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Essential Cycling Short Essential Cycling Short Essential Cycling Short Essential Cycling Short Essential Cycling Short Essential Cycling Short Essential Cycling Short
  • Essential Cycling Short
  • Essential Cycling Short
  • Essential Cycling Short
  • Essential Cycling Short
  • Essential Cycling Short
  • Essential Cycling Short
  • Essential Cycling Short

Essential Cycling Short

$ 148

Model Measurements

  • Kaelani is wearing size Medium // Model is 5'10" / bust 34" / waist 28" / hips 40"
  • Anna is wearing size X-Large // Model is 5'9" / bust 45" / waist 33.5" / hips 47"

Need help determining your size? It's easy!


Essential for every adventure.

So. Many. Firsts. The first cycling short EVER from Machines For Freedom. The first new piece in the Machines’ line to feature our new inclusive size range, extending from X-Small to XXX-Large! The first cycling short truly designed for the long-distance rider.

Many view shorts as the novice kit, a first step on the way to bibs. But our community was saying something different… They aren’t beginners; they’re out there riding centuries and multi-day tours, mile after mile. But they prefer the easy in and out of a short without losing any of the technical benefits of a high-performance bib.

Enter: The Essential Short. Designed for the endurance rider who simply prefers a short. With thoughtful details like a yoga-inspired waistband to eliminate uncomfortable pressure and a seamless silicon leg band so they stay put. The 8.5" Inseam makes for a versatile, mid-thigh fit. 

After more than one year of development, we’re confident this is the best cycling short for women. Period.

      • The 8.5" Inseam makes for a versatile, mid-thigh fit. 
      • The Essential Short features the same fan-favorite chamois as Machines’ Endurance Bib. It’s graded for 6+ hours in the saddle, bacteriostatic to inhibit infections, and wide enough for most women’s sit bones.
      • The yoga-inspired waistband is revolutionary: compressive enough to stay up without sagging, but soft enough to eliminate elastic bands that dig when in the riding position.
      • New seamless leg bands stay put without squeezing.
      • Machines’ iconic paneled construction combines style and a flattering sleek silhouette.
      • Highest quality European fabric is compressive, moisture-wicking, and silky soft to the touch.


Sizing Calculator


Size & Fit 

WAIST (in) HIPS (in)
XS 23.5 - 25.5
34 - 36
S 25.5 - 27.5
36 - 39
M 27.5 - 30.5
39 - 42
L 30.5 - 33.5
42 - 45
XL 33.5 - 36.5
45 - 48
XXL 36.5 - 39.5
48 - 51
XXXL 39.5 - 42.5
51 - 54


Notes about fit
    • For cycling bibs and shorts, the HIP MEASUREMENT is the most crucial factor. 
    • Measure around the WIDEST POINT of the hips/bum. 
    • If you are between sizes or petite (5'3" or under), we recommend SIZING DOWN for a compressive fit. 
    • A snug fit is crucial to performance. 
    • Check out our FIT GUIDE for more detailed instructions, or pop your measurements into the fit calculator above for a personalized recommendation! (Please note, the fit guide requires chest, waist and hip measurements.)

The Chamois

  1. Ultra high density ischiatic inserts will stay comfortable for up to 6 hours in the saddle. Positioning works for all sit bones widths.
  2. Thermo-molded design makes this chamois look, and feel, less bulky.
  3. High density ‘pelvic track’ insert shaped for a woman’s anatomy.
  4. Extremely soft and breathable fabric. Polymide-carbon threading makes the fabric ultra fast drying, bacteriostatic, and reduces heat gain during long hours in the saddle.

Customer Reviews

Based on 81 reviews
My go-to cycling short!
Terrific bike short for a bike packing weekend
You better believe it!
Staying Power
Perfect shorts...

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Shipping & Returns

Shopping for cycling clothes isn’t easy so we took the risk out of shopping online.


Get your order within 1-4 business days, even to Hawaii and Alaska.


Don’t love it? No problem. A pre-paid return label is included in every shipment.


We ship worldwide! Free for orders over $500.