As winter nears, the weather turns cold and running can become quite difficult. What is an athlete to do?
It’s not a good idea to run with bare or unprotected legs during the cold months, which is why regular runners and athletes need to invest in cold weather running tights.
Below we breakdown the five best cold weather running tights that are certain to keep you warm, cozy, and dry.
We also share what to look for when purchasing a pair and which are better in certain temps.
The 5 Best Cold Weather Running Tights
The Best Overall Cold Weather Running Tights
Compressive fit with four way stretch fabric provides full motion. 90% Polyester/10% Spandex. Leg zippers for easy off and on; Reflective elements for visibility in low light.
What Are Running Tights?
Running tights are a specific form of legging designed for runners. There are a few different types, including cold and compression.
Compression tights keep the muscles close to the body and prevent unnecessary movement while keeping the blood moving.
These are frequently used by runners who desire to improve their circulation, and they are even used in the medical field.
Forbes provides a brief overview of some of their benefits, including restrained muscles and the aforementioned circulation.
Cold tights are specific leggings designed to insulate and keep the legs warm. These can be lined with fleece, made out of special materials, or thicker than average.The main idea is to preserve core body temperature without overheating, which can be dangerous.
Why Are Running Tights Important?
Running tights, especially cold running tights, help regulate body temperature by allowing cold out and keeping the heat locked in.
They can also compress the legs to improve circulation, although this isn’t their main function.
Many athletes wear cold-weather tights to stave off illness or potentially deadly conditions like hypothermia.
According to the Mayo Clinic, hypothermia is a dangerous condition when the body loses heat much faster than it can generate it.
This causes numerous deaths each year, especially because people aren’t always the best about protecting themselves from the cold.
For runners, it poses a unique danger since individuals can struggle to recognize when they are getting dangerously cold – after all, they are still burning energy and will feel warm or hot from the activity.
Therefore, it’s important to be safe by wearing the proper equipment and take the right steps to protect the body.This video gives a little more information about what runners should do as well as showing a physical example of cold weather running tights:
How Cold Can It Be?
This is an important question for athletes and one that heavily influences exercise decisions and what to buy.
In general, individuals should avoid running outdoors in temperatures below twenty degrees Fahrenheit as the situation can become dangerous quickly.
In particular, there is once more risk for hypothermia.
Is someone chooses to run anyways, they should not only rely on cold weather tights. Instead, the tights should be a base layer over which another pair of pants should be laid.
While this will affect running times, it will keep the individual warm enough to exercise properly and prevent the hazardous loss of heat.All of the leggings listed here should not be worn solo in any environment below thirty degrees Fahrenheit.
Coming in as our number 1 pick for the second year in a row in the Baleaf thermal fleece running tights, which are made for men and women out of 90% polyester and 10% spandex. The interior is fleece for extra protection, which should keep the legs warm.The exterior includes moisture-wicking technology which pushes sweat away from the body, preventing uncomfortable moisture buildup that can cause odor, fungus, or extra cold.
- Breathable, windproof water resistant soft brushed fabric helps you stay warm and lifts moisture away from skin for drier comfort
- Compressive fit with four way stretch fabric provides full motion
- Back pocket with zipper securely store your items like 5.5" mobile phone
- Inner drawstring with elastic waist for an adjustable fit
- Leg zippers for easy off and on; Reflective elements for visibility in low light
The waistband of the leggings (or tights) is made of elastic designed to fit around most waist sizes. The legs have small zippers around the calf to improve the fit. The zipper should not pinch or be uncomfortable against the skin.
Unlike many other examples of cold weather leggings, the Baleaf variants have extra reflective elements so a wearer is visible in the dark.
A typical pair costs anywhere between $20 and $40. There is a pocket in the back with a zipper for phones to sit.In general, these are a good pair of leggings for people to use, especially if they are seeking flexibility and general comfort.
The Yogipace running tights are specifically fleece-lined to improve heat retention and provide extra comfort and warmth.
The manufacturer made this model for days between 30 and 50 degrees, meaning they shouldn’t be used in snowy environments but are still good for late fall and early December – depending on location.
- PETITE-25" inseam fits women -5'1" or 5'4" / REGULAR-28" inseam fits women 5'5"-5'8" / TALL-31" inseam fits women 5'9" - 5'11" / EXTRA TALL-34" inseam fits women 6' and above
- FLEECE CARE INSTRUCTIONS to prevent from pilling: Wash inside out/Machine wash cold/Gentle cycle/Tumble dry low/Do not wash with prone-pilling clothing especially clothing with cotton fiber/Do not iron/ Do not bleach Do not use fabric softener
- Fleece lined for superior comfort and warmth in 30-50 degree weather.✅ If you live in the windy area, dress the windproof pants and our thermal leggings as baselayer. WATER RESISTANT leggings can handle light rain for a short time. NOT WATERPROOF
- Elastic waistband with drawcord. Hidden waistband pocket
- Back zippered pocket keeps your device secure and accessible
These running tights come in men’s and women’s models and are water-resistant but not waterproof. They have an elastic waistband that can be adjusted with a drawstring for improved fit and comfort.
There is a pocket in the back with a zipper for easy storage that is large enough to fit a phone or wallet. There are also additional side pockets.
The average pair of these tights cost between $30 and $40 and should last for at least 1-2 years. They do come in petite and plus sizes.
Care instructions are included and the fit is soft and comfortable.
These cold-weather tights are ideal for individuals who live in warmer climates but still experience cooler days.
The THERMA-STAR running tight is a soft and warm option to wear out on your cold running days.
These performance men's running tights were designed to provide maximum support and push you through the extra mile, even if its extra cold outside.
THERMA-STAR Technology helps keep you warm in moderately cold temperatures ranging from 35-55 degrees Fahrenheit, which is solid for fall and some winter temperatures. It will also act well as a base layer under other articles of clothing.Generally, these tights will cost you between $15 to $30 dollars and they will last you for a good amount of time. Lifespan may vary depending on wear and tear that you put it through.
- Starter hangtag doubles as a sticker!
- These performance men's running tights were constructed with ergonomic seams to provide maximum support and push you through the extra mile
- THERMA-STAR Technology helps keep you warm
- Features foldover waistband with adjustable Starter logo drawcord
- Water resistant pocket on the back ensures your belongings stay dry
These tights also feature a waistband with an adjustable drawcord for a better fit and a water-resistant pocket on the back ensures your belongings stay dry through any conditions.
The Nike Therma Baselayer can be a staple article of clothing for any runner in the winter, as it provides a comfortable warm layer that almost feels like a second skin.
These tights feature Nike’s Pro Warm fabric that provides a locked-in feel for any athlete. This is complemented by moisture-wicking technology to keep you dry regardless of what the elements throw at you.
The body-hugging fit is secure and offers lasting support for probably a year or two. You will probably get through two or three winter seasons with these baselayer tights.
These tights will cost you anywhere between $40 to $50 depending on what size and color you desire.
To finish off the feature, there is an elastic waistband that stretches while you move for a comfortable fit as well as a ribbed back yoke to improve breathable comfort as you work up a sweat.
The Under Armour Cold Gear tights rounds out our list and are leggings designed for men, women, and children and are made from a material designed to wick away moisture and sweat.
They are not waterproof but work well at keeping the legs dry in regular weather conditions. Although they will probably keep you warmer in the rain than having no tights at all.
- Dual-layer fabric with an ultra-warm, brushed interior & a smooth, fast-drying exterior
- Material wicks sweat & dries really fast
- Welded seams eliminate chafing no matter how hard you work
- Super minimal encased elastic waist delivers a smoother, more streamlined silhouette
- UA logo on right leg shows your preference for performance
The waistband is made in elastic and the pants primarily come in straight sizes with a few plus-size options available.
They do not have pockets but work well in conditions as low as 20-30 degrees Fahrenheit.
Under Armour is one of the few manufacturers to include anti-odor technology that it claims targets bad-smelling bacteria that create scents and mold.
A typical pair of these leggings cost between $40 and $60 but are projected to last through at least a year of regular use.
They also come with some additional features, including extra protection for even colder environments.
As an added note, wearing cold weather running tights isn’t the only precaution an individual should take when choosing to exercise in the fall and winter.
Remember, nobody wants hypothermia.
Last update on 2021-04-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API