With advances in protection, comfort, and ventilation there’s almost no reason not to wear knee pads when you ride. These are the best we’ve tested this year — and will all make great gifts.
Leatt AirFlex Pro
We’ve tested a lot of knee pads and these are the best we’ve encountered. Weight is just 150 grams per pad and they offer superb ventilation and articulation. Protection is also top notch, something we’ve proven on the trail numerous times. Price: $79 | More info at www.leatt.com
POC VDP 2.0
POC protection always seems to do the job and look good doing it. It’s a great brand with good ergonomics and quality, and the VDP pads are no exception. They articulate well without calling attention to itself until called upon in a crash. Price: $110 | More info at www.pocsports.com
Most knee pads are made of soft materials due to their articulation and ventilation abilities. Riders don’t want their protection to call attention to themselves the whole ride. But when the terrain gets very rough and the riding aggressive, there is no substitute for hard shell pads to protect from severe rock hits. The Armoform is the best we’ve found this year with their ability to articulate, ventilate, and protect. Price: $110 | More info at www.dainese.com
Alpinestars Paragon Pads
For light duty protection without extra weight, these pads are a great choice. They are light weight with an elastic slip-on fit that is held in place with silicone printing on the inside of the pads. The Paragon pads are reinforced in key areas to improve durability and perforated in places to aid in ventilation. The fabric and the protector pad are pre-formed to improve the fit and comfort of the pads. Bottom line these 300-gram knee pads are a bargain and they stay in place comfortably. Price: $40 | More info at www.alpinestars.com
iXS Flow Pads
The Flow pads are iXS‘s lightweight, single-strap solution for the rider who wants to descend as well as climb. The knee gusset helps prevent unwanted twisting while spreading impact force, and the X-Matter softshell pads are constructed with a slow-rebound foam to dissipate impact energy. Price: $70 | More info at bike.ixs.com
This article is part of Mtbr’s 2016 Holiday Gift Guide. For more gift ideas and holiday guides, CLICK HERE.