Riding the motorcycle might look like a fun activity but, it’s a whole lot more serious than how it seems. A lot of risks are involved due to how exposed you are on motorcycles than in vehicles.
For safety purposes, it is only right that you treat motorcycle riding as important as they really are and adorn necessary apparel and essential gear whenever you want to ride them.
When we talk about essential gears, most people immediately begin to think of helmets and the likes without knowing that our outfit counts as one too.
Can you wear shorts on a motorcycle? Let’s not just only talk about that because people can pretty much wear what they like but; is it actually safe to wear shorts on a motorcycle?
Yes, you can wear shorts on a motorcycle if you choose to but, it is strongly not advised and, for good reasons too.
Shorts leave your thighs and legs exposed to the burning heat from the engine of the motorcycle plus, there’s still the danger of you being exposed to burns upon contact with the exhaust pipe.
Let’s even leave that and, think for a second about what will happen in the case of an accident. Do you still think wearing shorts while riding a motorcycle is a rational thing to do? Well, we don’t.
Is riding a motorcycle in shorts dangerous?
Extremely dangerous with a capital “D”. While it may make you look cool as you ride around town, you should know that there is actually more to life than looking cool.
We think safety should come first before thoughts of being fashionable. Apart from major accidents, there’s still the risk of minor ones that can be prevented, happening on simple rides of going from point A to B.
When you wear shorts to ride a motorcycle, your legs are left bare and placed at the risk of being burnt by the very hot engine and exhaust pipes.
You really cannot be too careful and feel it cannot happen to you because it hasn’t happened yet. We have seen this happen on very short, simple rides, and like they say; “prevention is always better than cure.”
Reasons why you should not wear shorts on a motorcycle
The most obvious reason why you should not wear shorts on a bike aside from getting burnt is for overall protection from debris found on the road.
It is not as though good riding pants act as complete shields against these but, to a large extent, they offer great damage control.
With shorts, your legs are left at the mercy of objects like glass, rocks, and stones. Additionally, you should know that shorts would not protect you from your motorcycle itself.
If you are not in the habit of properly maintaining and servicing your motorbike then, you put yourself at great risk with the chain of the bike.
Without proper servicing, the chains of these bikes can break and slap hard against your bare legs. Good riding pants would not stop the chain from slapping hard against your legs, but it would reduce its impact on you as opposed to when it hits your bare legs.
Lastly, during a collision or any form of a motorcycle accident, your legs have more direct access to the asphalt as there’s nothing in between.
Jeans and other pants might rip and still expose your legs in accident cases but, that would be like some seconds longer before is forced to do so. It sure is better than having direct and unhindered asphalt access to your legs.
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Other clothing that should not be worn while riding a motorcycle
A lot is being said about the right outfit and other protective gears that should be worn when riding a motorcycle but, not so much is being said about what should not be worn or items that should not be used.
Some of these seemingly harmless items that we put on can, unknown to us, endanger our lives while riding a bike. Let’s look at a few of these clothing and other items below:
We begin the list with this item because of how common the trend has become making it easy for a lot of us to relate with.
Even though it sounds like a cool thing to cruise with your bike with sweet, good music blasting in your ears, we insist that safety should come first and should be your foremost priority.
Do you know that the use of headphones while riding a motorcycle is an illegal act in most states? This is singular because of the great danger it poses not just to you the rider but, to other road users as well.
Headphones makes you partially oblivious to what is going on around you, because it blocks your hearing thereby, causing you to miss important alerts, verbal warnings, and approaching vehicles.
Music while riding is cool. But then, listen to it the safe way; get a helmet with a Bluetooth headset or, install a stereo system on your bike.
Any form of boots that are not specifically made for motorcycle riding should be avoided. Boots like engineering boots, work, or rain boots should not be considered at all. They cannot grant you any form of protection for your feet in accident cases. Invest instead in the right boots.
A backpack isn’t really a problem but a heavy one is. It is very uncomfortable & poses a risk of you being hit by any of the heavy items contained there. Your backpack should be lightweight, containing just the necessary items you might need.
A lot of people consider this to be irrational but, it actually is. Dark clothing makes you partially invisible to other road users and that is not such a good thing especially when you are out riding at night. Wear something bright to enable you to stay visible.
This is yet another instance where you need to uphold safety over style. Wallet chains no doubt look cool and adds to your style but, they pose a great risk as you ride a motorcycle.
Imagine them getting stuck on something? There’s a possibility that you might get hurt and, that’s if it does not lead to something serious like an accident.
We often wonder why these are called helmets in the first place when they do not offer full coverage for your head. Half helmets cover just the top half of your head.
Why then do riders bother wearing them, you might ask? A lot of riders find it easier to see and more comfortable in general.
But what happens to the surrounding areas of your head that the helmet does not cover? It is being exposed to great risk, especially in cases of accidents.
According to various research; During accidents, you are most likely to collide using your chin area. Do not leave yourself to chance. Always put on the full helmet whenever you go riding.
Wearing a scarf might be cool but, think about what happens when it gets loosened by the wind. The kind of distraction it will be for you, flapping around your face and obstructing your view.
Another scenario would be it flying off to land on the windshield of other motorists or just getting stuck on something on your bike. All these are very unpleasant and dangerous instances that can be avoided if you leave your scarves at home.
We advise against loose clothing for the same reasons as scarves. You do not want them distracting you as they flap around or, get stuck somewhere. It is for this reason that you find appropriate wears for riders made with leather with a very snug fit.
You stand the risk of getting expired helmets when you buy a used one. This is strongly not advised as you will have no idea of how it was used before if it has expired, or been in an accident.
All these are factors that would greatly determine the efficacy of the helmets.
While you might think that getting these second-hand helmets would be cheaper for you, considering the pros and cons, you can see now that, it isn’t. Choose safety, go for brand new helmets when riding.
Shorts and sandals
These two are joined together as people would naturally want to go for equally casual footwear like sandals when wearing shorts.
Both leave you exposed to burns from the motorcycle’s hot engine and exhaust pipes. The more covered you are, the lesser the impact of the burns.
Important safety items for bike riding
Protects your head to a large extent in cases of accidents.
Keeps rider warm, and protects the upper region from elements and injury during a collision.
Gloves improve your grip as well as protect your hands from injury too.
Helps in supporting the ankles and protects your feet from injury, unlike normal shoes that might fall off during an accident.
Keeps your eyes protected from dust and other debris as you ride.
Proper dress code for riding on a bike
A lot of people must have gotten so used to wearing regular clothes while riding a motorcycle that they forget that there is indeed appropriate attire for it.
For those who would like to ride a motorcycle safely as it should be, there is a need to get geared up the right way.
One of the best pants to wear while riding is the Kevlar. They offer protection from debris and are produced in such a way that it reduces the impact of an accident on you.
There are leather or other synthetic pants specifically made for riding too.
While these appropriate gear might not save you from broken bones, they would to a great extent, reduce the impact of any experience of asphalt on your bare skin.
Riding a motorcycle might seem fun and a cool thing to do but, you must guarantee your safety first as well as the safety of other road users.
This issue is tricky as people are more inclined to wear shorts when the weather is hot, unknown to them that, the motorcycle’s engine gets even hotter too during this season leaving them at the risk of being burnt.
Go for well-ventilated proper riding gears instead so, you do not get tempted to wear shorts because of the heat.