Skip to Content

Do You Need Elbow Pads for Mountain Biking?

Mountain biking is an outdoor sport that requires a lot of energy, and you also have to look out for safety precautions. This article discusses elbow pads for a mountain bike.

A man with his mountain bike on a rocky terrain.

Mountain biking is a popular sport that is enjoyed by people of all ages. It is a great way to get exercise and enjoy the outdoors. However, it is important to be aware of the risks involved in mountain biking.

One of the most common injuries in mountain biking is an elbow injury.

So, some may wonder if you need elbow pads to go mountain biking.

The short answer is no, you don’t need elbow pads for mountain biking. However, they can help protect your elbows from scrapes and bruises if you happen to fall. So, it is certainly a piece of equipment you should strongly consider including.

Why Use Elbow Pads?

A person fixing this elbow pads.

Elbow pads are one of the most important pieces of safety equipment for mountain bikers. Elbow pads can help to protect your elbows from impact in the event of a fall. They can also help to reduce the risk of serious injury in the event of a fall.

An elbow injury can be extremely painful and can sideline you from your favorite sport for weeks or even months. So, it is definitely worth considering wearing elbow pads to help protect your elbows.

What To Consider When Choosing Elbow Pads?

A woman with elbow pads and bike helmet.

There are a few things to consider when choosing elbow pads for mountain biking.

Size

Elbow pads are not one-size-fits all. You need to choose a size that will fit comfortably over your elbows. If they don’t fit comfortably, it can affect your ability to ride your bike and enjoy the sport.

See also  How to Store Your Bike in Your Garage

Padding

The amount of padding in the elbow pads is also important to consider. You want to choose elbow pads that have enough padding to protect your elbows in the event of a fall. However, you don’t want so much padding that it interferes with your ability to grip the handlebars or shift gears.

Breathability

Mountain biking can be a strenuous activity and you will likely work up a sweat while riding. So, it is important to choose elbow pads that are breathable and won’t make you too hot.

Style

Elbow pads come in a variety of styles. Some are designed to be worn over your clothing and some are designed to be worn under your clothing. You need to decide what style you prefer.

Weight

Elbow pads can range in weight from very light to very heavy. You need to choose a weight that is comfortable for you to wear while mountain biking.

A beginner may want to opt for a heavier elbow pad for more protection. However, a more experienced rider may want a lighter-weight elbow pad that doesn’t interfere with their riding.

Material

Elbow pads are typically made from foam or plastic. Some elbow pads also have a hard shell to help protect your elbows from impact.

Fit

Elbow pads should fit snugly on your elbows. They should not be too loose or too tight.

Price

Elbow pads can range in price from very inexpensive to very expensive. You need to choose a price that is comfortable for you to pay. You can find elbow pads at most sporting goods stores or online.

See also  How Do Fluid Bike Brakes Work? Benefits?

What Types of Elbow Pads Can I Buy?

A army protective helmet and elbow pads.

Consider what type of elbow pad you want. There are three main types of elbow pads:

Foam Pads

These types of pads are made from foam and are designed to absorb impact in the event of a fall. Foam is good for absorbing impact because it is soft and compressible.

The downside of foam pads is that they tend to compress over time, which reduces their effectiveness.

Plastic Pads

Plastic material may not be eco-friendly, but it is great for creating durable and long-lasting gear. Just like the name suggests, plastic elbow pads are made from plastic. They are capable of deflecting impact in the event of a fall.

Hybrid Pads

These types of pads are made from both foam and plastic. They offer the benefits of both types of pads. Hybrid pads are typically more expensive than foam or plastic pads.

Hard Shell Pads

These types of pads are made from a hard shell material such as plastic or carbon fiber. Hard shell pads are typically more expensive than foam or plastic pads.

They offer the best protection against impact but can be uncomfortable to wear for long periods of time.

Hard shell pads come in handy if you are a more aggressive rider or if you tend to ride in rough terrain.

How Do I Use Elbow Pads?

Elbow pads should be worn over the elbows. They should fit snugly but not too tightly. The pads should not move around or slip down your arms while you are mountain biking.

See also  How Many Gears Should a Mountain Bike Have?

Check your fit by moving your arms around and making sure the pads stay in place.

When Should I Use Elbow Pads?

Elbow pads should be worn anytime you are mountain biking or doing other activities where there is a risk of falling and injuring your elbows.

Some people choose to only wear elbow pads when they are riding in rough terrain. Other sports that may warrant the use of elbow pads include skateboarding, rollerblading, and BMX biking.

What Kind of Injuries Do Elbow Pads Protect People From?

A boy sitting on the grass holding his ankle.

Elbow pads can help to protect your elbows from scrapes, bruises, and broken bones.

When mountain biking, the most common elbow injury is a scrape or bruise. Elbow pads can help to reduce the severity of these types of injuries.

The most severe type of elbow injury that can occur is a broken bone. Elbow pads will not completely prevent this type of injury from happening but they may help to reduce the severity of the injury.

Do I Need Wrist Guards?

Wrist guards are not typically worn with elbow pads but they can be worn together. Wrist guards are designed to protect your wrists from injuries.

Like elbow pads, wrist guards come in different styles and sizes. They can be made from foam, plastic, or a hybrid material.

How Long Do Elbow Pads Last

Elbow pads typically last for several years. However, the pads may need to be replaced sooner if they are worn frequently or if they suffer a lot of wear and tear.

How Can I Care For My Elbow Pads?

Elbow pads can be washed with soap and water. The pads should be allowed to air dry. Do not put elbow pads in the dryer.

See also  Can a Road Bike Be Converted Into a Mountain Bike? How?

Can I Make My Own Elbow Pads?

You can make your own elbow pads but it is not recommended. Elbow pads that are purchased from a store are designed to provide the best possible protection.

If you do choose to make your own elbow pads, be sure to use materials that are soft and compressible.

Elbow Pads Are Useful For Mountain Biking

A cyclist with full gear and a hotel.

As you can see, there are a few things to consider when choosing elbow pads for mountain biking. But, ultimately, the decision of whether or not to wear elbow pads is up to you.

If you are a more aggressive rider or if you tend to ride in rough terrain, you may want to consider wearing elbow pads.

Wearing elbow pads can be the dealbreaker between only getting a minor scrape versus a serious break. So, if you are unsure about whether or not to wear elbow pads, err on the side of caution and put them on.