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Shorts, Pants And Skirts That Don’t Ride Up Or Fall Down

danielle cemprola

Tester: Danielle Cemprola is a WR columnist and blogger from Greer, S.C. Traditional running shorts were fine when she first started running marathons, because she was thinner. She says, “Once I got up to a healthy weight, I found that many pairs of shorts would ride up, either from the material getting caught between my thighs and bunching, or compression shorts that weren’t long enough or tight enough.”

Short Goals: “I’ve really struggled to find shorts that stay down, don’t chafe and are flattering.”

Run Stats: Cemprola runs a few days a week on roads. She’s run 50 marathons, and after recent back surgery has switched to halfs and does about one every month. She considered a couple of dozen shorts in search of three that passed her test.

Gear-Testing Lessons: “The number-one thing I learned was not to judge a book by its cover. My immediate inclination was to just test all the compression shorts, since I haven’t had good luck with ‘traditional’ running shorts lately—but I was absolutely shocked to find that there are traditional running shorts that stayed down and didn’t chafe—they’re not just for very thin people! I also learned that sizes in running shorts vary tremendously and to not take it personally. I wore a small in some brands and a large in others!”

Danielle’s top-three problem solvers…

Oiselle Strider Shorts

oiselle strider shorts

Cemprola likes these traditional compression-style shorts, because they “never moved while being tested and feature a 6.5-inch inseam for runners seeking more coverage.” A front pocket zips to secure a key, and the material is thicker than what you might expect but still breathable. “No chafing here!”

Pearl Izumi Pursuit 6” Short

pearl izumi pursuit

Think you need compression shorts to prevent ride-up? Wrong! Cemprola says this material is incredibly lightweight and breezy, but the length is long enough to help it stay down and keep chafing at bay. The back pocket is suitable for a key, phone or fuel, and the wide, comfortable waistband doesn’t cut into your skin. She says, “Runners who prefer a looser fit but still want coverage will love these!”

Skirt Sports Not So Cheeky Short

Skirt Sports

For anyone looking for something in between revealing compression shorts and baggy running shorts, Cemprola says these are the Goldilocks choice. With a 5.5-inch outer layer and 6-inch inner one and a wide, comfortable waistband, they are flattering yet still modest. She does caution that they run slightly large. Her best feedback? “I took them on a run early in the week and liked them so much that I wore them for my half marathon a few days later!”

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Nicki Miller

Nicki Miller

Nicki Miller is the managing editor for Women's Running and spearheads our nutrition coverage. She’s an avid runner but also loves cycling (both on and off-road), yoga and all kinds of crazy videos to do at home. Formerly the editor of Martha’s Vineyard Magazine, Nicki started her journalism career at The Washington Post. Her first races were duathlons (run, bike, run) in her twenties with her husband, and then triathlons, completing the White Lake Half Ironman in North Carolina. Since joining Women’s Running in 2013, she’s been more focused on half marathons and trail running. Some of her proudest moments have been running the Boston Marathon (first 26.2), and becoming an RRCA certified running coach and helping others take up the sport.