By Luke Friend published
Australian cycling apparel brand MAAP has released its MTA range of clothing designed for city riding and commuting by bike - and all the places you may stop in between.
Cycling has a clear role to play in a more environmentally sustainable future and MAAP is hoping its Transit Apparel clothing will help commuters to cycle to work - and elsewhere - in comfort and style.
The line includes jackets, a hoodie, t-shirts, trousers, shorts and a beanie with both unisex fits and those cut specifically for men and women.
To see a sustainable increase in the number of journeys taken by bicycle, the challenges of commuting need to be easily overcome. Perceived obstacles such as the weather, sweating and arriving at your destination looking like a member of the professional peloton are often viewed as barriers to those who might otherwise ride their bike to and from work. MAAP aims to tackle these concerns like any good clothing designers would: through fabric choice and fit.
“The MAAP Transit Apparel collection was made by cyclists for cyclists,” says Darren Tabone, VP Product at MAAP. “We’ve partnered with innovative product performance specialists like Primaloft, Polartec and Drirelease on new fabrics to remove the guesswork from commuting, empowering riders to get from home to work and everywhere in between with confidence in their clothing choice”.
Fans of MAAP’s clothing to date will recognise the striking block colours. But instead of race-fit jerseys and bib shorts, its MTA range features clothing that seemingly takes its lead from outdoor tech wear that’s at home both in the streets and in the mountains.
There’s both down and waterproof jackets as well as a hoodie that uses a grid pattern fleece, a material seen increasingly in cold weather garments created for cyclists. Elsewhere there are breathable t-shirts, windproof shirts and pants and shorts with a relaxed cut.
First impressions point to clothes that have clearly been designed to work just as well off the bike. The looser fit of the garments might even suggest that this is where they’ll perform best. But a closer inspection shows some details that back up the ‘made by cyclists for cyclists’ mantra.
Firstly, there are plenty of reflective details across all of the MTA range. There are also brighter colour options to sit alongside the more muted earth tones and the downright dark.
The choice of fabrics are also seemingly well considered. No one wants to turn up for a meeting - or any place in fact - smelling of sweat. To combat this, MAAP has used materials that are credited for their high-wicking and antimicrobial properties. And because the weather can be unpredictable there are also garments treated with DWR coatings as well as those designed to combat the wind and the cold.
More and more cycling brands are now viewing themselves also as lifestyle brands and the creation of ‘city-inspired’ and ‘off-the-bike’ clothing ranges are an obvious sign of this. This can often manifest itself as simply a logo on a hooded top or t-shirt. While this is probably a cost-effective way of broadening your market it's also pretty uninspired. So while we have yet to try out MAAP’s MTA clothing, it should, at least, be credited for a more thoughtful approach to this widening sector.
Luke Friend has worked as a writer, editor and copywriter for the past twenty years. Working across books, magazines and websites, he's covered a broad range of topics for a range of clients including Major League Baseball, the National Trust and the NHS. He has an MA in Professional Writing from Falmouth University and is a qualified bicycle mechanic. He fell in love with cycling at an early age, partly due to watching the Tour de France on TV. He's a passionate follower of bike racing to this day as well an avid road and gravel rider.
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