What to Wear When Riding A Motorcycle

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by Daniel McClain on Mar 18, 2015

The sun is shining, a warm breeze is fluttering through the trees and you quickly decide: “I am going to go for a motorcycle ride.” After a long, cold winter you may be especially eager to get out there, but before rev up your engine and speed away, make sure you are properly clothed.

To help you recall proper motorcycle attire, dig deep for that childhood song, “Head, shoulders, knees and toes.” By covering the clothing basics, you can enjoy your springtime spin while staying safe and comfortably covered.

HeadMotorcycle, safety, goggles, helmet

Sure, feeling the wind caress your face as you motor along beautiful countryside roads is all part of the experience, but without properly protecting your head you risk giving up these delightful rides forever. Wearing a helmet reduces the risk of death in motorcycle accidents by nearly 30 percent and saves over 8,000 lives a year.

A helmet is perhaps the most important article of motorcycle gear you could possibly wear. And thanks to modern technology, helmets protect your noggin and make you look good doing it. Rider Magazine recently released a thorough review of several new helmets that not only provide ultimate protection but also have sleek and attractive designs.

Shoulders

Though donning a heavy leather jacket for a hot, summer ride isn’t ideal, wearing jackets during your motorcycle rides is suggested. Even though leather jackets are incomparable when considering abrasion resistance, they are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to motorcycle jacket options.

Many of today’s modern motorcycle suits and jackets are made from 100% waterproof, composite fabric. With breathable, lightweight designs, they make for comfortable wear and easy storage. Whatever jacket route you decide to take, aim for products that have impact-absorbent padding and extra protection in areas like the shoulders, elbows and back.

Knees

Like the previously described jackets, motorcycle pants can greatly reduce the risk of road rash due to asphalt abrasion, and can even prevent broken bones. Because your legs are greatly exposed when riding your bike, they are subjected to a variety of road debris, road rash, burns and more.

Though jeans are ideal when running to the grocery or cruising the neighborhood, legitimate motorcycle pants are recommended for longer rides. Textile fabrics are inexpensive, breathable and easy to maintain, while leather pants provide premium protection but require more care.

Toes

Aside from the helmet, wearing a solid pair of boots is crucial when hitting the pavement on your bike.  Imagine quickly stopping on a slippery road or gravel path: not only will you need to immediately support yourself, but you’ll also have to support the weight of your bike. Simple shoes cannot protect your feet and ankles from serious injuries if your bike goes down or if you quickly need to stop.

Thankfully, it’s not necessary to purchase high-dollar boots (though you definitely can). Sturdy work boots, or snug-fitting boots should be incredibly stable and not easily twisted. They should provide quality protection for your ankle while also letting you easily shift gears. 

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