Commuting by motorcycle saves you a lot of money, but it has its drawbacks. First of all, it seems like the cars on I-70 can’t share the road with a biker without coming a little too close for comfort. Also, you can’t ride in your work clothes (unless your boss will understand your windblown appearance for the rest of the day). You always leave early enough to change your clothes once you get there, but you’re not sure if your usual jeans and a jacket are the safest attire for commuting. Is it time for an upgrade?
How Can I Tell If My Motorcycle Clothing Is Safe?
The best motorcycle riding clothing should be comfortable and provide protection from heat, cold, and road debris. It should also separate you from the moving parts of your bike. Since you don’t have the benefit of a steel cage around you, you will have to depend on your clothing to protect you in an accident.
- Pants – Your pants should cover your legs completely. They should fit closely, meaning that they should be loose enough that they do not restrict your movement, but tight enough that they do not flap in the wind. Leather is still the primary choice for protection in a collision, although a sturdy synthetic material can be a good substitute.
- Jacket – You should always wear a jacket that covers the full length of your arms, no matter what the weather conditions are. In hot weather, a jacket can help prevent dehydration; in cold weather, a jacket can prevent your arms from going numb and decreasing your reaction time. Make sure your jacket fits securely at the neck, wrists, and waist, is made of a tear-resistant fabric, and does not “balloon” at high speeds.
- Footwear. You can wear boots or shoes, but they should be sturdy and high enough to cover your ankles. The soles should have good tread and be made of thick, slip-resistant rubber. Keep your heels short and always tuck in your laces before you take off.
- Gloves – Too many riders go without this simple layer of protection. Gloves improve your grip, protect your hands from the sun, rain, and cold, and can even save your fingers and hands in a crash.
Have you discovered the best Kansas City ride routes? Attorney and regular rider James Roswold explores the passion for biking in his book, KC Biker Bible. Click the link on this page to get your FREE copy!