I have wanted to write this review on protective apparel for motorcycle riders for a long time. I have hesitated because I am not an expert on motorcycle gear, but I am an expert on loving a motorcyclist. Therefore, I have a vested interest in buying and wearing the best apparel when riding a motorcycle.
The day my husband brought home his first "married life" motorcycle, I threatened divorce. Not because of the money, but because of the dangers associated with motorcycling.
Of course, I recognize how much fun it is to ride a motorcycle, to feel the freedom associated with the wind blowing through your hair (if you have any!) I know it feels like you are blowing the cobwebs from your mind and experiencing nature. I sincerely want everyone to be allowed to enjoy life and adventurous activities, but I would like for them to do so as safely as possible.
Whether you are riding a motorcycle in busy city traffic or bouncing a cycle on off-road trails, there is the danger of injury. I have seen firsthand what those injuries look like on the way to emergency care facilities.
Therefore, my best advice, and what I can live with for my own
motorcyclist, is to wear protective apparel. This apparel provides a
double layer of protection for my husband. His skin, bones, and brain
are better protected in the case of an accident, plus he is protected from
my verbal assault each time he tries to sneak out alone with his girlfriend
(of course, I mean his motorcycle).
Protective Motorcycle Apparel
Both Driver & Passenger Need the Same Level of Protective Apparel
These recommendations are based on my own personal experience as well as my
husband's shared experience. He has tried a greater variety of items
and I had the benefit of his expertise when making my own motorcycle apparel
#1: Helmet - From birth as a motorcyclist, we all know a great helmet is imperative for protection, as well as the law in many places. There are a lot of considerations and options when selecting a helmet. To start with, you may prefer an open face helmet to a full face helmet. Plus, size matters! I highly recommend visiting a local cycle shop and trying on several helmets, even if you plan to seek out the best deal online. In doing so, I found I could not tolerate a full face helmet myself. I personally chose the Shoei J-Cruise Helmet. It is lightweight to wear and I love the retractable inner sun visor (goodbye sunglasses). The top ventilation allows air on my scalp which keeps me from sweating.
KLIM Induction Touring Motorcycle Jacket Men's Medium Hi-Vis - Monument Gray#2: Armor Plated Jacket - Many motorcyclists don't consider how vulnerable their backs, elbows and shoulders are to severe injury if they happen to lay down a bike. In fact, those injuries could take you out of the motorcycling world for a long time, if not forever. You need your back, shoulder & elbow strength for driving a motorcycle. Therefore, we wear and recommend motorcycle jackets with removable armor, which allows you to wash the jacket.
I would also note that I recommend a jacket with high visibility strips or contrast on the back so automobile drivers are more likely to see you.
Other reasons I selected my Tour Master Pivot Motorcycle Jacket shown below, I love the ventilation, the wrist velcro that allows me to tighten around my gloves, and the removable quilted liner that makes it all-weather wear.
My husband has several motorcycle jackets (all with armor), but his favorite motorcycle jacket is the lightweight KLIM Induction Touring Jacket shown below because it is cool enough to wear in the summer.
In summer, all jackets get too warm off the cycle, but some, like the recommended KLIM, are comfortable when riding.
#3: Pants - Pants with protective armor in the knees and abrasion resistant fabric to protect legs is truly imperative. I see a lot of riders wearing jeans, but they are no match for asphalt or gravel. Missing that trip to the ER over asphalt burns or ripped skin with embedded gravel will make this purchase well worthwhile.
I chose the Tour Master pants for myself mostly because I wanted the pants that would zip to the jacket giving my center body complete protection. However, there are several reasons why they make a great choice including the removable liner, adjustable velcro waist, and zipper pockets.
My husband also prefers his Tour Master Caliber 2.0 motorcycle pants.
#4: Protective Motorcycle Boots - When I see a rider wearing sandals, all I can say is "seriously!". Please value your feet and ankles enough to cover them with protective boots made for motorcyclists. You use your feet constantly. Give them the needed support and protection they deserve.
I chose the Oxford Valkyrie leather boot with a bit of a heel. As you can see, they have a more feminine appeal with their attractive stitching, but they do provide the needed protection with a reinforced shank and ankle. Plus, they are waterproof!
The Firstgear Kilimanjaro boots are made of durable leather and have comfortable, waterproof, & breathable lining. Plus, lots of protective reinforcement in the shin, ankle, toe and heel. That makes them a great choice for safety and function.
KLIM Inversion Pro Gloves#5: Gloves - Please, please, please, protect your hands! Bicycle gloves are not motorcycle gloves.
Even as a
passenger, I wear my motorcycle gloves. I chose the Cortech Heckler Gloves. They provide excellent protection & warmth while being attractive.
Let's face it, your hands or head will most likely take the first contact with the ground in an accident.
My husband prefers the Klim Inversion Pro Motorcycle Gloves. They have goatskin leather palms, high tech padding on the back of hand and fingers, and wind-stopper liner to keep your hands from getting cold.
The items shown in this article are our motorcycle protective gear choices. I hope this helps you select your own riding apparel. Have fun, but above all else, stay safe!
|Cynthia Sylvestermouse & Her Mr. Motorcycle Mouse|
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