Earlier last year, 5:11 introduced a first of its kind with the Raven Range for women’s tactical clothing. Initially with two styles to begin, Raven Range tight (which we’ll be looking at in this review) and the Raven Range Capri. These pants were designed to function with dual purpose; They were made to be flexible and comfortable like a yoga pant, with the strength and durability of a training/tactical pant.
The Raven Range Tight is made from a ‘Stretch Ponte di Roma fabric’. In layman’s terms this means a double knitted fabric which creates a highly durable, flexible finish. Another advantage to this fabric is that whist creating a body tight pant, aesthetically there is no compromise and flatters to the women’s figure. (Which is always a huge win!)
The Raven Range Tight, like most other yoga pants, has an elastic waistband. This creates a pant that is quick, simple and easy to put on. Despite the lack of buckles and fastenings, 5:11 haven’t forgotten those all-important belt loops. The belt loops make the Raven Range Tight significantly more versatile than your ‘average yoga pant’ for use across a variety of sports. For example, if wearing the pants for tactical/shooting training these loops allow a holster to be securely attached.
As mentioned earlier, this is a durable, high quality pant with stretch. The Abrasion panels on the knees reinforces this point. These panels provide extra support around the knee joint and similarly create a smooth, strong finish allowing maximum flexion. Having this panel prevents scuffing or extra damage to the pant if needing to kneel on rough surfaces. A good example where this feature would prove beneficial would be on the range or in an outdoor environment where terrain can be uneven. Additionally, there are abrasion panels on the outer, upper thighs. This is to compensate for any abrasion/damage that may occur from repeated action of a gun being holstered.
Another product feature of the Raven Range Tight is its moisture-wicking properties. Training to an optimum, whether it be outside or inside will cause the body to sweat. When sweat evaporates it removes heat from the body. The moisture-wicking properties of these pants enable the sweat to evaporate quickly from the material. When wearing the pant inside, this property draws sweat to the surface of the fabric increasing evaporation rate, aiding in the cooling process. Similarly, in cold temperatures, the moisture-wick fabric allows sweat to evaporate from the pant without taking away unnecessary heat. With this property and thick nature to the pant you will certainly remain warm and comfortable when the climate is cold.
Functionality, Fit And Cost
When first trying on these pants, they immediately felt a snug, secure fit to my lower legs. Tight enough to provide stability, but not so much that I couldn’t move in them. Unfortunately, this good fit was not consistent when the pants were fully on. They were shapely and flattering around the bottom area, however, there was too much fabric at the waist for me, which resulted in a gap between my lower back and the elastic band at the top. As you can see from the pictures below this extra fabric caused bunching at the crotch. With this issue, the pant did not fit as smooth as I’d like and needed, and in-turn had the tendency to slip down. To combat this issue, I wore an inner holster belt, however, I would not want to feel limited to wearing a belt to enjoy wearing these pants. In this review I wore the small size; Due to the already skin-tight nature in the lower legs of the small size, I would not want to purchase the extra small as then would not fit appropriately on my legs.
I like to train with free use of my hands; Something that limited this was the lack of pockets in these pants. To include at least one pocket (or even two) would have made wearing and training in these pants more suitable for me. It’s a small feature that in my opinion would significantly enhance the wear- ability of the Raven Range Tight. The Raven Range Tight currently retails at eighty pounds. From the explained difficulties I had with these pants, I feel that they are expensive for the cost. If the waist to leg ratio was modified and the pant included pockets, eighty pounds is rightly justified. 5:11 have introduced something innovative to the market, with these small tweaks I would be more than happy to purchase these pants at their cost.
Style and Purpose
The style of these pants suited me well. They felt highly durable and practical with sufficient stretch when I wore them, but additionally (arguably more important) I felt good about my image when I wore and trained in them. They hugged and flattered me in the areas I would feel most self-conscious. When one feels good about themselves, it is shown that performance is enhanced, whether in a training sense or an increase in mental well-being. In my opinion both a huge plus! These yoga pants have the added benefit of looking stylish like casual wear, after training I wore these pants to the shops and felt comfortable.
I trained in these pants when it was freezing conditions outside. The thick and high-quality nature of the Stretch Ponte di Roma fabric kept my lower body feeling warm throughout the whole duration. It was nice to be able to focus on training rather than suffering from the cold.
Conclusion and Summary
In summary, The Raven Range tight was a great piece of clothing to wear and review. Regardless to the issues of fit around the waist and lack of pockets, these pants moulded to my legs, providing firm and flexible support to my performance. In addition to keeping me warm in freezing weather. The high-quality fabric and finish to these pants sets them aside from your average yoga pant. I particularly benefited from the versatility of the pants across training and sports. If you have eighty pounds to invest, take your measurements, find the right size for you and get training in style and comfort with the Raven Range tight.