winter warmer

By Simon Bradley

The more observant of you may have noticed that it’s actually pretty damn’ cold outside. If you’ve been hardy (or foolhardy, it depends on your position) to venture out on your bike then you won’t have been able to help notice that, no matter how sunny it looks through the window, winter is really still here and is happy to make its presence felt just as soon as you get moving.

So I was a very happy chappy indeed when a package which fell through my letter box turned out to contain a set of EDZ thermals. Even better that they are my size as well. Time, it would seem, for a quick winter ride.

First impressions are pretty good. The set comprises of something called a Technical Sweatshirt and a pair of thermal trousers. They're made of low bulk microfibre and are a very dark black. They are very light and thin but even just holding them they feel reassuringly warm. There are no bulging seams and they look well finished. The trousers have a wide elasticated waistband and are quite tailored in appearance. Ok, you can relax. We are not about to carry pictures of me in my underwear, even if it is thermal. We’re not that kind of site, and I’m sure there is some UN mandate to limit that sort of unpleasantness anyway.

Putting them on is very easy with no zips or fastenings to worry about. The trousers are a snug enough fit that it would be uncomfortable to wear anything (other than pants) under them but that in itself means that it is perfectly reasonable to wear them under leathers or jeans without them becoming too tight as a result. They also don’t ruck or fold up so you don’t get uncomfortable from localised pressure. The top can go over a tee shirt of straight next to the skin. This one is a large, and it’s loose enough but not baggy on my pretty average frame. The neck opening is snug but not tight and the sleeves are loose enough not to snag on watches and so on. Again, the whole thing is thin enough to go under a jacket or full leathers without causing any problems.

So, all togged up and ready to go, I wander round the house getting increasingly hot for the first test. What are they like for overheating? The answer is very good indeed. Yes, you get quite hot but because the thermals are breathable it doesn’t get too much like a Turkish bath inside. So far so good.

Outside, and the temperature gauge says it’s -2°. That should do for a test. I’m wearing vented leathers with the thermals underneath, and although I’m not exactly boiling I’m not cold either. 20 minutes later and my hands and feet are frozen (summer gloves and race boots), my nose is bright red and would be running if it defrosted but the rest of me is actually still quite comfortable. I’m getting impressed.

Changing into something more sensible, I now have normal winter riding gear on over the thermals and 140 miles later I’m still warm. Now I really am impressed as the thermometer has dropped towards -4° and it has snowed a couple of times. It’s worth mentioning, though, that the collar is short so you do need a neck tube of some sort to protect your throat when it’s really cold.

But that’s still not enough for me. The next day it’s a sub-tropical zero degrees. So I go mountain biking. Wearing nothing but the thermals. Not only am I perfectly warm enough but I actually find that the material wicks the sweat away nicely so I stay dry as well. Until it starts snowing again, that is. Now I’m wet but the thermals are still keeping me warm.

When they do get smelly and crapulent, by the way, just chuck them in the washing machine and they come out good as new.

I’ve used a lot of winter kit in the past, ranging from the stuff issued to Arctic Warfare teams through to Damart and all sorts of other things. I can honestly say that this EDZ thermal suit is the best I have ever used by a country mile. And at under forty quid for the set (£19.99 each part) it’s great value as well.

Get more information on the range, including stockists, from or by calling 01900 810260.

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