How To Ride A Motorcycle: 10 Bits Of Essential Riding Safety Gear

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Motorcycles are fun beyond words as long as treated with respect. Once a few basics are ignored, riders can be left lingering between life and death.

This is solely because of the lack of safety equipment while riding a motorcycle. Safety gear is as important as the motorcycle itself, be it a 100 cc one or 1000 cc sports bike.

Many riders feel it as a cool factor to ride a motorcycle without a helmet, the answer is it is not. It is stupidity. There are many who in spite of having enough knowledge, still chose to ignore simple guidelines that could save a person.

One thing that should always be kept in mind is that gravity can never be avoided when a person is riding a motorcycle and here are 10 essential riding safety gear that could save your life, even if its just a short ride.:

1. Helmet:

The most important one of the lot. Riding without a helmet has been the major cause of accident fatalities in India. A full-face helmet is a must. Chose a good brand with good standards, and most importantly, one that fits you well. Also keep in mind to never drop your helmet ever. Once dropped, the protective shell will crack and will offer no more protection.

2. Gloves:

When a person falls off the motorcycle, the first part that comes in contact with the road surface are the hands. A good pair of motorcycle gloves will help protect nasty scars that the tarmac will cause when one crashes. Also, the gloves should have knuckle protection to safeguard your knuckles as well.

3. Jacket:

A motorcycle jacket will protect the upper body. They have paddings and protectors for the elbows, shoulders and for the back. Motorcycle jackets are generally expensive but are worth every rupee spent. They will also help keeping you warm.

4. Body Armour:

If you are riding in hot weather, then body armour is advisable. They offer same protection as the jacket, but are designed to be worn in hot conditions. There are many brands that make them, but chose a good brand after some research. Brands like Fox, Dainese, Alpinestars, Thor and Knox are reliable, but make sure you get the original stuff.

5. Elbow Guards:

If body armour and jackets are turning out to be way over your budget, then a cheaper option is elbow guards. They are not advisable because they don't offer good protection, but it is better than riding without any protective gear at all.

6. Riding Trousers:

Riding trousers protect your lower half of the body such as the knee, thighs and posterior. The lower half of the body needs equal protection as the upper half. Knees and thighs are very prone to injuries in an accident too.

7. Knee Guards:

Again, if trousers are working out to be expensive, knee guards are the next best choice, but will not protect your thighs or your butt.

8. Boots:

There are a wide variety of boots to choose from. Motocross boots will give you the best protection, but are expensive and heavy. If you are looking at the budget point of view, street riding boots are available from a number of brands. These boots will protect your toes and ankles, which again, are very prone to injuries.

9. Hydration Backpack:

Dehydration is a killer. A hydration backpack is the smartest move while riding a motorcycle compared to carrying a bottle of water. The backpack is small, lightweight and can carry up to 2 litres of water and you can drink water on the move, without taking off your helmet.

10. High Visibility Jacket:

The list is not complete until you wear a high visibility jacket while riding in the dark or day time. It just shows out more and makes other motorists on the road be aware of a biker. It is a simple, cheap life saver.

Story first published: Monday, April 6, 2015, 14:58 [IST]
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