I’ve got a nice new pair of Nike Pro Combat Compression Shorts. I wanted to give the product a try, even though the Pro Combat brand doesn’t appear to be designed for combat sports.
- Stay cool fabric.
- Light and tight compression.
- Ultra tight for a locked in feel.
- Dri-FIT fabric to wick sweat away and help keep you dry and comfortable
- Flat-seam construction to minimize chafing
- Price – $19.99 USD
- Style – # 363932
- Color – # 595 (purple)
- Size – XS (extra small)
The material is a very light weight polyester / spandex blend with an almost silky feel. The thread used is of high quality and silky smooth finish. It has a light weight 1.5 inch (3.5 cm) wide elastic band and a 4.5 inch (11.5 cm) inseam. The waist band is attached with what appears to be a three thread chain stitch. On the outside it looks like two evenly spaced rows of straight stitches. On the inside, it creates a binding for the edge of the short’s fabric to prevent fraying. This stitch allows for a great amount of stretching, while still maintaining a strong seam. The ends of the waist band elastic are joined with a straight stitch. The seam appears to be pressed open and a small piece of fabric is sewn over the seam. This creates a flat reinforced seam that should not chaff or irritate in any way. The hem of the legs appears to be the same three thread chain stitch that connects the waist band. This creates a strong flat hem that will allow for a great amount of stretching and prevent fraying. All other seams appear to be a simple yet strong lapped seam and sewn with a six thread, wide cover stitch. This is a very strong flat seam that also finishes the edges of the fabric to prevent fraying. There is some stretch to the stitch but not as much as the three thread chain stitch. There is a center back seam instead of a side seam. I presume this placement is for a more tailored fit. The inseam is replaced with a gusset. The inside of the thigh is a high friction area and prone to chaffing from inseams. The gusset construction displaces the seams away from the inner thigh to prevent chaffing. When possible a 2 cm back stitch (tack stitch) is used to finish seams. Back-stitching is used to “lock” the ends of a stitch line or to prevent the stitches from unraveling. For a reference A typical back-stitch is only 1 cm.
The craftsmanship appears to be above average. With a magnifying glass, I was able to find a 2 mm wave in one of the seams. This typically occurs when sewing too fast over a bump, such as a seam. The presser foot (part of sewing machine) will jumped a little to the side, when crossing a bump. It’s like a car shifting a little to one side when it hits a speed bump. This in no way compromises the quality or fit of the garment. The fact that I found this 2 mm wave, only proves that my grandmother (she started teaching me to sew when I was three) was a perfectionist when it came to sewing.
The material is of lighter weight than most compression shorts and feels, well for lack of a better word “sexy”. The fit is good with no puckering or other visual defects. The waist band is so light that I almost don’t feel it. Half way through the first training session, I noticed the legs of the compression shorts had bunched up under my gi. It’s common for compression shorts to ride up a bit, but this was way more than a bit. As I tried to pull them back down, I thought I might have to call a tow truck to pull them… Well, you get the picture. Once, I wore them under a pair of board shorts, the problem was worse. As far as the manufacturer’s claim to keep you dry and cool, this is true. I train in a very hot and humid climate (>103 degrees F). The uniforms I train in are a very heavy cotton weave. These compression shorts did make me more comfortable climate wise and did keep me dry. For that, I was very thankful.
Word of Caution:
Due to the “ride” factor, I wouldn’t wear these in competition. For everyday training in a hot humid climate they work well, and the guys I train with don’t care if I have to dig for gold to get my compression shorts back in place. However, I would not want to worry about digging for gold when I’m competing for gold.
These shorts are good for training in hot humid climates. They are best worn under loose-fitting clothes. I do like the feel of these shorts and I do like to wear them. I’ am disappointed with the fact that they creep up my legs so much.