2015 Honda CBR650F Riding Gear
One of the first set of riding gear with a middle-weight motorcycle from 2015

Importance Of Riding Gear

Now in India everyone has been very keen on getting riding gear even if they ride a normal 150cc commuter motorcycle. About 5 years back just a helmet mandate was enough and still, people wouldn’t wear them. I started riding almost 8 years back with a scooter and the first thing I got was a good motocross helmet, cheap protective gloves and hard-plastic body armour from Fox.

Although It was just a scooter, I used to ride over the weekends to different destinations within a 100 kms radius. Me wearing all this gear gave made my parents the assurance that I am doing my part of being safe and responsible. But little did I know that it was just showoff and the gear I was wearing wouldn’t protect me if I got into a really bad accident.

Luckily I realised it 2 years later and got myself my first riding jacket and used it for another 3 years while on some MotorBeam shoots too. I was here only part-time and would help out the team for comparison shoots or something like that. But even then I did not have “proper gear” because I was still using cheap gloves.

Importance Of Riding Gear
This was my first ever review on MotorBeam with the complete riding gear I had

Peer pressure is good at times

I was told by so many people to wear proper protective clothing even then but it really didn’t strike me until I met with a small accident. We had gone off-road on to some trail in Igatpuri and I lost grip while riding my TVS Apache 180 and got hurt. The gloves were torn completely while I had bruised my knee very badly. Luckily the top half was not hurt as I was wearing my riding jacket.

That day I realised the importance of complete riding gear. For the lower half I couldn’t afford a set of riding pants but I started using knee guards which turned out to be a safer bet. Shin length riding shoes with knee guards and proper riding jacket with at least level-1 protectors and leather gloves.

Although it was costly back then but I realised it is still cheaper than not having a body part! It was at that time I started getting hooked to MotoGP and WBSK as few friends would watch it and I began to take interest. Single piece riding suits and they would ride the motorcycles at such blistering speeds and they would walk it off if they crashed!

I was in shock and awe when I would see that but more of it was how costly were those riding suits. As I compared my gear to those riding suits, my investment was literally nothing! And then surfaced two videos, one showcasing the cost of riding gear against a body part while another was a set of people riding on the track and sliding into bus stops and vehicles.

Importance Of Riding Gear
Right before losing the front, yes I was wearing a complete racing suit

Having a real-world crash experience

Lastly, the importance of a riding suit was taught to me when I raced at the MMRT, Chennai for the first time and took the tightest chicane at over 60 km/hr and ended up going low-side on a race-spec motorcycle. I remember how well it gripped and I still crashed! I walked off without a scratch on me but the bike wasn’t rideable.

Even after this there were times when I let go and skimped on some riding gear like gloves or maybe wear sandals while visiting college. It was the last exam of my 7th semester when I met with an accident right before reaching college. The ABS sensor on my bike had failed and the car in front of me had to use emergency brakes.

I almost took a sweep but ended up hitting the tail light and my right hand had a lot of cuts. I had to get 4 stitches on the pointer finger and 2 on the other knuckle. Luckily I didn’t have a fracture or else things could’ve been a lot worse. I took that test by reaching the college an hour late on the same day but with the help of a writer because I could not write for another month.

A message was clearly conveyed – Dress For The Slide, Not The Ride. And since then I have been wearing proper necessary riding gear all the time. At least a helmet for getting out and bringing home groceries as the shops are a small ride away. Riding to work, I wear a riding jacket, gloves and a proper full-face helmet.

Turns out this has become a ritual! I might not have the latest pair of clothing from any specific brand but I will definitely have my riding gear up-to-date. Same has become a thing within my riding group, everyone now actually flaunts their riding gear more than their motorcycle.

2019 KTM Duke 790 Knee Down Riding Gear
Doesn’t really matter if it’s a big bike or a small one, all the gear all the time! (ATGATT)