Women's running shorts: 6 of the best
We put 6 of the best running shorts for women through their paces
SAUCONY IMPULSE SHORT
Another short that sat on the hips, these felt similar to the Ron Hill shorts, again having a deep waistband, although they came up slightly larger and felt looser too (we had a size medium in these and a UK12 in the Ron Hills). That was no problem though, as a continuous drawcord made adjustments easy and although we were a little concerned they might flap a bit when running, they actually stayed in place really well.
Split legs similar to the Brooks made range of movement excellent, while mesh panels around the hems and up the sides were a nice touch for breathability and the fabrics felt good quality. The inner brief didn’t seem to cover as much of the bum as others on test, but it still stayed in place well without riding up. There’s also a zippy waterproof pocket on the waistband big enough for keys/credit card. All in all, an excellent value short and only just pipped to the winning spot by the Ron Hill Aspirations, based on us preferring the slightly closer fit and the feel of the fabric.
Verdict: A well-designed pair of shorts with plenty of quality features – nice mesh detailing on the legs, too 88%
UNDER ARMOUR WOMEN’S LOOSE SHORT
Bringing back memories of Alan Partridge performing lunges in the room of his Travel Tavern, these shorts are definitely the skimpiest on test and with no inner brief lining, you’ll definitely need underwear with them! They’re also the cheapest in this round-up though – and if you’re looking for a super-lightweight, super-breathable no frills option for fast efforts or racing, or to layer up and wear on top of run tights, then these could be the ones for you.
These fit nearer the waist and that makes them appear even shorter, although a drawcord kept them in place well. On our test runs the pinhole mesh fabric made them feel barely-there (although possibly that’s because there really wasn’t very much of them). Although comfortable we did feel a touch self-conscious and we found we were revealing some bum cheek once we started running and kept having to stop to adjust them. They did win ‘highest number of beeps from passing traffic’ though, so one for the exhibitionists among you!
Verdict: Unsurpassed lightness and breathability — but those with curvier bums may find they need more coverage 70%
RON HILL ASPIRATION SHORT
Mention Ron Hill to any runner and most will mention one of either two things: the icon’s 50-year running streak, or his penchant for short shorts and vests. So it seems somehow fitting that the top honours in this test go to the brand famed for running skimpies. The Aspiration Rhythm short is one of those items of apparel that just gets it right.
They’re neither too long nor too short, there’s enough room to move without them flapping about and the inner brief is well-fitting and breathable. The fabric also has a little stretch in it, which helps give a fit that’s closer than say the Brooks or Saucony shorts in this test but without feeling in any way restrictive or figure-hugging. There’s also an internal draw cord for fit adjustments and a secure zippy pocket big enough for keys, cash and credit card. Plus it’s a personal thing, but we liked the geometric print – it looks modern without being too girlie. A decent price point, too and we’ll be running many happy miles in these come summer.
Verdict: Everything you need and at a reasonable price point.Nice one Ron — a sterling pair of running shorts! 93% BEST OF THE TEST