Saturday, June 16, 2007

HCK Grappling Shorts

I am a difficult person to fit when it comes to pants. I am over 6'6" tall and have thighs in excess of 30" around. I had heard on various forums that the HCK shorts had a long and baggy fit, so I gave them a go. I had been in contact with Howard Liu in the past and I had always found him to be courteous and helpful. However, this time, were having a sale on my gi of choice, so I bought from them to save on shipping.

My HCK shorts are black and red and feature a large HCK logo in thick white embroidery. They are attractive and stand out without having "tough guy" logos and designs. I've been commented to by non-MMA/Jiu-Jitsu people that they like the look of the shorts as well. This means I have no issues wearing the shorts to the gym or when I'm around and about. And let's face it, when you're dropping this much on a pair of shorts, you might want to get a little more out of them than just your mat time.

The shorts themselves are in two layers of polyester. I had originally thought the top layer was heavier and the inner layer wass light and soft. However, Howard has informed me that the layers are the same thickness.

I guess the point is to keep the skin relatively dry and comfortable with the inner layer and keep the shorts durable with the outer layer. If that's the case, the shorts do the job well.

I like my shorts to fit a little baggy to facilitate my fantasy of actually being able to kick, but the size of my legs sort of makes it difficult. Some shorts have the split seam to help out with that, but I kind of feel like a go-go dancer when I wear those type of shorts. The HCK pants don't seem to restrict freedom of movement. I'm pretty sure it's the gussetted crotch. Most shorts available today have the gussetted crotch, though. Perhaps the soft inner lining makes a difference, too.

This brings me to the only real gripe I have with the pants. HCK pants only seem to come in exact sizing. I prefer a few inches of adjustment to be available to me. As I mentioned above, my legs are pretty big and I typically need to buy a size or two bigger around the waist to accomodate them. Also, since I'm a big guy with a big appetite, I like to have a little room for ... umm....growth. So my usual waist size of 38 doesn't cut it. Usually I buy a 42 and adjust down as much as I can. When I bought these shorts, I was feeling particularly fat and went for a 44.

It is important to remember, however, that there are good reasons to sell the shorts in exact sizing. Aside from this, I've used my brain (and sewing machine) to make a small modification that does the job. OK, my wife made the modification, I'd probably hurt myself if I used a sewing machine.

All up, the shorts are excellent. Like everything from HCK, they're among the best I've seen for quality and the price is competitive. Unfortunately, for me, the lack of adjustment has to be a dealbreaker. If you're a more normally proportioned human with better impulse control, though, I'm sure you'll love the pants.

And Howard, if you put some shorts together with a more adjustable waist, let me know. I'm pretty sure I'll pick up a couple of pairs.

A HUGE 44% off at BudoVideos

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

really an eye opener for me.

- Robson