elbow/knee protection


Likes Dirt
Hi all, posted this in the girls-only section, but thought I would post here too because supposedly I am old ;)

looking for suggestions for some comfortable, decent elbow and knee protection for xc/trail riding and (later on when I am more confident) some more aggressive riding. Doesn't have to be female specific but comfort for long rides and fit is important.

2 weeks ago I had a pretty bad fall down some stairs in the wet (stone cold sober too), and suffer elbow bone bruising and a badly bruised ligament as a result. I haven't had any major falls on the bike as yet, but I like to push my boundaries, im trying more technical trails and am getting more comfortable with tighter trails and using less brakes - so its going to happen sooner or later. If falling down some wet stairs can give me a fortnight+ of twingy pain and epic bruises... I am learning, I tend to fall off a lot, I would like to be able to do justice to my bikes, and would rather get some protection!

plus - I cant afford to take time off from work/research (my supervisors don't believe in weekends - I don't think they would look upon broken bones, stitches and a week off in a particularly favourable light...)

also - I don't care how gumby it looks riding up a fire road with padding.

Cheers! :)


Eats Squid
There's the decent stuff here that does the business. http://www.pushys.com.au/bicycle-apparel-clothing-protection/protection.html Check out the 661 Rythmn or Pro-tec Double Down ranges

There's some padded undershorts for downhillers about the place too. You could also look to some of the snowboarding gear that'll be on special any day now..

However, don't discount the ghetto approach of a plain old elastic elbow or knee support stuffed with a square or three of gauze/old towel...and learning how to fall 'properly'. Especially the latter...even if there's no 'proper' way other than try and be a bit relaxed about it!


Likes Dirt
Arm's are pretty easy.
I've got a set of older 661 soft shell arm pads that my wife passed on (too big for her and didnt stay in place), she now has the Fox Titan Pro, which seem very good, hard outer shell and nice padding.

Knees/shin/legs are a bit tricker.
I've been using the 661 Comp Knee/shin pads of late (hard outer shell) but they do move around a little, and can be a little uncomfortable at times.
I was previously using a set of Mace knee/shim pads.

My wife wears Race Face Dig knee pads, and I think she finds them to be ok, but don't mix so well with shin pads.
She's been looking for a knee/shin combo..

Do you need knee/shin or just knee ?


Have a look at g-form pads

I have a set to protect my broken elbow... Prob won't do much to actually prevent your elbow from breaking in a serious fall... But it sure will take a lot of the brunt out!!

Nerf herder aka Pushie Enterprise.com stocks them!
Super comfy (actually forgot to take them off once because they didn't feel like they were on)

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


The Great White Rooks Hunter
I'm running a set of TLD lopes knee shins, I got them cheap and thought they'd be no good for XC/AM stuff.

but they are surprisingly good, don't effect me in the slightest apart from stopping the cool melbourne air brushing over my shins in the morning. Originally bought them for 'heavier' all mountain riding, now I wear them everyride.

because there is no strap above the knee and only an elastic 'sock', flexibility is great. this also means in a crash they might slide which is a down side to this design.

i think the key to good pads, is trying on HEAPS in a store, which is hard as not many stores stock a large supply any more. Every set is a different shape/size, one will be right for you!

i really like the look of the soft style gform pads, but just can't see them stopping a serious Injury, but obviously better then nothing.
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Likes Dirt

+1 for the G-forms. Both my wife and I have been using them for a while now. They are light, super comfy and easy to wash as we put them through the washing machine when they get a bit stinky.

I am so use to wearing them that I feel naked on the bike with out them. They are the best pads for XC riding in my opinion as you can pedal all day in them.

Also it is not a bad idea to practice falling off the bike more cleanly by doing summersaults and that kind of stuff. As you get older you get more unco at falling. In some situations, like going over the bars you might instinctively roll out of a crash or get you hands and arms out of the way. It might save some injuries.
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Likes Bikes
Hi guys, I'm thinking of buying the Raceface charge arm pads. I just want them for light protection when I stack it. I'm just riding riding trails like OMV, Manly Dam etc. I keep just falling and cutting my elbows often because of stupidity.

So just wondering if anyone has brought these or that any experience with them and whether it's true that they are more like arm warmers and not really for protection. there are pretty cheap so that's a plus but I don't want arm warmers. I don't want to get bulky ones like knee pad ones.

Here's the link for for anyone that's interested.




Likes Dirt
Not to sure most of the other posters here are chicks, and no offense to them but guys don't really know *how* things fit women differently.
First, don't bother with "women specific" pads. Usually they are just sized down men's versions with no other differences in them. Theighs aren't built the same, chicks aren't really smaller there. Arm pads seem to be the total opposite and it's taken me 4 pairs to find ones that fit.

I'm giving a -1 to G-Form. I saw them in a shop, tried them on and could barely get the things off. I have skinny arms with practically no muscle and the M was too tight. Plus they have about zero padding, it never would've prevented an injury from any of my falls. I also tried on several sets of just basic elbow pads from 661, did not like. The Veggie was bulky and felt terrible while moving around. The plastic Comp is set to one arm position with little movement options. I'm sure others are good, we have an older set that was just too big in the arm area but felt great otherwise.

I'm the wearer of the aformentioned Titan Pros. So chosen because they fit perfectly on my arm, they have a rubber thing in the elbow to hold them in place, and they have a great range of movement. They also fit under most of my jerseys, they have a hard shell, and never move on my arms. Seriously, can't reccomend them enough. If you've got the money, POC gear felt great but i couldn't justify the $100 price (cheap us price too) when the Fox was $50

The Dig knee pads feel awesome. Can wear them all day without even realising, but they are bulky and won't fit under chick pants. Big big big fan, saved my knees so many times. Go for any ones that have padding or something around the sides too. I frequently hit the inside of my knees on the frame. I'm short, so many of the knee/shin combos are too long for my legs.

I'm guessing i looked stupid, but when trying on pads don't just stand there and walk around. Actually make the movements you're going to make on the bike. You're never static on the berk. Last fall i had was down a rock, the front hit a divet that everyone else had hit and made worse. I tried to jump over the bars and would've made it but my foot got caught on a shifter. Landed straight on my knees but it was nice soft dirt, hurt for several days tho. Old folk just don't heal nicely. I also wear a mouth guard for a lot of riding. Hit my mouth once and have been paranoid ever since. I see people ride with tongue sticking out and all kinds of scary thoughts pop up.
Well, good luck then.


Likes Dirt
Thanks muchly for all the suggestions :) And thanks Stinky1138 for confirming what I thought... womens specific = same s**t only smaller and more expensive.

I really am not too sure about those g-form pads - I understand these non-newtonian fluid things well enough to know the pads are going to absorb a good blunt bump/fall, but I am not so sure they would protect against any pointy edges. I would prefer a bit of side protection too!

Will go try out a few bike shops in the area this weekend and see what they have - Hopefully my LBS have some good ones.

As for falling - my last spill was an over the bars and the guys I was riding with said it was very graceful ;) The one that occurred less than a minute later onto a big rock was more my usual gumby self. Still - practicing summersaults in the backyard is probably a great idea and will confuse the dog so thats even better!

Cheers :)


Just to throw in some more brands.....used Kali elbow protectors for ages (am not wearing them now as injuries are healed and I've gone back to my complacent self) presently wearing Fox Launch knee pads - these are great - forget they're on, but you'll need to try before you buy as are a bit more of a snug fit than my old 661's which became a bit saggy with age (like their owner)


Likes Dirt
I bought myself some 661 riot elbow pads last week and wore them over the weekend - sure enough, I fell on my still-injured elbow - didn't feel a thing! (YAY! :high5:) Its amazing how much *closer* the trees on your regular trails feel when you have an injury ;)

Tried on some TLD knees - didn't like them - did not feel like they would stay on my knees. Would like something that is comfortable and secure next to skin (or long tights in winter) rather than needing long pants. Think the knee pads might take a longer time to decide on as I will be wearing them most often.


Likes Dirt
Thread update: I went with the POC joint VPD knees as they were on sale @ TBSM. Took them out for a ride over the weekend and whilst they are QUITE tight they did not overly restrict movement (or blood flow!) and after a decent warm up, they were not as hot as I was expecting. I didn't come off the bike (for a change) so I cant comment on how they handle a fall, but I did spend a decent amount of time throwing my knees down onto hard, bumpy and pointy stuff like concrete, bricks and gravel and I had no complaints!
I guess the top band will stretch after a while and fit my legs/not be so tight so they will become even more comfortable.


Likes Bikes
I'm wanting to try the G-Form knee pads in person to get the right size. Does anyone know any shops in Greater Melbourne that have these in stock? I read in another thread that Ride On Bikes, Kew stocked them, but they are now closed. Thanks.


Likes Bikes
FYI BMX Mad in Boronia have these. There wasn't much stock on the weekend but they said they were getting more. I'm glad I went in to try b/c normally I'm a medium for knee warmers but the large in the G-Form was really tight around the calf, so I'm going to have to wait to try the XL/2XL/3XL.

I'm wanting to try the G-Form knee pads in person to get the right size. Does anyone know any shops in Greater Melbourne that have these in stock? I read in another thread that Ride On Bikes, Kew stocked them, but they are now closed. Thanks.


Likes Dirt
I went with POC too, namely because they looked the part - but also because they are soft in hot weather or with body heat but become rock hard in an impact. I agree they are tight, but as mentioned, surprisingly not overly hot.


Likes Bikes
I have some 661 Kyle strait pads which I use for heavy duty stuff, I use to wear them all the time and they are low profile, can even fit under jeans. I have an older pair which have an internal hard shell which would probably provide more protecton. I checked out some POC pads at TBSM today and they looked realy good.

My next set of pads will either be POC or 661 Evo D30 I would recommend a good balance between protection, looks and comfort. I would check them out first hand rather than order online. When I started many years ago I wore a full upper body Dainese Suit when downhilling, I don't know how I could move or didn't die of heat exhaustion but the protection was amazing.


Likes Bikes
I have some Alpinestars elbow and knee pads which I am pretty happy with. Not too bulky or uncomfortable...I generally forget I am wearing them to be honest. Not had to "test" them thus far, but off too Buller in a couple of weeks so might get a "test" then. ;)


Likes Dirt
great to hear positive things about POC armour... just got myself VPD knees and elbows for racing, although they may become more or less permanent as I try to keep up with the kids later :)


Likes Bikes
FWIW, I've seen the G-Forms in action a few times, and they are astonishingly effective, given their lack of bulk. My 12yo races BMX with them, and he's come down on them HARD a couple of times. He's taken chunks out of the padding, but not out of his knees/elbows.

I've also binned it in rock gardens with G-Form knees, with good results.

They are definitely a 'try before you buy' proposition, though.

+1 for new POCs, too - I find them a bit bulky for all-day wear, though.