For the avid jogger, runner, or marathoner, having a good pair of running shorts is the key to a successful running session. Depending on the runner, the preference might be for long or short shorts. While there is no objective "best" pair of running shorts, there are a lot of factors that can contribute to a comfortable, well-designed pair. Fabrics are especially important, for what runner likes to feel weighed down when he or she is trying to make good time? Breathability is next on the list, offering the serious runner comfort and wicking on those long runs or on hot days. Spiffy inserts and zip pockets make a difference and can add to the overall design. Lastly, length can either inhibit or encourage freedom and full extension of the legs which for some runners makes or breaks a workout. The following pairs of shorts have been thoroughly tested by runners and found to be the best of their kind.
The shortest shorts for men leave little to the imagination and are only for the brave of heart to wear in public. At the same time, the short length creates total freedom for the runner while the innovative design keeps any risk of flashing under wraps. The Nike Pinnacle Split Shorts for men is one such pair, with an inseam of 4" inches and an overlapping split cut that minimizes exposure. Combined with the patented DriFit brief and a rear pocket for keys or an energy gel, this is one of the best short options out there.
Another great short option is Hind's Omega Shorts for men, a with a 4" inseam but overall roomy cut. Both the mesh and woven fabrics have a good stretch to them which allows for greater freedom of movement and the looser leg opening means any size thigh can wear. Even better, less chafing since the seams were re-designed! A nice liner wicks moisture well and includes a small pocket for keys and money.
With a bit longer inseam at 5", the Men's Brooks Sherpa II shorts have a narrow cut and stretchy Lycra blend that makes a big difference in freedom. Runners enjoy the smooth elastic waistline that doesn't cut into the stomach as well as the narrow cut that nonetheless allows for a full stride to be taken. With two pockets that are a bit bigger then most but don't bounce around, these shorts are well-designed for longer runs.
Longer still with a 7" inseam is Under Armour's Pacer Shorts. Offering the most coverage of all the options these include a lot of thoughtful features such as reflective paneling for those who enjoy some extra precaution while out running, breathable fabric, and mesh paneling on the sides. The special material blend woven from polyester wicks sweat away from the skin to keep you dry the entire run.