Sunday, March 18, 2012

5 things I want from a race T-shirt

My second half marathon.
A thread was taking place over on the Beginner Triathlete forums titled "RD wants to know what you want in a race t-shirt."

This RD was getting a bounty of feedback from the community. People are clearly passionate about their swag.

Most posters agreed that Technical T-shirts are the way to go, but a few said they wouldn't mind cotton Ts as long as they were decent cotton. (Wrong!)

The community was almost evenly split about whether T-shirts should be white or not, and there was some discussion about where logos should be placed.

I chimed in, too, and these were my thoughts, though I've expanded them a tad more here.

Please. No cotton Ts. That's like having moved to CDs in the early 90s and then your parents go and buy you the new album that you wanted for Christmas - on tape! Disappointment. Please use current technology.

Please offer women's sizes, and make sure they're long enough. Nothing like your muffin top peeking over and bouncing above your shorts. Not all of us "look like runners."

White is fine with me. Just don't order a gross color like mustard yellow. I have one and it is visible only at bedtime.

To buy or not to buy
Give the racer the option of not buying a T-shirt for a lower registration price. This is true especially if you've decided to order cotton Ts. (By the way, why are you ordering cotton Ts?) If you're offering Technical Ts, make it clear on your registration form.

In lieu of a T
People typically expect a T-shirt. If you're going to replace it with something else, it must have the same "a ha" worth. I don't know if a visor does that. Now, a nice wicking ballcap would be a suitable substitute.

What do you want in a race T?


Tony Van Helsing said...

Great post, it covers something I never would have thought of.

Lora Abernathy said...

Thanks, Tony.

RockStarTri said...

I don't mind colored shirts. There is the long sleeve vs. short sleeve question. One race near me give out fleece hoodies but I don't like other replacement swag. In addition to is fine though.

I've only seen previous year shirts for sale (which I liked). My running club routinely donates surplus race shirts to charities, etc.

Karen said...

You are reading my mind! Mostly I just want a shirt that fits which in tech shirts means women's sizing. If a women's size is not available, I would LOVE the option to 'opt out' of the shirt because I know it will not fit anyhow.

Alili said...

So true! I definitely wish I could opt out of race shirts, particularly in smaller races - I don't need to advertise every 5k I've ever done.

Mike said...

It would be nice if they said if it was an athletic cut or normal cut. I often order the next size up since I'm not an athletic cut shape and when they are normal cut they are huge.

I got a white tech T at a race last year and had no idea it was see through when wet until I wore it in a hotel workout room facing a mirror wall.

AmyC @ running escapades said...

Your list nails all the things I would want in a race T. In fact, the only race shirts I do wear when I'm training are just like that. One from last year's Cincinnati Thanksgiving Day Race (love the length & long sleeves!) and the RnR PROV short sleeve (again long enough on the waist).
I hope race organizers are reading your blog =)

Lily on the Road said...

What a great list of what we want / need in a Race Shirt.

One of our local winter races offered a really nice coolmax running touque with their logo on it this year for the January race. It is great to wear, identifies the race and is very useful with our cold weather running.


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