I bought a pair of mountain bike shorts. It comes with a ‘separate’ pair of inner shorts that are like Lycra and have a padded liner sewn to it. However, these inner shorts are attached to the outer shorts on the left and right. They are attached via something that looks like thin shoelaces.

I feel really silly asking this question, but I can’t figure out why these inner shorts are attached to the outer shorts this way. Is it just so that they can keep the two pieces together on the clothing rack?

I just want to cut them bc it’s not easy to put on two pairs of shorts at the same time given the way they are currently attached.

wide shot close up


1 Answer 1


The inner garment will be for replacement underwear - and will have a close fit to provide "support and control", duplicating the shorts that roadies might wear.

The outer covering will be fairly loose and baggy, and is mostly for aesthetics, to hide the inner layer, and to provide some level of abrasion resistance in case you fall and slide. Not much protection, but some.

If you cut the cords at the hem, the outer layer could ride up in the wind and show the inner layer, and MTB types generally don't admit to wearing lycra even when its for comfort not performance.

If you cut the cords at the waist as well, you'll simply separates them into two disjoint items of clothing and they should work fine separately.

For future readers, these shorts and the insert are often gender-specific too, so things might be uncomfortable if its not a suitable style for you.

Additionally, you're not supposed to wear anything inside the inner layer, so no underwear please. Just make sure the inner layer is pulled up quite "high" and the material rides close to the skin all around.

  • 1
    MTB types wear their lycra quite openly around here. At least those XC ones. May 23, 2020 at 13:12
  • 2
    @VladimirF quite a few do here (UK). Baggy shorts over lycra tights is a common look in winter
    – Chris H
    May 25, 2020 at 20:02

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