RDX Adjustable Abdominal Compression Flex Shorts Review
RDX is one of the UK’s most widely known fight brands, who are now pushing their products over to the US, as well as already having popularity in a large number of countries. They have a reputation for producing quality gear for any level, with reasonable price tags. They’re often people’s first choice for equipment when they’re starting out in martial arts.
About the item
The RDX Adjustable Abdominal Compression Flex Shorts are designed to be used with RDX’s Gel Abdo Guard and Groin Cup (See our review here), and are sold with one included. They’re somewhat unique as far as compression shorts go, because as well as a ‘pocket’ for the groin guard, they also feature several exterior Velcro straps to hold the guard in place. These connect to the guard whilst inside the cup compartment, and go through slots in the material, sticking to the outside of the shorts. They can also be worn without the groin cup too.
Visually these compression shorts do look quite striking, however the straps and Velcro pads look slightly odd compared to other shorts. The black design works well, with no design as such. The white and red RDX logo is bannered around the waistband and a larger version down the left leg. There is also an RDX label above the groin area (just in case you couldn’t tell the brand already), and then at the bottom of the right leg are the words ‘Power Compression Shorts’ in white.
Materials and Craftsmanship
These compression shorts are made predominantly with an anti-microbial fabric which does a good job of keeping sweat away from the body, making exercise much more pleasant. It’s also fairly comfortable on the skin, as you would hope for from compression shorts. There aren’t really many tags in these either, just a small one with the size on, so no scratching of labels either. The stitching on these seems flat and secure, which means you don’t even notice them on the skin, and the stitches appear to curve slightly as they run down the leg, making them more form fitting. So far I haven’t encountered any fraying or stitches coming apart, as may be encountered with lower quality products.
The graphics on each leg are printed on in Vinyl, which gives a great look and feel, with a slight shine especially on the large ‘RDX’ logo, and even stretches well with the material, however over time and with frequent use, these do start to peel. The soft areas of the groin guard’s strap system make use of three large soft Velcro areas, one on each side and one on the back. While this sounds horrible, these areas are surprisingly nice to the touch, and you would be forgiven for not even realising they were designed for Velcro. This said, they stick surprisingly well.
The compression shorts are incredibly comfortable and I found them to fit these rather well. They even work perfectly well without the groin guard for running or other activities where you don’t require a groin guard. I’ve often worn them under Muay Thai shorts purely for comfort. The straps are a little awkward to attach and un-attach though, so don’t expect to be able to put in or take out the groin guard mid-session.
My main issue with these RDX compression shorts is that I found the groin guard compartment to be slightly too far forward. Because of this I found it was never quite in the correct position. As the groin is such a sensitive area, this was obviously a bit of an issue for me. This fit will likely vary from individual to individual however, so may well sit fine on most other people’s bodies. I also felt that the material on the inside of the cup could have been more slacked, and was far too tight for the groin guard to sit over comfortably, however this was less of an issue. When using the straps, this issue was mostly resolved though, as the guard could be adjusted and pulled into a more comfortable position, which is a big advantage over other compression shorts with groin guard compartments.
Another issue I found was that everything seems to stick out slightly too much. As mentioned in the RDX Groin Guard review, it does create a much larger bulge than other groin guards, and the Velcro straps could easily get caught on opponents. This isn’t an issue at all if the compression shorts are worn underneath something else, however I could see these getting easily caught or knocked if worn during Jiu Jitsu.
These seem to be around the £20 region, which is about the same if not less than other RDX compression shorts, and make a good buy for people who love compression shorts with integrated cups. Ignoring the cup and straps though, these are super comfortable shorts and are well worth the money.
+ Comfortable material
+ Clean, modern design
+ Innovative strap system for groin guard
– Sometimes holds groin guard in wrong place
– Graphics start to peel after some time
– Straps can get caught
Feel free to add your own thoughts on these in the comments below.