wear and tear. Most of them have the durability to resist scratches, falls, and skids in the wild, from the rocks, stones, or trails. They don't get worn out by your movements, twists, and turns. You can pull the fabric, and it won't easily rip apart either.

The stitching is also commendable to prevent any accidental rip. More importantly, you can wash them and handle them ruggedly, and they will manage to remain in prime condition. Hence, climbing pants can be great for people who tend to be careless with their regular wear clothes.

Good for protection

Climbing is a dangerous sport as it is. However, pointy edges, thorns, insects, and crawlers can make it worse for you. Sunrays with their UV qualities can further damage you, and then there's the weather. However, you can solve all of these problems by using climbing pants.

That's right! Climbing pants specifically protect against all of these raw nature's elements. Some even have antimicrobial properties to dampen germ build-up. Most of the time, these pants have thicker material to prevent you from getting unwanted cuts and scratches. UV protection seems to be a common addition to their properties.

Some pants have extra protection or pads for knees and other delicate parts to prevent you from getting hurt. Hence, these are great for protection.

Adjustable features

Many climbing pants come with a lot of features to adjust them. From threads or strings in the ankles to waist, you can fit them according to your requirements. More importantly, they tend to have additional features to support your climbing harness, ropes, tools, and much more. All of these make climbing pants a must-have for any climbing lover.

Factors to consider when buying climbing pants

Type of climbing pants

Are you someone who loves loose fits for better air circulation and breathability? Maybe you like the tight grasp of the pants more. Either way, you don't have to worry; climbing pants are available in both of these options. Make sure you understand the pros and cons of both of these types.

Baggy

These are great for your maneuver without any restriction at all. However, these pants are more prone to getting stuck into things due to their baggy design. The fabric makes it hard for things to grasp them, but it is still possible. Furthermore, it can make you look bulky or heavier than you are.

More importantly, baggy pants are more suitable for natural climbing, such as climbing over the hill, rock climbing, and other similar activities.

Athletic

These pants firmly grasp your legs for a seamless fit. If you partake in rock climbing in the gym or want something for athletic climbing exercises, these are better. They will enhance your performance and often the speed. While the fabric does manage to remain stretchy and flexible, it can feel a little restrictive.

Athletic climbing pants are not just for climbing, but to help with other endeavors. Significantly, athletic climbing pants would be better for female climbers or those who love yoga pants type of fitting.

The right size

Fitting is everything in climbing pants. You can compromise other features or factors, but fitting should be intact. Often, taller people find it harder to find climbing pants for them. You might have to look more extensively, but don't settle for anything with a size that doesn't fit you.

Fitting

The fitting shouldn't be too tight or too loose. You can get baggy pants, but it should fit your waist correctly. That's the best part of climbing pants. Their fitting is impeccable. Most of them have a grip that won't move the pants uncomfortably around your lower body. Thus, you won't have to adjust them consistently to remain comfortable.

Stretch

Climbing pants are highly elastic. However, you still need to check for the stretch. The best way for you to do so is by taking them for a spin. That's right! Give them a try and see if they are best suited for you. While you can't go rock climbing or use them in the gym without paying, you can do some stretching exercises to see if the pants offer apt strength.

Now, remember, it's never a bad idea to have strength way more than your limit. After all, the pants will get back to their original fitting and shape. But it would be best if you didn't compromise fitting for stretching at all.

Articulation

This is where things get interesting for climbing pants because they come with articulation. For your knees, groin, and ankles, you have proper articulations. Make sure that the pants you select are not restrictive on the knees.

It could make knees a weaker part of the pants, but extra padding options keep them intact. For additional durability and comfort, climbing pants have a gusset that makes them easy to fit correctly.

Blend of fabric

Climbing pants are available in a wide range of fabric blends, making it a versatile choice for year-round performance. Cotton and nylon remain the primary fabric that is readily available for climbing pants. However, the quality and type of material will inevitably make a big difference.

For instance, cotton is highly comfortable in the scorching heat, but it may get drenched in sweat and turn heavier in a humid climate. Nylon tends to be the most-balanced type available in the market. However, while considering fabrics, take these factors into account:

Breathability

You don't want a fabric that ends up building up the heat too much for you. It could end up causing too much sweat. Breathability isn't just about maintaining temperature. It is also about proper airflow to ensure that you don't get uncomfortable. If your pants have a wicking quality, then breathing becomes paramount. Furthermore, the ease of fitting would provide proper stretching without any restriction.

Durability

It is vital to have a durable material. You can test its quality by merely scratching through your nails. If it starts wearing out, then the durability isn't good at all. You can try to pull your pants apart by using force. Often, stretching quality goes in hand with the durability to ensure longevity for your pants.

Weatherproofing

There are two types of proofing, weatherproofing and waterproofing. Both of them are more or less the same. However, weatherproofing may also include protection against sunlight, dust, and debris. Often, windproofing also falls in weatherproofing for climbing pants. Either way, you can look for weatherproof pants for year-round uses.

Waterproof climbing pants remain another critical consideration for buyers to make.

UV Protection

The UV protection quality of climbing pants can reduce the need to apply sun lotion, mostly if you're hanging on by a cliff. Not only will it protect your legs, but itself as well. UV protection quality of climbing pants entails that these are great against the sun in general and don't wear out from excessive heat and sunlight.

This is a good quality to look at in fabrics, especially if you use sunlight often to dry out your clothes.

Antimicrobial

You can drastically reduce the requirement to consistently wash and maintain your pants if they have antimicrobial properties. More importantly, odor from sweat can be very unpleasant, and antimicrobial climbing pants tend to have anti-odor properties as a perk.

If you're a neat freak who doesn't like bacterias and germs, antimicrobial property is a must. It will help you maintain better hygiene.

Insulation

This is an essential quality if you are planning on climbing icy cold mountains. Insulation can keep you warm and prevent too much heat from leaking. Remember, insulation doesn't mean that the pants will provide you warmth. The insulation contains your body heat and provides warmth in that manner, which is an excellent choice for climbing pants.

Wicking

The wicking enables your clothes to efficiently drain the liquid, mostly sweat, from the surface of your body and release it. It means that your sweat will flow away from the clothes instead of sticking around for humidity.

A wicking quality is excellent if you sweat excessively or plan on climbing in a tropical climate. It helps dry your pants faster and maintain optimum body temperature without soaking you in sweat.

Extra features

The size and fabric are crucial considerations to make. However, what makes climbing pants so great are the additional features they are compatible with. Any climbing pants would have one or more of these features to make it convenient for the wearer. Let's look at some of the most beneficial features:

Loops

Climbing pants don't require you to wear belts, so these loops are more for your harness. More importantly, they can hang tools and other requirements. If you're carrying a backpack, then you can reinforce it by attaching it to the loop. Alternatively, loops are great to hang bottles and other essentials as you climb.

Climbing pants have strong loops that don't easily break or tear down. Therefore, you don't have to worry about the probability of losing anything. If you decide to use loops for harness or buckles, you will find it an 'added' safety precaution.

Cuff securing

Cuff securing is primarily for ankles, where you may either find snap-off buttons, zips, or a harness. Its use is to make sure that your pants don't fall below your ankle length. If you want to fold them up to knees to give a short-like appeal, you can get that done as well.

However, cuff-securing can make a significant impact on air circulation. It also prevents your ankles from getting stuck into anything while making a move. Not all climbing shoes are 'boot' designed to help you attach the pants' ankle inside. This is a valuable addition and could eliminate any chance of accidents from getting stuck while making a climbing move.

Brush pocket

Loops can be used to carry your chalk bag, as well. However, you might require additional pockets that aren't too bulging to hold your brush. Now, if you're a professional climber, you'd know that this brush is to dust off any additional chalk. Often, climbers use it to brush any debris from the surface that would put their hands on, among other things.

However, a brush pocket can have multiple uses. To cut it short, brush pockets are a good addition you could look for in climbing pants.

Knee protection

As we've mentioned above, that articulation can lead to lesser protection for knees. This is where knee pads can play a significant role. If you like to have safety gear but don't want to have those restrictive knee pads as additional weight, you can get integrated knee pads for your climbing plants.

It eliminates the need for you to carry them, nor will they come off from knees. Most of the time, knee pads can provide better protection. If you want, you can use the knees to strike the surface and create a new grip. Knee protection can be an invaluable addition.

Understand your requirement

Before you begin browsing through the shops or online stores to get your climbing pants, understand your requirement. What is the purpose of climbing pants? How often would you use it? Are these specifically for climbing, or do you plan on using it for regular wear, maybe gym as well?

For gym and athletic climbing

If you aim to get gym climbing pants, you need pants that are breathable with comfortable strength with mild to heavy-duty performance. You don't necessarily need weatherproofing and other things that people generally look for.

According to climate

If you decide to climb around the alpines, you need a standard climbing pant at the least. For a colder climate, you'd need one with better insulation. Most of the time, materials like cotton and nylon blend would suffice for most of these requirements. However, if you want something more 'premium,' there are options for that.

Waterproofing, weatherproofing, and other things become essential for outdoor wearing.

Design and appearance

Does appearance matter for climbing pants? To be honest, it doesn't. However, you might still want it to be in your favorite color. Don't you worry! There are climbing pants that come with all sorts of designs and patterns. Even khaki or camouflage prints are available in the market for you to choose from. While innovation and aesthetics are not the primary consideration, if you plan to use them everything, you might want to do it in style.

Remember that climbing pants are similar to 'pants made for professional use' like the ones you see construction workers wearing. Therefore, they will give you that heavy-duty look to stand out. If you are one of those, who like these looks, climbing pants for regular wear could be your bread and butter.

FAQs: Best Climbing Pants

Q: Are climbing pants necessary?

A: Climbing pants are not necessary, and there isn't any hard-imposed rule about them, either. You might need a harness, shoes, and other gear more than a pair of climbing pants. However, it can drastically improve your performance and make it easier for you to climb. People often overlook the small benefits that climbing pants deliver to make a big difference.

Q: Is jeans a better alternative to climbing pants?

A: Jeans can deliver high-durability and resilience, especially to damage wear and tear. There are indeed jeans that have elastic properties. However, jeans lack breathability, and they are heavier than climbing pants.

Most jeans don't have an ankle cuff feature to prevent it from getting stuck, either. Without proper articulation, it is way too restrictive. In short, if you don't have a budget for climbing pants, then you may consider jeans as the second-best option. However, in comparison to climbing pants, there's no way for them to be better.

Q: Is there climbing pants alternative for ladies?

A: You can try jeans. If that's not your style, then leggings are the most cost-effective alternative to climbing pants. Yoga pants may work, as well. While they are not as durable, they have proper strength and elasticity with firm fitting to substitute for climbing pants.

Conclusion

Climbing pants or trousers can be very stylish if you look around for the designs. They are available for different types of people, whether you prefer tight fits or baggy appeal. However, it is essential to remember that these pants are better for climbing purposes than everyday wear. It doesn't mean that you can't wear them daily.

Fitting should be your first consideration, then the flexibility and breathability. Everything else comes after these three qualities. We hope that this guide gives you more comprehensive knowledge regarding climbing pants. We aim to make the selection process more comfortable with our guide and advice.

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