When it comes to riding your motorbike, what you wear is extremely important. In extreme circumstances, such as a crash or accident, your clothing can literally save your life. But your motorcycle clothing can also simply make your day-to-day riding more comfortable and enjoyable.
Complying with the law
It is against the law to ride your motorbike without a helmet (unless you are Sikh) and this includes passengers on a pillion seat, but not those in a sidecar.
Additionally the helmet you wear must comply with at least 1 of these:
- British Standard BS 6658:1985 and carry the BSI (British Standards Institution) Kitemark
- UNECE Regulation 22.05
- any standard accepted by a member of the European Economic Area which offers a level of safety and protection equivalent to BS 6658:1985 and carry a mark equivalent to the BSI Kitemark
If you’re wearing visors or goggles, they must comply with either:
- a British Standard and displays a BSI Kitemark
- a European standard which offers a level of safety and protection at least equivalent to the British Standard and carries a mark equivalent to the BSI Kitemark (ECE 22-05)
Additionally, during daylight, a tint of anything up to a maximum of 50% is legal. Never wear tinted glasses, visors or goggles if you are riding in the dark or if there is poor visibility.
Your hands are extremely fragile and in the event of an accident and subsequent fall, you could do some real damage to them. Namely, tearing off your flesh as you skid along the ground. It’s instinctive to put your hands out to break your fall and so it’s essential that you have the right gloves and you wear them every single time you ride – no matter what the weather. A proper pair of gloves will protect your hands from both impact and abrasion and leather is the best material to go for. Additionally, gloves protect your hands from the cold when riding in winter.
Motorbike boots provide protection against a variety of things including, cold and wet weather, accidents and falls and any bits of debris as you ride.
Leather provides the best protection if you get into an accident but you can also get rubber or plastic boots.
It’s important to try on a range of boots to find the ones that you’re most comfortable with. You need to be able to operate the controls whilst wearing them too.
Jacket & trousers
When it comes to your jacket and trousers, you want to get the balance right between being protected in the event of an accident and having enough movement and flexibility to ride safely.
Man-made materials are better for providing all-weather protection whereas leather is better for protecting the skin in the event of an accident.
No matter what type of clothing you’re after, you should look for extra protection for your shoulders, elbows and knees. Don’t be afraid to shop around and try on as many different types of clothing before you find the ones you’re most comfortable in.
Getting the correct motorcycle clothing is vital not only to ensure you comply with the law but to ensure your own health and safety when riding – so don’t overlook it!
At Carole Nash, we offer helmet and leathers insurance to ensure your motorbike clothing is protected. You can find out more by calling 0333 005 6428.