Best known for its technical gear for everyone from first responders to regular Joes at the range, 5.11 Tactical has been branching out into more everyday apparel — including Physical Training Ready (PT-R) pieces for women. The line comes complete with everything necessary for a solid workout, from leggings to tees to crosstrainers, and is designed to transition from indoor resistance training to hiking in the great outdoors. I put several of the women's performance pieces to the test to see how they would measure up in the gym, on the trail, and around town.
5.11 PT-R Women's Tights
I work from home and spend most of my free time either in the gym or the outdoors, so leggings make up a good portion of my regular wardrobe. I own dozens of pairs from athletic to athleisure to lifestyle brands, and the styles from 5.11 stacked up to some of the top names.
The Kaia Tight is a full-length nylon/jersey blend with flatlock seams — super soft and comfortable with just enough stretch. The leggings feature a moisture-wicking and anti-odor finish, perfect for staying stink-free during sweaty days spent outside. Dual side pockets plus a third small pocket built into the waistband provide plenty of places to stick a phone, key, credit card, or chapstick on the go. With a relatively high rise that hits just below the belly button, the Kaia Tight isn't quite squat-proof but is great for other weight training, cardio, hiking, and running errands. They run true to size.
The Hedda Hybrid Tight also features a nylon/jersey blend but adds Enduro-Flex panels with a DWR coating for added durability in areas that most commonly come in contact with abrasive surfaces. Five total pockets — including two spacious cargo pockets with hook-and-loop closures — make these leggings great for outings when you want to carry keys and other essentials hands-free. An internal drawcord allows for some adjustability at the waist. The Enduro-Flex fabric doesn't offer as much stretch as the main material, so you may want to size up if you're between sizes or carry more weight in your hips and thighs. Overall, they're comfortably functional and offer a more tactical look than your standard leggings.
5.11 PT-R Women's Shorts
I received the Merina Short in my correct size according to 5.11's size chart. They felt incredibly soft and lightweight with the perfect 5-inch inseam and front hand pockets, but sadly they were way too large on me, even with the stretch drawcord in the waistband. I passed them on to a friend who raved about them. These are great shorts, but you'll definitely want to size down.
5.11 PT-R Tanks
The Margot and Regina Tanks are both improvements on your basic workout top. They are constructed of polyester jersey with Enduro-Flex properties, sport a moisture-wicking and anti-odor finish, and feature reflective tape on the back for safe visibility during nighttime runs. The Margo has an open-back design for keeping cool, while the Regina's tie back can be worn open for a flowy effect or cinched for a more fitted look. They're both pretty roomy, so you may want to size down if you prefer your workout tanks more form-fitting.
5.11 PT-R Zip-up
With a thin, lightweight construction, the Stratos ¼ Zip is designed to serve as a midlayer in cold weather but also works great soft shell in warmer temps. The interior grid fleece is warm and soft to the touch, while the fabric wicks away moisture. It does run slightly large, but it works well for wearing another layer underneath.
5.11 PT-R Weight Vest
Although not women-specific, the TacTec Plate Carrier is fully adjustable for a customized fit even on petite women. Back yoke shoulder pads evenly distribute weight, and oversized airflow panels provide breathability. A Cordura 500D nylon construction, water-resistant coating, and Duraflex hardware ensure long-lasting durability wherever your workouts take you. It accommodates most standard weight vest plates. Once you get the hang of it, the TacTec Plate Carrier is easy to get on and off, and 5.11 Tactical offers an instructional video for finding the perfect fit. I use mine for weighted pull-ups and dips, and it comfortably stays in place throughout my workout.
Overall, the women's training gear from 5.11 Tactical is well-made, sports thoughtful features, and offers comfortable performance. Unlike some athleisure clothing, these pieces work great for women with more athletic builds. The sizing is a bit inconsistent and doesn't always align with the sizing charts, so check the reviews before placing an order. The neutral color options such as black, ranger green, turbulence gray, peacoat navy, and dusty rose give the gear a classic, stylish look.
If you're in the market for some new workout threads that can go from the weight room to the mountain, check out the 5.11 Tactical Physical Training Ready line.
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