Excellent, dynamic short shorts with great carry capacity, ideal for quick and long-distance runs in steep conditions, but perfectly capable of taking on sea level trails too.
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Dynafit Vert 2 Shorts: first impressions
Wow – these shorts are, well, short… Dynafit Vert 2s are some of the skimpiest and most weight-shaving trail running shorts we’ve ever tested. There isn’t an ounce of wasted material on them. They sit very high on the leg and have a split to facilitate a lifting leg movement when you’re running in hills and peak – exactly the kind of landscape they were designed to be used in.
In fact, the flyweight Dynafit Vert 2s are so economical with their use of material that a ‘UK large’ is considered a medium in the US – and buyers need to be aware of this.
But strangely, although they are clearly built for speed, the storage capacity on the Vert 2s is very generous, with a zipped pocket centrally positioned on the rear of the waistband, flanked by two large mesh pouches which can take much more than one gel each. Your favorite pair of running gloves, perhaps?
There is a good supportive and highly breathable mesh inner, and the short shell outer is made with ‘Dynatastic’, an ultralight, moisture-wicking stretchy material, with a large split on the leg to further facilitate full freedom of movement. There are high vis reflective touches on the back of the shorts, and the waistband is broad and comfortable, with a draw cord as a back up.
• RRP: £75 (US) / £60 (UK)
• Inseam length: 9cm / 3.5in
• Sizes available: S–XXL
• Weight (large): 99g / 3.5oz
• Materials: Shell Polyester (100%) Inner Polyester (88%) & Elastane (12%)
• Colors: Asphalt / Black / Methyl blue / Mykonos Blue
Dynafit Vert 2 Shorts: on the trails
I’m always comfortable in standard ‘large’ running gear – but I found the large in the Vert 2s borderline uncomfortably tight, and they ride very high on the thigh too, so it’s worth considering going up a size if you don’t like your shorts to be too restrictive or revealing.
Once out on the trails, however, I soon forgot about how much flesh I was flashing, or how tight I’d found the shorts when I first put them on. I still think I’ll go up a size next time, but these shorts are certainly comfortable to run in, and the side split on the leg gives you plenty of freedom of movement – ideal for tacking steep and technical terrain.
Despite their parsimonious approach to superfluous material or weight, they have plenty of pocket space. This actually makes more sense that it first seems, as the extra carry capacity means runners can take on longer distances without wearing a race belt or loading up a heavy hydration pack to carry those trail running essentials; you could conceivably stash enough fuel in these shorts to do big runs in good conditions, without any pack, so long as you had a handheld water bottle to refill in streams.
Personally, I’m a fan of having several pockets and pouches in my running shorts, because they offer more versatility when you’re planning and executing a run. You don’t have to fill them with gels and take a phone with you on each and every run, but you can if you wish to. And despite its diminutive appearance, the zipped rear pocket on these short easily takes a standard iPhone.
The inner proved to be both comfortable and well ventilated, which is a big plus, and the outer material is dynamic, robust and quick drying.
Author of Caving, Canyoning, Coasteering…, a recently released book about all kinds of outdoor adventures around Britain, Pat has spent 20 years pursuing stories involving boots, bikes, boats, beers and bruises. En route he’s canoed Canada’s Yukon River, climbed Mont Blanc and Kilimanjaro, skied and mountain biked through the Norwegian Alps, run an ultra across the roof of Mauritius, and set short-lived records for trail-running Australia’s highest peaks and New Zealand’s Great Walks. He’s authored walking guides to Devon and Dorset, and once wrote a whole book about Toilets for Lonely Planet. Follow Pat’s escapades on Strava here and instagram here.