SEA MMA Gear Guide

Under Armour Heat Gear Leggings Review

Introduction

Under Armour produces a wide variety of sports apparel, and is apparently quite popular among wrestlers in the States for their compression clothing. Since very few other brands that I know of produce leggings in the first place, Under Armour automatically becomes a prime choice for its relative affordability, if you can get your hands on one.

Official Specs

  • Strategically placed ergonomic seams add to overall comfort by reducing abrasion in high impact areas
  • Armour®Stretch improves mobility and accelerates dry time with lightweight fabrics built in a 4-way stretch
  • 30+ UPF protects your skin from the sun's harmful rays and inhibits premature aging
  • Anti-Odor Technology prevents the growth of odor causing microbes
  • Inseam Length: Size LG 26.5" (+/- 1/2" per size)
  • 7.0 oz 85% Nylon/ 15% Elastane.

Aesthetics

Comes in three colours - Black, White, and Midnight Blue. The design is simplistic, with the Under Armour logo on the right thigh and the UA tag behind, nothing else. Very functional. The UA logo on the front starts to crack quite quickly with a couple of washes, so that's a good thing there isn't more designs around as well.

That said, after seeing the man that made leggings semi-famous with his 'magic pants', Dream champion Shinya Aoki, I'm surprised more flashy designs haven't sprung up on the market yet. I've seen Under Armour logos on his sponsored clothing before, so I would have expected UA to pick up on that. I'd get one of the technicolour ones just for kicks, and to scare the hell out of my training partners.

Form & Fit

This pair of leggings fit pretty tight. I usually go for that no-brainer S size when dealing with American products, but this one gave me a surprise and made me feel very self-conscious about my waistline. No kidding, the S size was tight as hell, and I could not squeeze into it despite being a 28!

This is actually good news for the smaller guys I've seen that compete at 58kg, a rare brand that sizes for them. Mine was passed over to a training partner that was smaller than me, and it fit him like a glove (not the best analogy for a site that reviews gloves, but you get what I mean.)

A caveat here. If you look at the sizing chart, it does say that S is for 28-29. However, I have a suspicion this has to do with how tight you like your compression clothing, and my body type. I like it snug enough to hug my muscles and show a bit of bulge, but not too tight that I feel my juices being squeezed out of me, if you get my drift. I fit a range of clothing from 28-30 depending on their cut, and my thighs/calfs aren't exactly small.

Anyway, for guys closer to my size, M is perfect. Snug enough, but not too tight. It gets progressively looser as you wash and wear, so it'll eventually size up to you. You might want to handwash instead of machine if you want to maintain the elasticity for a longer time. Given how stretchy it is, length shouldn't be a problem. It reaches all the way down to my ankles without any excess material.

Do note there's also the Cold Gear line which is basically a thicker material, if that's what you prefer.

Functionality

The main reason why I wear leggings is to protect my sensitive skin from flaring up during BJJ, especially with all that friction on the gi pants when playing guard game. This leggings do a pretty darn good job at that, and I don't even notice it's there.

There's no restriction in movement, no abrasion at the seams, no discomfort, nothing. Feels just like a second skin, and I love it for that. In fact, I wear this for stand up training as well, and I still have full range of motion when executing high kicks.

The material is also very breathable, so you can still stay cool with the leggings on, and it wicks away the moisture pretty decently too, though it does lose out to the MMA specific rashguards.

In terms of durability, they probably won't last forever, but will serve you for a pretty long time. After half a year, only the threads at the bottom of the leggings have come loose. The material has thinned somewhat, but still serviceable.

Of course, leggings have an added ability of making the gi pants more likely to slide up your legs during BJJ, and adds a bit of grips during submission grappling. Just another reason to wear them.

Affordability

The leggings cost US$ 39.99 (SGD$ 52) on the UA website. That's pretty decent compared to rashguard prices and the rare grappling leggings I've seen from other brands that cost US$ 50 and upwards. Given that there are few grappling specific leggings on the market in the first place, probably because it's not that popular among MMA practitioners, this pair are well worth the moolah. Even the compression leggings for other sports like running or cycling are still fairly overpriced.

Getting your hands on the leggings though, are another matter altogether. Overseas shipping to SEA on the UA website is ridiculous! Last I checked, it costs US$ 38 (SGD$ 48) for a single pair of leggings! Despite having seen all sorts of ridiculous shipping prices, this is near the top of my list for madness. A pair of leggings hardly weighs anything, and the cost doesn't scale even if you buy more items. You'd probably have better luck on shipping with Amazon.

Ok, now that I've gotten that off my chest, your best bet is again, eBay. Try as I might, it's hard to find them on any other online retailer with decent shipping out, and I've yet to see them on any MMA sites. Do note that you'll need some patience and luck hunting for this though, as they're not the easiest to find.

Conclusion

If you are the kind that digs leggings like me, Under Armour is the best value for money, shipping not included. You'll have to work a little harder than usual to get your piece, but it's well worth the effort.

Disclaimer
All comments in the review are my own personal opinion. Prices provided in brackets are merely for reference and are based on exchange rates at the time of writing.

If you like this review and found it helpful, please post a comment or let the company or retailer know too. Should you decide to purchase them online, you might want to consult the online buying guide for advice.

Comments (2) Trackbacks (0)
  1. I’ve got both the UA leggings and Scramble’s rainbow spats, and for looks I’d obviously go with the Scramble any day of the week but for fit and feeling definitely UA. I liek the way they are hugging much tigther without reducing flexibility and I feel like the give me increased stability and they truly feel like a second skin. They also feel less flimsy and overall better quality, and the rubbery lining at the ed of the legs in combination with the snug fit keep them from rising up my calves as the Scramble spats do a bit.

    But I just want to point out that I still love the Scramble spats to bits and they are my favourite pair, but that is because of looks and not functionality.

    • Yes, the UA hugs tighter initially because it’s most elastic, but I feel that the Scrambles might last longer. My UAs stretched out a lot more in the same period of time compared to the Scramble, and is a little loose now.


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