Motorcycle-riding is an expensive hobby. Just ask any long-time rider. Yet, the same riders will probably tell you that every penny put into their bike and their safety makes the experience more fun.
Investing in the proper attire to use your motorcycle is just as essential of paying the cost for oil refills, fuel and other general maintenance of the bike, itself.
The number one most important safety gear every rider needs is a helmet. In New York, motorcycle operators are required by law to wear a helmet and eye protection.
While shopping, look for a helmet with a sticker on the back, indicating that it is approved by the Department Of Transportation (DOT). Beware of fake stickers by also checking for the DOT approval symbol printed on the inside of the helmet. This seal of approval means the helmet has been tested to absorb shock in an accident.
Make sure the helmet fits snugly to your head so that it would not wobble around in an accident. The most effective helmet style design is the full face model, which offers the most coverage and comes with a visor for eye protection.
You should always wear long sleeves and long pants without any holes or tears in them while riding to protect your skin in case of a fall or accident. Usually, regular jeans and a cotton long-sleeve shirt won't be enough to protect yourself against abrasions.
Instead, you can opt to use protective clothing designed for motorcycle riders. You may choose a full motorcycle suit or a pants-and-jacket combination. While looking at your options, it's best to choose brightly colored apparel to increase your visibility while riding.
Because there are no car walls to protect you in an accident, every inch of exposed skin is at risk. Thankfully, there are special motorcycle gloves you can purchase to protect your hands. These gloves are made to fit the hand positions on the handlebars for optimum comfort. They can also help keep your hands cool, warm or dry, depending on weather conditions
If you're just starting out, you can use winter gloves or gardening gloves while learning. However, gloves made for motorcycle riders offer the most protection and comfort.
Your footwear should protect your foot and ankle in a crash. That means flip-flops, tennis shoes and heels are a no-go while riding a motorcycle.
Instead, choose footwear that rises past your ankle, has a thick sole and is sturdy in the toe area. Some riders may also carry boot covers to use in the rain or for extra protection.
Though the cost for this gear can add up, the protection and visibility it offers significantly outweighs the expense of a severe injury in a motorcycle accident. However, even with protective gear, you may still suffer injuries if an accident occurs. After a crash, it's a good idea to talk to an attorney to learn more about your options for compensation.