Best Skating & Skateboard Pads and Protection Gear You Need

Complete Guide For 2020

Updated: July, 2020

Prologue

Ask any pro skater or a skateboarder how they become what they are today and they’ll tell you: it was by failing and falling countless times till they mastered what they wanted to learn. 

I always tell beginners “If you do not like pain, you won’t enjoy skateboarding (or skating)” since the two are very much connected. You learn it only by tripping over again and again and it is a part of the learning process.

To do a successful ollie on your new skateboard or a slalom stop on your inline skates, you have to first do a hundred unsuccessful ones. And with that comes bruises and gashes.

But sometimes, falls can get serious and that is where you need to consider your safety. Never underestimate the damage a simple fall from your skateboard can cause to your body. Sprained wrists and broken ankles are pretty common in the skating world while serious head injuries are dreaded nightmares.

“Ideally, you’d want to spend more time on your skates (or board) than in the ER”

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Why is it necessary to wear protection?

It’s a common sight to see skaters roaming around without wearing any protection gear.

If you’re a beginner, you will fall

This is pretty straightforward and I already talked about it. Learning skating or skateboarding heavily relies on you trying, falling, getting up and doing it again. So it only makes sense to protect those areas since you know you’ll fall.

 

If you’re experienced, you still may fall 

It is not like you suddenly stop falling off your board entirely once you’re past the beginner’s stage. You keep falling no matter how good you get, it is just that the frequency of it reduces drastically. But you still fall, and you’d know how to fall correctly by then but a helmet never hurts.

 

If you don’t fall, other people can make you.

It is similar to driving a car. You can be the best driver in the world but if someone wants to or is careless enough, they can and will bump into your car. The same thing applies to skating and skateboarding – you might be very good at what you do but an absent-minded pedestrian on the sidewalk or an inexperienced skater on the skatepark can collide with you at any point and make you trip over.

Why don't people wear protection?

They are experts and don’t often fall or know how to fall

The guys who’ve been doing it for years know how to successfully avoid an accident or even if it goes south, they know how to handle the situation correctly. But still, responsible skaters and skateboarders do wear helmets and other safety gears while going through packed roads or performing very dangerous stunts.

 

They (might) think the concept of safety is not cool enough

Now this applies to the kids and teens around your block who think helmets are for losers. Sure, you don’t look extra fly when you wear one of those but responsible people who care about their safety know what to prioritise. But if you choose to remain unbothered by your safety, at least think of how you being hurt will negatively impact your loved ones.

Different kinds of protection & Safety

There are a lot of things that you can put on that protects each part of your body from hits, abrasions & fractures. Some of them are optional, some of them are niche-based but some are must-haves. Let’s see what they are.

Helmet

Broken bones and sprained wrists heal but a cracked skull leaves a mark and can be fatal if you’re not lucky enough. Helmets are that one mandatory piece of safety gear that you must have on at all times. 

 

Why wouldn’t you want to protect the most important yet delicate organ of your body? And since falls are very common in the skating world, helmets are indeed something not to skip.

 

While purchasing a helmet, don’t go with any off the rack helmet instead, purchase the ones specifically designed for skaters and skateboarders. They come with special protection at the back that prevents concussion and other serious traumas. Premium ones come with cushioning to give that extra comfort and protection. Lights or reflectors are also seen in helmets that make night commutes very safe.


Two things to note while wearing helmets: One, not to wear it way back so the forehead is not protected properly. Always wear it towards the front so that it sticks out to prevent injuries to the front of the head. Second, always wear correctly fitting helmets and have the chinstrap tightly fastened to prevent any wobbles

Wear a Helmet

Knee Pad

After the head, the most commonplace to get injured would be the knee so it only makes sense to wear safety gear to protect that area. Knee pads come in a variety of different forms – some are small and cover only a portion of the knee while the other expensive ones come with full padding.

 

Although experienced skateboarders don’t often wear them since they know how to fall properly, beginners are strongly advised to wear them since they’ll be hurting the knees a lot.


Professional Vert skateboarders almost always wear knee pads as it is a part of their style – it includes very high steep ramps and vert pools that take you 10-20 feet into the air, and should anything go wrong, the safest way down is by sliding on the knees and that is where kneepads become essential

Wear a Knee Pad

Elbow Pad

There is not much elbow action going on while skating or skateboarding but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t consider protecting them. They, like the other pads, come with cushioning that reduces the damage while also protecting you from abrasions.

Wear an Elbow Pad

Sale
Triple 8 Saver Series Wristsavers (Black, Small)
  • Pair of wrist guards with replaceable high-density, impact-resistant front and back splints
  • Shock absorbing EVA foam secured between the splints and wrist for cushioning, combined with tough, 4-way stretch nylon mesh provides a snug but comfortable fit
  • Butterfly strap design with 3 hook-and-loop straps to customize fit; suitable for skateboarding, skating, and snowboarding
  • Available in four sizes: J fits 6–7 in (15.5 cm-18 cm), S fits 7–8 in (18 cm-20.5 cm), M fits 8–9 in (20.5 cm–23 cm), L fits 9–10 in (23 cm–25.5 cm)
  • To determine proper size, measure hand circumference at the knuckles; manufacturer’s 180-day limited warranty

Wrist Pad

Wrist pad, wrist guard and slide gloves are three variations you might wanna consider. If you are small on safety and only want to avoid laceration on your skin while you fall, then a wrist pad is what you want.

 

 In serious hits, you may fracture your wrist and wrist guards prevent that from happening. They come with either metal or plastic pieces that prevent any sudden twists and traumas.


A slide glove on the other hand is a very niche product as it is mainly worn by downhill skateboarders. They slide their hands over the asphalt while going downhill fast for maneuverability and the pucks attached to these gloves allows them to do so.

Wear a Wrist Pad

Crash Pants

These are basically protective clothing one can wear under their usual clothes that provide protection for coccyx, pelvis and hips. The good ones are not very bulky to be worn comfortably inside but come with paddings on vital areas to prevent abrasion. While going at very high speeds, these become vital safety gear. If you invest in high-quality ones they will feature breathable air mesh that makes wearing these very comfortable.

Wear Crash Pants

Sale
Shock Doctor Shockskin Lax Relaxed Fit Impact Short (Black, Men’s Medium)
  • Leading sports protection manufacturer^Performance and protection in mind^Worn by professional and college athletes worldwide
  • SHOCKSKIN integrated fabric and vented foam pads, secured by high frequency seams, move and contour with the body for ultimate comfort and protection
  • X-FIT BRIEF CUP RETENTION SYSTEM integrates a wraparound internal mesh brief/supporter for unparalleled comfort, fit and stability of proper cup position
  • RELAXED FIT exclusive pattern developed for ideal anatomical fit without compression, providing maximum freedom of movement. Constructed with flatlock, chafe-free seams
  • IMPACT PROTECTION provides added shock absorption in critical areas, enhancing primary gear coverage for hip, thigh and tailbone, and fabric that wicks moisture away from the skin

Lights & Reflectors

This is a no-brainer if you often skate or skateboard at night, since you need to be visible to the pedestrians and motor vehicles. On roads or street walks, not being seen is dangerous since even if you’re riding safely, people who don’t know you’re coming can bump in or drive into you. So having helmets with reflectors and custom light strips installed underneath your skateboard or on your skating shoe can make a difference between being seen and being hit.

Wear Lights & Reflectors

Shin Guards and Ankle Guards

This applies more to the skateboarding community although skaters can relate too – while doing grinds on rails and curbs, when things go wrong your shin gets hit pretty hard and is, personally, one of the most painful experiences you can have in your skating career. The shin is a very sensitive part of your body so it only makes sense to have something protect it should anything go wrong.

Many skate shops also sell ankle guards since you’d also want to protect your ankles from being fractured while falling from a height or simply twisting it while performing a hard trick. All joints are susceptible to damage and the ankle is no exception

Wear Shin & Ankle Guards

Storelli BodyShield Leg Guards | Protective Soccer Shin Guard Holders | Enhanced Lower Leg and Ankle Protection | Black | Youth Small
  • IMPACT PROTECTION: Materials absorb up to 90% of impact to ensure a safe landing on any surface. Made stronger for safer soccer. Engineered to maximize lower leg and ankle protection without compromising performance or comfort.
  • FITS MOST SHIN GUARDS (NOT INCLUDED): Comes with 2 leg guards (1 pair) featuring built-in shin guard pockets that hold guards in place, eliminating the distraction of constant manual adjustment.
  • BREATHABLE AND SWEAT WICKING: Employs lightweight materials that wick moisture away from the body to ensure maximal breathability. Body fabric composition: 82% Nylon, 18% Spandex. Foam composition: 100% Urethane.
  • AND UV PROTECTION: Enhanced with and treatment to prevent the development and spread of bacteria, fungi, and odors. UV resistance protects skin from harmful UV rays.

Skateboard Shoes

They can be thought of as insignificant or trivial but can help you stick to your board when doing a crucial trick or while going downhill at exhilarating speeds. These shoes come with flat outsoles that stick well to the flat surface of the skateboard. Sure you can use regular sneakers but skateboard shoes do the job much better and don’t cost much, so why not?

Consider Skateboard Shoes

Sale
DC Men’s Court Graffik Skateboarding Shoe, Black, 10 D D US
  • Cup Construction.
  • Vent holes for breathability.
  • Lightweight Mesh Tongue.

Which Skateboard Is Best For You?

Below, I have everything neatly curated to help you choose precisely which skateboard is right for you as per your use case. So without any further ado, let us roll into it (pun intended).

Price: $79.99

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Last Updated: 5th July 2020

Price: $25.00

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Last Updated: 5th July 2020

Price: $264.99

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Last Updated: 5th July 2020

Price: $146.19

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Last Updated: 5th July 2020

Price: $79.99

If you click this link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

Last Updated: 5th July 2020

Price: Price not available

If you click this link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

Last Updated: 5th July 2020

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If you click this link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

Last Updated: 5th July 2020

Frequently Asked Questions

It is not dangerous per se. All you have to do is ensure proper safety gear is used to avoid injuries. Learn how to properly fall e and progress in a sensible manner.

Skating, just as skateboarding is not inherently unsafe if you follow the basic safety protocols such as wearing safety gear and progressing slowly.

You should definitely wear helmets as they are crucial safety gear that prevents harm to the most important yet delicate part of your body.

Technically you could and there is nothing particularly wrong about it. They all serve the same function. But it won’t be the most efficient way to go about it.

It should fit perfectly and remain snug. The chin strap should not be loose since we don’t want the helmet to wobble on your head. A proper fit ensures optimum safety.

Falls are inevitable in skateboarding so you should make sure to receive the least damage from them. Wear safety gear, learn how to properly fall and progress in a slow manner.

Yes, you need them although they are not crucial. Elbow pads and knee pads help prevent abrasions and injuries to the joints, especially when you’re starting out.

It totally is, provided it's done under the right condition and proper supervision. Buy a skateboard with average (slow) bearings, good ones go really fast. Secondly, have all the essential safety gear.

A few falls here and there don’t do much damage. But in the long-term, small but frequent skateboarding injuries can amount to complications down the road.

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