Riding a motorcycle gives a sense of freedom because you’re out in the open and it truly is an awesome feeling. However, being out in the open also means additional dangers because you’re not as protected. There are a few things about your safety that you’ll need to consider if you’re going to ride a motorcycle.
Yes, it’s annoying having to wear some extra gear while you’re riding. Sometimes it may not be flattering on you. Sometimes you get so hot. Sometimes you feel like your gear gets in the way. Trust me, I’ve had all of these thoughts and frustrations.
You just never know what’s going to happen while you’re riding. You could be the best motorcycle rider around, but that doesn’t necessarily mean the drivers around you are good drivers. If you’re wanting to be minimal but still be safe, there are a few pieces of gear I recommend:
- This Bell helmet from Motosport.com. Wearing a helmet is a no-brainer (no pun intended). It’s obvious why you need one, but you’d be surprised at how many people don’t wear one.
- Riding jeans from Motosport.com (click here for men’s jeans and here for women’s jeans). Having the right leg protection is one of the most misunderstood needs about riding a motorcycle. Your legs are pretty important, so let’s keep them safe.
- This bluetooth headset and intercom from Motosport.com. Let’s face it, listening to music and talking on the phone hands-free while riding can make the ride easier and much more enjoyable.
Wearing a helmet while riding a motorcycle is the most important action you can take for your safety. There are several myths about helmets and their inability to protect one’s head such as hindering hearing, limited visibility, etc. Though a helmet is inconvenient, these myths (or excuses as I like to call them) should not be heeded. Helmets save lives.
Over the years, helmets have been carefully calculated and engineered to provide the best protection. The increased technology on helmets gets better as each year goes by.
Iihs.org stated that “because serious head injury is common among fatally injured motorcyclists, helmet use is important. Helmets are about 37 percent effective in preventing motorcycle deaths and about 67 percent effective in preventing brain injuries.”
The helmet I recommend is the Bell Qualifier DLX Helmet (link to Motosport.com). Bell is usually considered one of the cheaper brands of motorcycle helmets, but this helmet has proven to work well in many different aspects. Essentially, you get a great quality helmet for a great price.
This helmet has a lot of features that I love. It’s light, snug, has great peripheral vision, and it comes with two interchangeable visors, one clear and one tinted. When looking for a helmet, it’s best to get one that is DOT (Department of Transportation) approved. This means that the DOT tests these helmets and finds them suitable for motorcyclists on the road. The Bell Qualifier DLX Helmet is DOT approved. Aside from that, it is also ECE (Economic Commission for Europe) approved, meaning it’s similar to the DOT standards but applies to European countries.
I have been guilty of wearing unsuitable pants while riding my motorcycles. “I’m just going down the street” is the excuse I’d give myself and validate that every day pants or even shorts were fine. These types of pants simply aren’t safe enough. Your every day pants don’t provide enough protection for your legs in the case you’re in some sort of accident.
Potential accidents aren’t the only reason you need to wear suitable pants. When riding a motorcycle, your legs are next to an extremely hot engine and exhaust pipes, not to mention those wheels that are spinning hundreds of times a minute.
I recommend these riding jeans found on Motosport.com (click here for men’s jeans and here for women’s jeans). I normally do not recommend wearing jeans while riding a motorcycle, but these types of jeans are different because they’re made specifically for riding with added protection. I also like these jeans because you can still feel fashionable while riding safely and not have to wear leather if that isn’t your thing.
Bluetooth Headset And Intercom
There are a few ways to listen to music while riding a motorcycle, but the best way is through a bluetooth headset. This is a hands-free way to listen to your jams while enjoying your ride.
I highly recommend the Sena Bluetooth Headset & Intercom (link to Motosport.com). This is a device that easily attaches to most motorcycle helmets and has a boom microphone that can adjust to any position you need it to be in. The headphones attach inside the helmet so you don’t need to worry about sticking anything in your ears.
This headset and intercom can connect to other bluetooth devices including your phone and your fellow riding friend’s device (with a half a mile connecting distance!). I love this device because it’s easy to use and makes riding much safer; you don’t have to worry about dealing with your phone or iPod to talk to someone or listen to music during an outing on your bike since this headset does it for you.