by Been Around the BlockfromBe Serious - no linerThe thoughtful features did not consider that these shorts were intended to be used for running.
Date published: 2011-06-23
Rated 3out of5
by BrimstonefromGreat....except the pocketsThis is my third, maybe fourth different 'OXT Trail Shorts'. None of them have been inexpensive. The fabric is outstanding; not sure if it's changed over the years but if so not much. It stretches and drapes well and is extremely comfortable. Breathes easily and dries quickly. Fabric's the best thing about them. I can't remember if they've always come unlined, but if not they became so shortly after I took possession of them. I'm happy to report this year's model didn't waste resources putting in a liner. If I feel the need for some support I'll wear wicking briefs, like the outstanding ExOfficio Give-N-Go.
The length is fine @ 9.5". I prefer a bit shorter but I can live with this. Better than the 10"-11" skirts of previous years. Also this length allows one to wear padded cycling shorts or boxers underneath while avoiding that Cyndi Lauper 80's look.
The shorts are nicely constructed with three well-shaped panels per leg stitched together with lapped and serged seams. There's a small but functional diamond gusset in the crotch. Nice touch. Another pair of OXT's tore out in the simple (non-gusset) crotch after much wear and I had to pull a Betsy Ross on them.
The waistband is excellent, about an inch in width with two separate elastic bands top and bottom. These straddle and form a tunnel for the drawstring. That drawstring is adequate, but just, and nothing special. The same drawstring was the first thing to give out on my oldest pair of OXT's (separated in the small of the back at the point it was stitched to the waistband). The waistband is stiff and gives enough support to prevent rolling over without rubbing or constricting movement.
There's a faux zipper fly on the front. That's OK I guess, kind of pointless. Maybe you don't want someone to question your gender when glancing at your pelvis. But then if your gender is in question maybe you shouldn't be wearing slinky, stretchy shorts anyway ;-)
Now the baaad. Seems every year they tinker with the pockets on these things. Well, my favorites are from more than five years ago. I do wish they had kept or perhaps refined that design. On the current model there are exactly three pockets, masquerading as two. Two lumbar pockets are stacked one atop another. They are in the shape of an upside-down bikini bottom with the leg openings for entries and waist side stitched down. This creates rather small openings for the relatively larger volume of the odd shaped pockets. Though I suspect I could fit my wallet in there that won't be happening because the openings are only large enough for me to slip two fingers into.
The pocket closest to the back is lined in a rubbery waterproof fabric on the inside with a fabric similar to the rest of the shorts against the skin. This pocket is closed with a small diagonal zipper on the wearer's right. I can barely squeeze my keys with remote through the opening, and I can only do that after a good 15 minute yoga warm up in order to contort my arm into a position to grasp the zipper. The second pocket is formed from soft black mesh and sits atop the to the first. Fabric like the body of the shorts lies between the two pockets.
This pocket design has some pluses; the layers of fabric make it stiff enough to support the contents something like a tiny fanny pack. In fact these pockets seem to give some stability to the entire waistband. Things don't bounce around in there much when biking or running. They are out of the way for anything but crunches (situps). The angled opening make it unlikely anything will fall out. I have no fear at all of losing keys from the zippered pocket, or damaging my car remote from sweat. However the openings are so small they really limit what you'll be putting in. No way will you fit a smartphone or wallet. I really have my doubts about how many people who choose these rather all purpose shorts actually run with energy gels and don't know what else to put in there. Dog poop bags? My suggestion for this pocket is keep it but give a full-length top zip thus making the entire volume usable. I have some older OXT's with this type of pocket and it works much better. Keep the sweat-proof liner. You could then form a large gel pocket with angled opening on either side for gel packets (or dog poop).
The other pocket is again love-hate. It's an on-seam cargo style about 4"x6". That's a very good size choice, large enough to squeeze objects the size of a large smartphone or wallet into thanks in part to the stretchy poly-spandex fabric of the shorts, but not so large things roll around in there. It's closed with an 'envelope' flap; no mechanical fastening. The top is nicely angled downward from rear to front making hand entry easy. That's OK, nothing's likely to fall out...unless you're swimming (all OXT shorts make great swim trunks). The stretchy fabric means a the weight of a heavy object, or rushing water, can stretch the pocket open beneath the flap unknown to the wearer possibly leading to content loss.
The main problem with this pocket is its position. It's about about an inch from the bottom of the shorts. Any substantial object that low is sure make the leg swing like Austin Powers. In fact putting my phone in there reminds me of that old Roger Miller song "England Swings (Like a Pendulum Do)". Fabric stretch exacerbates this effect. Also, being so low means more yoga to reach down into it. Now the normal reason a cargo pocket might be positioned so low is to fall beneath a hip pocket. But there are no hip pockets on these shorts. And that would be OK, if the cargo pocket(s) made up for it. My recommendation for this pocket is to raise it up until the top falls just below the point of hip flexion. Just a bit lower than where a hip pocket might be. Put one on each side. And give at least one a zipper. Maybe add a little mesh for drainage. Maybe some divider pouches inside for small things. Voila- perfect pockets.
And a small flapped inside the waistband key pocket is always welcome.
Overall these are OK for exercise shorts if you don't put more than a a card or two in the leg pocket and have another method of carrying your phone. Pretty unsuitable for anything else because of the pocket situation. I'd gladly pay full price and more if the pockets were improved. As is they're barely worth sale price.
Last note: the hang tag claims reflective trim but my pair don't seem to have any at all except the 'REI' logo (which is mercifully subdued). Minor point.
Date published: 2011-09-01
Rated 4out of5
by dshoefromExcellent running shorts, good pocketsThese shorts are always at the top of my rotation for running. The overlapping center back double pocket is great. One zippered pocket for keys or some cash, and an open pocket for a gel or small mp3 player. The light stretchy fabric is great, and the length is a good middle ground.
I would never run with anything in the cargo-type pocket on the leg, but it can hold a phone or something when you are walking around.
I think having no liner is a plus. More versatile.
Date published: 2012-11-06
Rated 4out of5
by nallacfromGreat shorts for everyday runningComfortable and nice looking shorts. I got the Navy pair and like the color as well. I appreciate the side pockets and back lumbar pocket for storing keys while I run.
Date published: 2013-05-22
Rated 5out of5
by Triple CrownerfromMy Favorite Running ShortsI love these shorts. They are my #1 Choice for a long run. My key goes in the zipper pocket and my ipod nano and a jell shot goes in the other pocket. Personally I love that they don't have a liner because I don't like liners. I'd rather wear my own boxers and use them to prevent chaffing than a one size fits all liner.
This will actually be my second pair of these shorts.
Date published: 2013-03-06
Rated 5out of5
by cgrubbsfromgreat shortsGreat running or workout shorts. Stretchy, light, quick drying fabric. Better than same price stuff from other brands.
Date published: 2013-04-03
Rated 5out of5
by E D SfromPerfect...These shorts serve me for everyday walking around use, trail running, in the gym - super comfortable. They fit a little bigger than I had thought, however better a bit too big, than too small; I love the feel, length, comfort, pocket location (s)...Great purchase!!
Date published: 2013-08-14
Rated 5out of5
by pasantos123fromGreat shorts for Obstacle Course racing!These shorts are great for obstacle course racing such as the Spartan races or Tough Mudder. Dries fast and lightweight. I wear these shorts over my compression shorts. Gonna order a few more!
Date published: 2013-05-29
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