Riding gear is a must-have part of every motorcyclist’s arsenal. It’s the most important asset to have because it will protect you in case of an unfortunate event. To choose the right gear, we have made some ready guidelines that you could use while buying a riding gear.
Fit – Always wear the gear before you buy. It should snug fit without being too tight. You should be able to make all the movements that you need to make while riding a motorcycle. Make sure the protectors are covering your key joints like knees, elbows, shoulders etc. Also, check the fit with & without the liners. In both situations, you should feel comfortable.
Size – Check the length of your sleeves. While in your riding position, you want the sleeves to cover your wrists. Make sure the jacket back is long enough to overlap your pants. Likewise, pant legs should cover your ankles. You might buy the most expensive gear with world-class protectors, but it will not protect you if it\’s not of the right fit.
Functionality – There are multiple types of jackets available nowadays – Full mesh, Mesh+Textile, Full Textile, Leather+Mesh, Leather+Textile, Full Leather. You can choose depending on the purpose.
Ventilation – Considering that we are living in a tropical country, its always good to have a high ventilated gear. Even better would be to buy a gear that can control the flow of ventilation depending on the situation. In the case of full-mesh jackets, it’s the other way. You probably want to reduce ventilation during the earlier part of the day or during winters. This is possible by using the thermal liners if available with the jacket.
Water Resistance – Ideally buy the gear which is waterproof. You’ll pay a premium for waterproof apparel but if you ride a lot, it’s worth it. Separate rain gear is the next best alternative. Removable waterproof linings sound practical, but they’re hot, uncomfortable, and make you perspire. Because the moisture can’t escape, you end up just as wet as being in the rain. It’s also inconvenient to remove a jacket or pants at the roadside and zip in a rain liner or remove it. Rain still soaks exterior fabrics. They become soggy, heavy, and take time to dry.
Visibility – Reflective surfaces, especially on your upper body, increase your visibility. While the larger the surface the better, piping, insets, and panels can all help. You are easy to spot for other people on the road and avoid possible accidents. The reflections picked up by headlights may be what saves you from getting hit. Wearing a high-viz vest or straps over your jacket is also an option.
Armour – The best gear has quality impact protection, like CE-rated (a European standard), D3O. Look for jackets with extra coverage at the elbows, shoulders, and back. Pants should be armoured at hips and knees. This protection will fall below the joint it’s protecting when you’re standing with arms at your side. Make sure it’s properly placed when in the riding position. Good gear will have adjustable pockets for armour at joints to allow for varying leg and arm lengths. You’ll want armour that can be removed when the garment is cleaned. Mid-shin height is best for boots, along with a reinforced shank and ankle protection.