Padding (arms & knees)

stevepj Posts: 38
edited February 2011 in MTB beginners

I was wondering if anybody wore padding when out & about?

When i'm in my local woods i don't have any issues, but when i go somewhere bigger (Cannock Chase) i get nervous and it's starting to effect my riding. I was wondering if i got some pads if this would help.

Why are all the parts i've upgraded on my bike, now standard on the latest model!!


  • ride_whenever
    ride_whenever Posts: 13,279
    Pads will help your confidence. But riding more and faster and bigger is probably a more sensible idea.

    If you do go down the pad route then get something lightweight so you dont encumber your style. The D3O stuff would be my first point of call..
  • .blitz
    .blitz Posts: 6,197
    I think a bit of protection can be useful. Cannock is not especially hardcore but pads can make the difference between a comedy off and a more serious one. The number of times I have shoulder-charged a tree or slid off onto my knees it's great to be able to laugh about it and get back on and carry on.

    As above, a bit more skill would probably help as well :oops:
  • paulbox
    paulbox Posts: 1,203
    I picked up some 661 (vegie?) knee pads a few weeks back, they were £10 in the bargain bin at local Halfords. Haven't used them yet but I think I will start when I remember to take them out of the boot of my car.

    PS. Came off my road bike on Tuesday, wish I'd been wearing pads then... :roll:
    XC: Giant Anthem X
    Fun: Yeti SB66
    Road: Litespeed C1, Cannondale Supersix Evo, Cervelo R5
    Trainer: Bianchi via Nirone
    Hack: GT hardtail with Schwalbe City Jets
  • IDave
    IDave Posts: 223
    If you are looking for knee pads and you are quite small then you might want to check these out:

    They're a bargain at that price.
  • rockmonkeysc
    rockmonkeysc Posts: 14,774
    For XC I don't wear any pads, even when I know I will ride fairly hard. For trail centre riding I wear 661 Kyle Strait knee pads & Veggie elbow pads only because I sometime try keeping up with fast riders who are a bit better than me.
    661 Kyle Strait knee pads are really good, I have take some big knocks in mine and they (and me) are holding up pretty well. Good value & very comfortable.
  • Northwind
    Northwind Posts: 14,675
    Crashes happen, not a bad idea to be prepared for them (they have a habit of happening when you least expect it so I don't even go for the "only for riding somewhere hard" or whatever, I did 2 days at Fort WIlliam and never came off once then came home, did a very basic XC ride to spin some stiffness out of my legs, not paying attention on an easy descent, over bars, 2 broken ribs :lol: So I think technically I should wear no body armour for really hard stuff, I never crash, and just wear it for easy stuff I'll not treat with respect.

    Anyway. Kyle Strait kneepads are a good choice, they've got an excellent level of protection (side pads as well as front) and are very comfy, I've done XC racing in mine no bother. Cheap too. But there's loads of options for knees.

    Arms aren't so easy, there's less good choices for elbows. I tried a couple, but soft pads tend to need to be very enclosing and sweaty to stay in place, and small ones tend to be very stiff and dense to get the protection. So weirdly it makes sense to go for big, hard pads because they stay in place better and can be better articulated, and don't need to be attached as firmly. My POC Bones were expensive and look stupid but they give more protection than any soft elbow pad I've ever seen, yet they're more comfortable and far less hot than any soft pad I've used just by their design.

    661 have a good elbow pad too. Raceface's ones all seem a bit too arm-socky.
    Uncompromising extremist
  • I always wear pads - I'm in the line of work where an injury prevents me from working. It's not as bad as if I was self employed but I don't want to take the risk. Had a couple of offs with them and I've only had dented pride so far. Without pads I'd have had at least bruising and grazing, so clearly they weren't the biggest crashes I'll ever have (I hospitalized myself a year ago) , but I wouldn't be without them.

    I also wear a full face if I'm out on my own incidentally...

    Yes you feel stupidly overgeared on your first trip out but after that you'll be used to it and not care. You may even build the confidence to try the black Monkey rocks one day!

    Personally I spent a bit extra on my pads as I liked the fit (Poc Bones) - I figured I'd be an Idiot to spend less, find they weren't comfortable and stop wearing them. Most people say fit is the most important part of a pad so shop around (or if mail order make an honest judgement when they arrive rather than go just by price). They don't do much good off they slide off in a crash too easily!

    A couple of people have suggested improving your skills too - I've done a couple of courses up at Cannock with Cycleactive and They each brought me on massively and I would recommend them instantly. If I had to chose I'd currently go with Thebikeschool - couple of local lads who have recently set up. They are a bit cheaper and skipped over some of the more basic stuff bar a refresher (which suited me) meaning I learned how to corner properly after many years in the saddle! I was ion the intermediate course...

    Best of luck,

  • shx8000
    shx8000 Posts: 222
    I always wear a Helemt, but other than that, the only time I ever seem to fall off is when I am wearing pads lol. guess they just give me that extra bit of (over)confidence.
    have a full face that gets used if attempting any downhill or when at bike parks.
  • I tend to wear troy lee under shorts that are padded at lower spine hips etc as guy i was riding with had his femur pop out of a broken pelvis, and it wasnt a bad off. It was just hard ground. Dont wear other pads but use kyle strait knee pads sometimes but generaly to keep my knees warm.

    Saying that i havent rode anywhere massivly dangerous but im going to wales from the flatlands of suffolk in april so my kneepads will be more than just knee warmers. Also plan on getting some arm/elbow pads for the trip.
    pain is weakness leaving the body...
  • Northwind
    Northwind Posts: 14,675
    Shorts are where it starts to get a bit less obvious a choice, bad femur and pelvis injuries are pretty rare... I wear a pair of 661 Bomber Evos most of the time, they're as comfy in use as any lycra shorts and not bulky, and offer a decent amount of protection... Properly fit and forget. More protective shorts are out there too of course.

    But then my right leg's held on with some M8 bolts so, it seems sensible.
    Uncompromising extremist
  • tsenior
    tsenior Posts: 664
    northwind, do these have the padded gusset bit like normal lycra riding shorts?

    i've invested in some protection recently and am well covered everywhere else but am concious that i have zero natural padding around my hip bones.....sort of feel that this and the old cocyx are the last vulnerable spots.
  • Northwind
    Northwind Posts: 14,675
    They don't, but others do- the Bomber Ultimates do, and so do the POC ones (I hate chamois shorts so I was a bit miffed about that, they seemed like brilliant kit otherwise)

    I think for most people it's probably overkill but it's your legs after all :lol:
    Uncompromising extremist
  • tsenior
    tsenior Posts: 664
    mmmm, i've never had any armour (apart from a regular helmet) but seem to be going ALOT faster since getting a full suss and after a big solo descent the other week decided that had i stacked it the consequences could have been pretty serious.

    so bought a FF and some knee pads but then cant stop thinking about how it would be just my luck to prang a bit of not covered :roll:
  • Northwind
    Northwind Posts: 14,675
    That's the problem isn't it :lol: A mate of mine loves his armour "I prefer sweat to pain", he doesn't ride without his pressure suit, massive shinpads, wrist and ankle supports, etc. Looks a bit odd but it doesn't stop him, he wore all that stuff for 10 Under the Ben and got more laps in than I did.

    But, thing is, last time I rode with him he crashed, a really nasty high speed one, and was completely disgusted that he lost some skin from between his shinpads and shorts. "All this armour and it didn't work!" :lol: Course, if he'd not had it all on, he'd have had more to grumble about but he always thinks about the bits that it didn't protect.
    Uncompromising extremist
  • tsenior
    tsenior Posts: 664
    LOL thats it: where do you stop? think i'll maybe get some unobtrusive soft padded top/shorts in time for snowdon this spring and leave it at that.

    at least with the protection side of it i have a healthy budget as its difficult for the mrs to argue against safety gear........unlike bits for the 3rd bike in progress.