Learn about which BMX Protective Gear is right for you in our Tech School
Equipment Considerations and Prices
Making the right choice in equipment will require that you know a bit more about your options, as well as the associated costs for the BMX protective equipment. Helmets: As mentioned, there are two types of helmet dominant in the world of BMX. Freestyle riders will benefit from the skateboard style helmet, while racers will do better with the MX style of helmet. A freestyle helmet might set you back about $50, but they can go far above this price. An MX style helmet will also cost about $50 or $60, though there are options on the market that can run into the hundreds of dollars.
Wrist Guards: Wrist guards can be purchased in low or high-rise versions (higher guards cover the palms), but they should all have a splint that helps keep your wrist from bending too far during a fall or wreck. You'll find that a decent set of wrist guards is pretty affordable, and should run no more than about $15 or $20. Make sure that your wrist guards fit snugly and do not move much.Ankle Guards: Protecting your ankles is a vital consideration, and ankle guards will keep your ankles safe from many different threats. You'll find those versions that have only a hard cap over the inner and outer anklebone, but also those that have more protection for your shins as well. A good set of ankle guards shouldn't cost more than about $15 or so.
Elbow Pads: Elbow pads are important for protecting your elbows during a fall or a crash. The best option is a hard shell pad, even though this will limit your mobility somewhat. Soft shell pads can work, but they offer far less protection for your joints. Make sure that the pads you purchase fit well and that they do not have a lot of play when wearing them. You should be able to pick up a pair of these for about $15 or $20.
Kneepads: Kneepads are vital – they'll keep your knees from contacting pavement, other bikes or dirt when racing. Like elbow pads, you should ensure that your kneepads are hard shelled for the best protection available. You might also consider purchasing a pair that extends to your shins for added protection. A bad hit to your shin can be very painful, and can also break bones if it is hard enough. Kneepads run about $10 or $15 for a basic set, and about $25 or $30 for a set with shin protection.
Gloves: Choose a pair of gloves that has a good grip, but also uses breathable material to help wick moisture away from your hands. Your gloves should be able to stand up to considerable abuse, as your hands are the most likely things to hit pavement or dirt in a fall. A decent pair of gloves should set you back about $20 or so.
Other Options: If you will be racing on dirt, then a chest protector is a good idea. These can set you back as little as $50 or $60, or they can cost several hundred dollars, depending on the features and size of the protector. A kidney belt will help protect your kidneys and provide more stability while on your bike, and can cost as little as $25 or $30, though the average is a bit higher than this.
With this equipment list, you should be all set to enjoy the sport of BMX racing, whether you want to ride freestyle or hit a dirt track.