I’ve never been a Rugby fan. Whether that’s just watching it or actually playing it. I have a vague recollection of being slightly less awful at it at school compared to my football skills. Still avoided it wherever possible though. For that reason I’ve never even glanced at the Canterbury range, mentally depositing it in to a part of my head labelled “sports I don’t like”.
When I had the opportunity to try out some Canterbury kit my response was simply “I don’t like Rugby”. “They make training kit as well” I was told, “you don’t have to use it for Rugby”.
A pretty good point when you think that Rugby players are probably some of the most ridiculously heavily trained athletes out there. You only have to look at people like James Haskell and his snowballing fitness business to realise that if you want to train hard, taking a leaf from the book of rugby (not actually a thing) might not be such a bad thing.
So I picked up some Canterbury kit and I’ve been giving it a go for the past few weeks. I’ll give you the highlights from the range, but first I’ll start with the main negative aspect I picked up.
Now, I like a small t-shirt, as my friends will disapprovingly tell you, but not ones that stick to you. The material used in the Vapordri Superlight Tee (£24) is made of quick-drying and moisture-wicking technology, which is good if you sweat a lot. The only problem for me is that it stuck to me uncomfortably. I’ve used if for a few workouts and washed it but it still does it. Luckily this was the only bit of the range which didn’t work for me – my only guess from seeing people wearing similar kit is that it’s designed to be completely skin tight.
Big fan of the Vapordri Gym shorts (£30). I mean, they’re essentially just a pair of light shorts, so what’s not to like? But they are very comfortable and loose fitting. A bit too loose to use for running, but perfect for the gym and outdoor training.
Not the most attractive looking bit of kit I’ve got, but the Thermoreg Hybrid jacket (£72) is a very impressive winter top for keeping you warm. It’s essentially a really thick gilet with loose fleece sleeves. The upshot being that it’ll keep your core warm but not make you ridiculously hot. Which is good when you’re pottering about training. I actually use it as a before and after race jacket for the winter. You need a hat to go with it though as it doesn’t have a hood.
My favourite bit of kit from the range by miles. I absolutely love the Vapordri Training hoodie (£42) for the simple reason that it’s a ruddy good hoodie. Loose, comfortable, light enough to train in but not too. I use it for indoor and outdoor training as well as the occasional cold run. Very rare I find something that fits my body so well. One of my top bits of kits I’ve used this year in fact – definitely worth a look.
Not a bad selection of items for the non-Rugby player. I think the design and sizing is still moderately focussed on the Rugby player body shape, which is probably why the majority of it fits me quite well. Whereas a lot of kit is designed to cross the lifestyle/fitness divide these days, this range of Cantebury items are full on training styles. Not sure you’d wear many of the items out on the street unless you were heading for the pitch, so they don’t seem to have compromised on functionality for style at any point (that’s a compliment – never buy training kit because it looks nice).