Should You Wear Chest Protection on a Bike?

When discussing street motorcycle riding gear, especially in terms of protective elements, cruiser motorcycle helmets, boots and gloves are typically at the top of the list. However, what about protection for your chest? While there is some debate over the necessity of chest protection and body armor, most would agree that having a little extra protection doesn’t hurt when riding a motorcycle.  

Importance of Body Armor

While there is no denying the importance of safety gear that protects your head and neck, such as cruiser open face helmets, your chest and back are also vulnerable parts of your body. Body armor, like chest protectors, offers a rigid, puncture-proof covering minimizing the risks to your vital organs in an accident.

Proof of Effectiveness

Unfortunately, there are not a significant amount of studies discussing the effectiveness of body armor. However, the lack of research shouldn’t undermine the obvious sentiment that more protection is better than none. This safety equipment is designed to first absorb and protect against the initial impact as well as the abrasions stemming from sliding or skidding on the pavement.

Safety Standards and Guidelines

When speaking of safety standards and motorcycle riding, most riders will be familiar with the CE rating or marking on different gear. While the American market has yet to adopt the CE rating system, many other countries have. This system is based out of Europe and began in 1993. While the CE system is not universal, manufacturers are pushing for global regulations to make production easier. However, it is necessary to note that while not every brand will have a CE logo or other regulatory symbol, it does not mean that the equipment is unsafe. Therefore, when curious about the effectiveness of gear and build quality, do your research.

Armored Gear for the Chest

As a motorcyclist, there should be no question about incorporating more safety gear. While an unfortunate truth, bikers are more likely to be involved in accidents that result in severe injury or worse. Therefore, instead of debating the effectiveness of chest protection, consider your options for purchase.

  • Vests
    An armored vest is a durable and easy to wear piece of safety gear. It provides protection for the chest, back and torso. The outer shell is hard and abrasion-resistant, and the inside is padded for excellent absorption. Also, it can be worn over your everyday clothing and under a jacket, making it perfect for incognito riding.
  • Jackets
    Another option is an armored jacket. These safety items typically incorporate armor in the most vulnerable areas, such as the elbows, back, shoulders and chest. These coats will probably be made of materials like Kevlar, mesh or leather.
  • Suits
    You can also opt for an armored suit. These pieces offer full body protection, and they can be made in one-piece and two-piece sizes. If you purchase a two-piece, the jacket usually connects to the pants. As with other armored gear, the most vulnerable body areas will include extra padding and protection.

While chest protection is not often discussed as a necessity, it doesn’t hurt to add some extra protection to your riding gear. Go to your favorite motorcycle gear shop and check out the available armored gear.