Wearing the right gear during mountain biking is a must. So, check out our list of the best elbow pads for mountain biking to stay protected. Elbow pads protect the elbows from any fatal injuries during a fall, such as scrapes, bruises, joint dislocation, or bone fractures. As crucial as your safety is, your comfort is equally important. A suitable elbow pad must not interfere with your movement or speed. With various features and designs, choosing the right elbow pad may be challenging. So, read on to know more.
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11 Best Elbow Pads For Mountain Biking
1. Best Lightweight: Bodyprox Elbow Protection Pads
Bodyproxelbow protection pads will enhance your mountain biking experience by allowing you to ride carefree. It extends from your elbows to your arms to provide extra protection and prevent bruises and scratches on your arms. In addition, the strategically placed foam grid will protect the elbow area from all types of injuries caused by an impact. Since one size does not fit all, these trail riding elbow pads are available in various sizes to ensure a perfect fit.
- Breathable compression fabric for optimum comfort
- Elbow pads with padding for added safety
- Doesn’t hamper the arm movement
- Abrasion-resistant material
- Snug-fit design
- Some might find these not so helpful for downhill trails
- Small padding area
2. Best Waterproof: G-Form Pro X2 Elbow Pads
The G-Form Pro X2 elbow pads feature smart flex pads that are flexible and impact-resistant. That is, whenever your elbows are hit, the padding material hardens and absorbs the shock, protecting your elbows. Wearing these pads can make you feel like your second skin, and they are comfortable to wear. In addition, these MTB elbow protection pads are available in various sizes to ensure a perfect fit.
- Extended foam padding to forearms for added protection
- Waterproof material
- The moisture-wicking feature keeps your arms dry
- Ventilated design for air circulation
- Silicone grippers to keep the pads in place
- Machine washable
- Doesn’t hamper the movement
- Elbow pads for all-day comfort
- Not durable
3. Best Durable: Demon United Hyper XD30 Elbow Pads
The Demon hyper elbow pads are made of shock-absorbing foam. When hit by a hard object, this foam absorbs the impact and protects your elbow. It will revert to its flexible state after the impact. In addition, the Kevlar front shield protects the pads from being chewed up on concrete or asphalt. These flexible elbow pads are comfortable to wear while mountain biking and come in various sizes.
- Moisture control design to keep them dry and comfortable
- Soft mesh panel at inner elbows
- Large foam area that extends the protection
- Non-slip elastic bands to keep the pads in place
- Outstanding protection
- Some might find these elbow pads bulky
Mountain biking became a legitimate sport in California in the 1970s, and the bike was created with wider tires, quick-shifting gears, drum brakes, and ground-breaking suspension.
4. Best For Comfort: POC Joint Vpd Air Elbow Pads
POC elbow pads are specially designed for rough cycling, ensuring flexibility and comfort without sacrificing movement. These are light-duty elbow pads with crash retention straps and an anti-slip neoprene interior. They remain in place during a collision and protect your elbows from serious injury. These anti-slip elbow pads are available in various colors and sizes to ensure a perfect fit. Check out this review of the product.
- Reinforced stretch fabric for comfort
- Shock absorbing VPD compound
- Durable material
- Comfortable to wear all day long
- Breathable fabric
- Some might find these elbow pads bulkier
- No straps on the upper side
5. Best Tear-Resistant: Triple Eight Exo Skin Elbow Pad
Triple Eight ExoSkin Elbow Pad is made of high-intensity eight-link foam padding. It also has six padded pockets on the sides for additional elbow and side protection. The Velcro straps will keep the elbow pads in place. These Velcro closure elbow pads are available in various sizes to ensure a proper fit. You can also check this video out for a brief review of the product.
- Sweat-absorbing cloth lining on the inside
- Abrasion and tear-resistant Kevlar cover outside
- Protects the sides of the elbows
- Neoprene breathable body
- Comfortable to wear for a long duration
- Durable elbow pads
- Easy to put on and take off
- Feels a bit hot during warm weather
- Not great for downhill trails
6. Best Stretchable: POC Joint VPD 2.0 Elbow Pads
VPD 2.0 from POC offers protection on tough rides and is appropriate for all mountain bikers. These comfortable elbow pads are soft and flexible to conform to the shape of your elbow but harden when it is stuck in a collision. The shocks are absorbed by the padding and protect your elbow from severe injuries during a crash. The adjustable elbow pads also come with a crash retention strap for a perfect and secure fit and are available in different sizes.
- Prevents sliding down even in rough conditions
- Breathable and stretchable fabric for comfort
- Comfortable to wear for a longer duration
- Offers great protection
- Adjustable straps
- Feels slightly bulky
7. Best For Hot Weather: Kali Protectives Strike Elbow Guards
The Kali Protectives strike elbow guards are made of Xelion padding and provide high-impact protection. These slip-on elbow pads for aggressive riding have EVA padding in critical areas for additional protection. It has non-slip bands on the top and bottom to keep the pad from sliding down on rough terrain. The mesh back panel allows for ventilation and adds comfort.
- Three-year warranty
- Flexible and offers freedom of movement
- Easy to put on and take off
- Keeps you dry even in hot weather
- Doesn’t fit great for muscular arms
8. Best Comfortable: Troy Lee Designs Speed Adult Elbow Guard
Protect your elbows when mountain biking or engaging in any high-intensity physical activity with Troy Lee Designs Body Armor elbow guards. These arm guards for mountain biking are crafted with a 4mm thick D30 padding insert to keep you safe from falls. They feature silicone grippers that prevent slipping and a breathable mesh design to keep you dry and sweat-free during all-day rides. These full-length sleeves are made of synthetic material and are comfortable to wear.
- Hand and machine washable on the delicate cycle
- Elbow pads with foam inserts
- Lightweight and comfortable
- Abrasion resistant cover
- Has reflective logos
- Material may be slightly thin for some
- Sizing may run a bit large
Mountain riding is a fun and adventurous means of exercising the entire body. Your core muscles and upper body will benefit while riding uphill.
9. Best Comfortable: IXS Carve Evo+ Elbow Guard
Protect your elbows with the IXS protective elbow guard, as their unique design comes without a hardshell. The guard is crafted with high-density foam to provide impact resistance and reduce the incidence of debris-induced injuries. It features an AeroMesh design that ensures breathability, comfort, and keeps you dry and cool. In addition, the moisture-wicking elbow pads come with a double hook-and-loop system to offer you a customizable and snug fit.
- Lightweight, soft, and breathable elbow pads
- Form-fitting ergonomic design to facilitate mobility
- Exchangeable guards for added convenience
- Moisture-wicking fabric
- Size may run small
- May not be tear-resistant
10. Best Odor-Controlling: Dakine Slayer Bike Elbow Sleeve
Dakine’s elbow sleeves are made breathable to keep you safe and comfortable on longer rides in hot weather. The DK impact polyurethane foam acts as a shock absorber, preventing serious elbow injuries. In addition, the stretchable extended mesh material will fit you perfectly without sliding down. In addition, these breathable elbow pads with hard shells are ideal for tough terrain.
- Lightweight elbow pads
- Durable aramid fiber armor-like shell
- Odor control technology to manage stink
- Ergonomic pattern for an enhanced snug fit
- Four-way stretch mesh with grip keeps the pads in place
- May not snugly fit some individuals
11. Best Low-Friction: POC Joint VPD System Elbow Pads
POC Joint VPD elbow pads are made with their patented viscoelastic polymer dough, which is highly absorbent and breathable. These elbow pads are ideal for mountain biking and are extremely comfortable. Its multi-layered ventilation system ensures that you do not overheat while the flexible padding hardens on impact, providing maximum protection. These impact-resistant elbow pads are available in different sizes to let you find a perfect fit.
- Low-friction construction
- Abrasion-resistant outer fabric
- Snug fit
- Offers freedom of movement
- No Velcro straps
How To Choose The Right Mountain Biking Elbow Pads?
Here are a few factors to consider before buying mountain biking elbow pads.
- Impact resistance: Elbow pads should provide you the maximum protection in the event of a collision or fall. The padding should be flexible enough to fit your elbow and strong enough to withstand the impact.
- Skin-friendly: Choose elbow pads with a soft and comfortable inner fabric that will not irritate your skin.
- Breathable fabric: Breathable elbow pads keep your skin dry without making you sweat at high speeds. This allows you to wear the pads for longer periods, even in hot weather.
- Size and fit: Ensure that the size you choose is not too small or large for your arms. If you choose a smaller size, you will end up with a tight fit. On the other hand, if you choose the larger size pads, they will slip off your elbows and not provide adequate protection.
- Durability: You don’t want to buy new elbow pads every time you fall because it is time-consuming and expensive. Instead, choose quality elbow pads that will not only last but will provide you with maximum protection.
- Additional features: Choose elbow pads that have an anti-slip design with Velcro straps. You may also consider lightweight and slim designs that don’t look bulky but ensure safety.
Jordi Sadurní, a sports scientist and cycling coach says, “When choosing elbow pads for mountain biking, find a pair that allows for a full range of movement and is comfortable to wear. The right elbow pad can enhance your performance and reduce the risk of injury in the event of a fall while riding downhill.”
Why Trust MomJunction?
Wedetso Chirhah, our experienced writer and reviewer of sports and adventure products, has created this list of the best elbow pads for mountain biking after reviewing, comparing, and researching numerous products across different websites. He has endeavored to present all pieces of information you may need to choose what suits you best. The products listed here are sturdy, long-lasting, and made of high-quality materials for optimal protection.
Mountain biking is a thrilling activity that also comes with high risks. It can lead to collision or fall, and hence it is important to protect yourself with the right gear. Elbow pads are efficient in protecting your elbows from bruises and fractures. While purchasing biking elbow pads, ensure that they are impact-resistant, skin-friendly, and fit your size perfectly.
Infographic: What Are The Benefits Of Using Elbow Pads When Mountain Biking?
Elbow pads are crucial protective gear for mountain biking, providing essential cushioning to the arms. Designed for comfort and flexibility, they offer riders peace of mind while tackling challenging terrains. Check out the following infographic to learn why wearing elbow pads when mountain biking can be beneficial, ensuring a safe and hassle-free ride.