BetterRide Head Coach Andy Winohradsky discusses protective gear for mountain biking:
Summertime is in full swing and that means its downhilling season! Even if you’re a not full DH racer, there’s a pretty good chance that you’ve at least entertained the idea of going to a resort; renting, borrowing (or buying…he he), a DH bike, and having a day of chairlift accessed good times. If not, I highly encourage you to do so.
However, there can be a little trepidation with the whole downhilling thing, and rightly so. Downhilling can be dangerous (just like regular trail riding), but there are a few things we can do to minimize those dangers. First and foremost: wear protective gear.
Lately, I’ve gotten a few questions from riders fairly new to the downhilling game about what gear to wear, how much, “do I really need a full-face helmet …”, etc.
So I’ll try to shed some light on the whole body armor thing, but let me first say that all this gear is made for a reason, and WHEN you crash, you’ll be glad you had it on (or wish you did!).
… And, yes, you do NEEEED a full-face helmet!
Here’s my gear list when I get on a DH bike
So there you have it. I’ve been DH’ing for a long time and I really wouldn’t feel comfortable riding with any less gear then the stuff I listed above. Have fun, be safe!
Of course learning the in balance and in control mountain bike techniques we teach in our camps would also go a long way to keep you safe. Less falls equal less injuries!