ROAR by Stacy Sims
Many books and articles about cycling are written with a standard approach to both genders. Although there is much training advice that can apply to a wide audience, it also means that female-specific issues are frequently neglected. The premise of ROAR is that women are not small men – and therefore should not necessarily train or eat like them. Women have different bodies, hormones, and much more. Sims thus argues that women should work with their female physiology to optimize fuelling, strength, and overall performance. This is a great gift for any woman athlete looking to improve her skills and feel good doing it. The language is accessible, and although much of the advice is practical, many of the conclusions she draws are quite revelatory.
VeloVixen padded cycling knickers
These are a fantastic gift for women who like to ride comfortably in “normal” clothes. Despite the increasing availability of clothes that can easily make the transition from bike to office, it can still be tricky to try to hide a pair of shorts underneath, or deal with the situation of wearing standard underwear and finding the saddle a bit, well, firm. These padded undergarments are just the thing she needs, they provide welcome padding without the bulk of shorts. They’re available in neutral designs or funky ones, so you can get a pair for all your riding pals.
FINDRA Marino headbands
FINDRA is an outdoor clothing brand, founded by a highly motivated woman who is keen to provide high-quality outdoor wear that doesn’t just come in shades of pink. Informed by a commitment to sustainability and a strong desire to encourage more people to get outdoors, anything from their line makes a great gift idea for a woman who loves to spend time out on her bike and likes knowing that the products she wears and uses were made ethically. Our recommendation for a great stocking stuffer? These stylish, lightweight headbands made from merino wool.
It might not be the most romantic of gifts, but it’s one that any dedicated cyclist will be sure to appreciate. It’s also good to know that although there are a lot of things in the cycling industry that are branded as “women’s-specific” primarily due to marketing, chamois cream isn’t one of them. Of course, there are women that use traditional chamois cream with no problems, but for many – the ingredients in traditional chamois cream are problematic. Many chamois creams use menthol which women often find uncomfortable. What’s more, most women’s chamois creams have been formulated to have a lower pH that helps prevent vaginal irritation and infection. Assos women’s chamois cream is a good option with a lower pH, that’s non-oily and not too perfumy.
Mini tool kit
A great option for any cyclist who is still learning the ins and outs of bike maintenance, a mini tool kit makes a thoughtful and useful gift. Whether she needs to repair her bike when on the go, or just tune it up in between rides, it’s always good to have the tools at the ready. Evan’s Cycles has a nice variety of kits and multi tools to provide the essentials for an on-the-go fix that will make any cyclist feel safer and more confident while they ride.
Yeti enduro gloves
These lightweight, super durable gloves are a testament to how far women’s mountain bike designs have come. Up for adventures of all kinds, these gloves are also light, airy, and would totally be suitable for roadies too. A ventilated faux-leather palm has a spider web of silicone for grip, and silicone also makes them touchscreen-friendly.
Women’s-specific sports drinks
We all know that what you eat and drink can have a major impact on your performance and due to physiological differences, not all sports drinks are as well suited to women. Most sports medicine research is done on 18- to 22-year-old men, and therefore the fact that women’s hormonal fluctuations alter their physiological responses to exercise, metabolism, recovery, and training is often ignored. So get her something that have been formulated with her in mind. This powder from OSMO was developed using research conducted on women and is intended to account for the different way they burn carbohydrates and their varying replacement needs.