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Sell me on the Leatt Brace

Discussion in 'Downhill & Freeride' started by DirtMcGirk, May 4, 2012.

  1. DirtMcGirk

    DirtMcGirk <b>WAY</b> Dumber than N8 (to the power of ten alm

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    I'm getting old, and I notice I am not as prone to jump right back out of the dirt after I hit the deck these days.

    In some 15 years of riding DH I've never ridden with one of those there new fangled neck brace do-hick-a-ma-call-its. But my special lady friend keeps talking about how she'd like me to live, not be a quadriplegic, not needing the whole Christoper Reeves treatment.

    But here's the thing, I've lawn darted many times. I've landed on my head, ass, shoulders, nut sack and so on, and while I do wear a full face, and sometimes I will wear full upper armor, I am just not a huge fan of padding.

    Do the braces encumber things like spotting landings, or being able to be flexible/mobile on the bike? What are the downsides to these things?
     
    #1 -   May 4, 2012

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  2. gonefirefightin

    gonefirefightin free wieners

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    I am not even sure they make one to fit around your neck and chins
     
    #2 -   May 4, 2012
  3. DirtMcGirk

    DirtMcGirk <b>WAY</b> Dumber than N8 (to the power of ten alm

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    Chins are going away, but I've got a thick neck from OCS.
     
    #3 -   May 4, 2012
  4. Freeridin'

    Freeridin' Monkey

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    For me, a Leatt is the least noticeable piece of protective equipment I can put on my body...my knee pads are more noticeable than the Leatt.

    But in the end, the only way you can tell if it'll work for you is to try one on and ride.
     
    #4 -   May 4, 2012
    Last edited: May 4, 2012
  5. Whoops

    Whoops Turbo Monkey

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    This. I'm also old, and fragile, and crash-tastic.
     
    #5 -   May 4, 2012
  6. 4xBoy

    4xBoy Turbo Monkey

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    I really don't know why I don't have one, other then I'm cheap at times., I want one for riding motorcycles.
     
    #6 -   May 4, 2012
  7. Kevin

    Kevin Turbo Monkey

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    I did a parking lot test on one and that was enough reason for me not to buy one.
    Its different for different people I think cause plenty of my riding buddies have one....
     
    #7 -   May 4, 2012
  8. milohead

    milohead Monkey

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    I wore one a buddies once for 5 minutes (on a trail at Windrock) and it was surprisingly comfortable. Considering the prices of components and the fact I have no problem spending money, I really have no excuse why that hasn't been a purchase for me these last 2 years.
     
    #8 -   May 4, 2012
  9. Optimax150

    Optimax150 Monkey

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    There was a thread about this in pinkbike. One thing I read is a alpinestar is lower, doesn't extend up much. But I would guess you would lose a little bit of protection.
    My trails doesn't really call for it, but there is those few trails. I myself is thinking about getting one.
     
    #9 -   May 4, 2012
  10. Straya

    Straya Monkey

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    It might mean you have to hold your own dick and wipe your own arse for the rest of your life?
     
  11. insanitylevel9

    insanitylevel9 triple nubby

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    i felt liked i crash more with mine on for a while, but i think i got it dialed in now so i will let you know monday. im kinda dead on the fence about having one
     
  12. EastCoaster

    EastCoaster Monkey

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    Which is why I went with an EVS R4...(not for the moto part, but because of the $$$). As much as protection should be the #1 priority, other things are always needed. The $300+ for a Leatt would've probably kept getting pushed back. So, I felt better at least riding with something. And, the press on the EVS is positive. Plus more freedom of movement.
     
  13. motomike

    motomike Turbo Monkey

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    My Leatt drives me nuts. It fits just fine, stays where it should etc. But anytime I ride on super steep trails, or jump trails with big berms where I'm turning my head around to look out of the turn, it rubs my helmet and screws up my mojo. I think this year I'll be going with a moto helmet/no leatt combo because I care more about protecting my brain that my neck. Seems like quite a few other people have done this as well... Anybody notice that?
     
  14. nowlan

    nowlan Monkey

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    Mine saved my neck for sure in a pretty horrible crash 2 years ago. I wear it based on that. In the super steep ****, it is noticible for sure, and in long big berms. You know its there, it takes time to get used to but I like to think its worth it.
    However, about 3 weeks ago I had a pretty stupid crash. Got bucked off a jump and landed shoulder first into some soft dirt. The clip on the Leatte drove into my collar bone and im very surprised I didnt break it, bruised the bone really bad and is still painful. It really got me thinking. Also, Its funny you see alot of people that used to wear them stop wearing them after a while.
     
  15. Kntr

    Kntr Turbo Monkey

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    I noticed the exact same thing. My buddies tried to tell me it was the helmet.

    I tried it for a few weeks and couldn't get use to it. I felt like I couldn't move and would not be able to tuck and roll if I went over the bars. Not for me.
     
  16. EastCoaster

    EastCoaster Monkey

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    So you'll be able to think clearly to properly blow into the straw to control your chair... I get it....

    I have a friend who currently has the desire for some sort of neck protection. But, had the same issues that you brought up. Took some runs with a borrowed Leatt AND the EVS R4 and he felt that he wasn't going to be able to take not being able to look up/down the trail when generally going downhill and especially in the steeps. Granted the borrowed Leatt wasn't set up for him.... but, he went the exact route that you mentioned. The extra protection of a moto and no brace.
     
    #16 -   May 4, 2012
    Last edited: May 4, 2012
  17. Udi

    Udi RM Chief Ornithologist: “I Brake for Birds”

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    Which Leatt do you have?
    The Alpinestars brace is less restrictive, and might be worth trying if you can borrow one. The new Leatt GPX Pro / DBX Pro braces are also lower in profile and less restrictive than the previous models set at their lowest height.

    If it doesn't work, it doesn't work, but can't hurt to try if you have access to them.
     
  18. motomike

    motomike Turbo Monkey

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    I have the gpx club. All I was trying to say is that I'm just far more concerned about concussions than anything else.
     
  19. kickstand

    kickstand Turbo Monkey

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    I have a leatt, ridden it with a moto and a bike helmet, I don't even remember I am wearing it except on chairlifts where I have to carry my bike with me, otherwise it doesn't ever bother me.

    I have a thin build at 5-10/11 and 175-185 depending on my current conditioning....I would say my neck is of average length

    No major crashes with it on yet, I;ve always been a good tucknroller from growing up as a barefoot waterskier, so I was never really seriously hurt before owning the leatt.

    Since I barely notice I have it on, I wear it. It gives me some peice of mind.
     
  20. rdompor

    rdompor Chimp

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    Way before Leatt came on the scene, I used an EVS RC1 race collar when riding MX. This was the thick, clunky neck roll that came out before the slimmer RC2's rolled out. This thing was way thicker than my Leatt, but I rode and raced with it and it didn't bother me. I think that the Leatt's are great.
     
  21. chup29

    chup29 Chimp

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    love my leatt - i usually ride really steep gnarly stuff here in CO and still some really steep stuff, but its usually mellower back home in OR. for me it feels weird to ride my dh with a full face and not have it on - when you start riding with it, it will definitely feel weird - i noticed the little taps it did on the back of my helmet for the really steep stuff. Eventually i got used to it, it doesnt hinder my vision in any way and now that ive gotten used to the way it connects with my helmet when i ride really steep sustained trails, its nice to have a little place to rest my helmet on. With that being said, i know plenty of people who just cant get the fit/feel right, so its definitely a thing you have to try out to make sure its really what you want. Lots of my friends who didnt like the leatt went to the alpinestars brace and liked that, if your a bigger dude with a thick neck/shoulders - thats probably going to be your best bet as they make a small, medium and a large size. Those 2 options seem like the best bets, just dont get the moto one that makes you look like your wearing football pads everywhere, and maybe a moto helmet would be a smart choice as well, i know they are compatible with the dbx pro's super low tables and the alpinestars as well - OH more things, the straps give everyone man tits, so i usually only recommend that chicks wear them and by far the most annoying thing about Leatts is that they make it hard to talk to your buddys when your sitting down and cruising along a fire road to the next trail, turning your head sideways when your upright is straight up annoying but zero vision issues when actually riding
     
  22. TheMontashu

    TheMontashu Pourly Tatteued Jeu

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    It took me probably 3 rides with all the spare parts mid mountain, and adjusting my brace at northstar to get it to sit how I wanted too. Now that I've got the thing positioned right I hardly notice it at all, unless as was mention, I'm pushing my bike. Sure I can't look all the way up or down, and I can't look behind me well, but it's never been an issue, as I don't ride backwards or upside down.

    I've also found that the brace really squares up my shoulders, one of my problems with riding used to be later in the day I would start to slouch a bit and my position on the bike would start to deteriorate. But with the leatte I stay in a nice "attack" position all day.

    And I'm going to point these 2 things out. A leatte is cheaper than a lifetime supply of diapers, and if you're lucky enough to find a hot chick to change them, your dick wont even have any feeling left
     
  23. bdamschen

    bdamschen Turbo Monkey

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    I rock one... sometimes. Since I got mine I've broken two bones and fractured one (vs. none before) and had two crashes that resulted in a lawn dart to the face (vs nothing but some wicked tuck and rolls before). Of course correlation doesn't equal causation, but I do feel like I can't tuck and roll the way I used to be able to. I also feel like I'm putting down slow times when I wear it and hauling ass when I don't.

    I'll keep wearing mine though, because I'd feel pretty dumb if I put myself in a wheel chair because I was trying to podium rather than finish mid pack in a 30-34 year old cat 1 race that I do for fun on the weekends.
     
  24. ruralrider

    ruralrider Chimp

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    When I got mine I brought the box with all of the different sized pins and the spare parts. I didnt like the brace at all at first. When I got it set up correctly with my body armor and neck I barely noticed it was even there. You will probably not like it the first couple of rides but once it is set up you will become comfortable with it.
     
  25. MinorThreat

    MinorThreat Turbo Monkey

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    As am I. I want to keep racing until I'm at least 60 and my wife doesn't want to be a home health care provider, so I wear one.

    Once I got mine adjusted right, it disappeared. I have the Moto GPX Club and run the nuts flipped and all that and it does not interfere with anything.
     
  26. WestCoastHucker

    WestCoastHucker Turbo Monkey

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    i'm pretty sure that the pack of hotdogs on the back of your neck is all the protection it will need...
     
  27. NoUseForAName

    NoUseForAName Monkey

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    It came down to this for me:

    It wasn't awkward enough to make me not wear it, and i could afford it.

    Those are the two consistent 'issues' that people cite as reasons not to have a neck brace.

    I don't know the science - i don't think any one really does - despite what they claim. But i buy lottery tickets any way.
     
  28. sundaydoug

    sundaydoug Monkey

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    I wore my Leatt for the first time yesterday while I was doing some lift runs. I used the straps and really only noticed it once or twice in 6 or 7 runs. It really is much more comfortable and less noticeable than I was expecting.

    To each their own, but a neck brace could be one of the best investments you could make for riding.
     
  29. MrPlow

    MrPlow Monkey

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    I have a riend who is now a paraplegic. He can barely move his arms either. If he had a neck brace on it might have at least made the difference between being able to move his arms. He made me promise to get one. I didn't argue.
    Part of the reason making my bikes is going so slow is we are busy making a carbon 4wd chair for him.
     
  30. SkullCrack

    SkullCrack Monkey

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  31. amishmatt

    amishmatt Turbo Monkey

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    That'd be me. I tried the Leatt (and adjusted it every possible way, btw), the Alpinestars and the EVS. They all restricted me more than I could tolerate. A run with the Leatt was the tightest/stiffest/slowest/least relaxed run I've ever had - just couldn't ride normal. I was so focused on not being able to get my head back enough to see that I rode like complete ****, and by the end of one run my neck and shoulders hurt. I'm chalking it up to my XXL moto helmet, because practically everyone else I ride with wears a Leatt with no problems.
     
  32. 4xBoy

    4xBoy Turbo Monkey

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    Drink more beer, if your neck gets fat enough it will be like having a brace.