If you’re familiar with electric unicycling, then you know how much fun and excitement can come from it! However, you also acknowledge the severe risk of injuries. Electric unicyclists may get seriously injured by falling on the unforgiving asphalt. The best way to avoid these possible headaches and damages is to wear the proper protective gear! If you want to be as safe as possible, the second you buy your first electric unicycle you’ll buy protective equipment as well. Please, do not leave your local store or even the online shop without a helmet, knee pads, elbow pads, and if you’re extra cautious, gloves!
These are my top picks for you + Purchase Links:
- Best Helmet:
- Best Gloves:
- Best Hoodie:
- Best Knee pads:
- Best Elbow pads:
Why do we need protective gear while riding an electric unicycle?
Electric unicycle accidents happen all the time. I’ve flown off of my board several times and obtained serious scrapes and bruises. The reason electric unicycling is so dangerous is that we ride these cycles at very high speeds on the hard asphalt. When we fall, our body is likely to get injured.
You may have some questions like when do these crashes actually occur? How can we avoid these in the first place? I would encourage you to read this list of things people do that increase your risk of an accident:
- Ride beyond your skill level (lose control and fall)
- Ride on improper or irregular surfaces (rails, curbstone, cracks in pavement)
- Ride in rainy conditions (wet and slippery surfaces cause loss of traction)
- Go too fast (downhill or too much throttle)
- Run into cars, bikes, pedestrians, skaters, or other cyclists
- The remote control disconnects
- Regenerative braking stops working on some boards if the battery is fully charged
Most common injuries
Since electric unicycling is only just starting to draw attention to itself in the mainstream public, we haven’t collected enough data to surely say which are the most common injuries. However, we have 3 types of sports that are very related to electric unicycling and these are: cycling and unicycling.
The most common injuries among cyclists and unicyclists are:
- Scrapes and bruises (falling with speed on hard pavement leads to grazes and contusions)
- Hand, wrist, or shoulder injuries (may occur when cyclists lose their balance and fall on an outstretched arm or leg)
- Head injuries (including concussions, these are the greatest danger to cyclists. these can involve time in a hospital, permanent impairment, and –in extreme cases– even death.
- Ankle and knee injuries are also quite common. They occur when borders have not warmed up their body enough and avoided falls by jumping down from the board.
All of these things can lead to an accident. And that’s why you need to prepare.
(You can read more on this topic at https://www.hindawi.com/journals/emi/2014/924381/)
Best Helmet for Electric Unicycling
The helmet is the quintessential piece of our electric unicycle safety gear. You should never ride without a helmet. The brain is our most important organ. Scrapes, bruises, and broken bones can be very painful but are often healed easily.
However, a concussion or skull fracture may mentally disable you or even take your life. Best case scenario, prepare to spend a lot of time in the hospital and cross your fingers your mental state stays the same.
I cannot stress enough the importance of proper headgear! It will save your life!
Check out my complete guide on the best electric unicycle helmets.
Triple 8 Dual Certified
Complies with U.S. CPSC Safety Standard for Bicycle Helmets for persons age 5 and older as well as ASTM F-1492-08 Safety Standards for skateboarding. Triple 8 put everything they know about helmet technology into this updated version of our timeless helmet shape. This helmet is Dual Certified for biking and skating, and also has a model with the patented MIPS technology low-friction layer to reduce rotational forces caused by angled impacts. The company worked closely with our top riders invert, longboarding, BMX, commuting, and derby to refine the shape, fit and function. MIPS is also available with the triple 8 dual certified helmet.
What is MIPS: A revolutionary new standard in helmet safety. Developed by brain surgeons and scientists to reduce rotational forces during angled impacts to the head.
Bell Super 3R (MIPS)
The Super 3R gives you a half lid combined with a full-face helmet. It has a unique removable chin bar, giving you almost two helmets in one. You can remove and carry the chin bar in a bag during long rides, then lock it into place for that addest boost of confidence for fast rides or on dangerous terrain. The easy, tool-free installation and removal process only takes seconds. The Bell 3R has breakaway screws to ensure that if you take a hard fall, the visor will break away to avoid an outstretching neck. It comes with a goggle guide adjustable visor system and has an integrated breakaway camera mount.
- The Bell Super 3R MIPS has two safety certifications: CE EN1078, CPSC Bicycle
- Price- $209.95 – $325.00 (size dependant)
- Check the current price on Amazon here.
The TSG Pass is one of the most popular full-face helmets on the market today, and can you blame the people for buying it? Not only will you look like a badass, but it is also dual certified and it has shown to be very protective as well. The International Downhill Federation even certified this bad boy as the best downhill longboard helmet available. Despite its full-face design, it has a large field of view so you can see the world you’re flexing on.
What to Look For When Choosing a Helmet
- Safety standards (protection certifications)
- Field of view
- Cooling and air vents
- Sweat liners
- Look and design
Beware, not all helmets are created equal. There are a plethora of helmets and helmet types on the market such as skate, bike, motorcycle, and longboard. During my research, I was surprised to find that many of these helmets are not officially certified! One the one hand, companies may do this to save more money as getting certifications can be expensive. On the other hand, making a proper protective helmet to pass the tests may require manufacturing techniques and can be pricey as well. That means that the majority of helmets on the market don’t offer legit protection!
While there are a ton of helmet options available on the market, I have narrowed it down to a few manageable trustworthy choices. I researched a lot and wrote a comprehensive guide on the electric unicycle helmets and which one to buy.
I think all of these hit the sweet medium between style and comfort.
Properly fitting helmets should meet these criteria:
- Worn flat on your head
- Sits low on your forehead
- Has side straps that form a ‘v’ shape around each ear
- Has a buckle that fastens tightly (there should only be room for two fingers between the strap and your chin)
- Has pads inside that you install or remove so the helmet fits snugly
- Does not move in any direction when you shake your head
It is important to make wearing a helmet a habit whenever riding. Before you know it, it’ll be like buckling your seatbelt in the car – second nature.
Best Gloves and Wrist Guards for Electric Unicycling
When we fall off our electric unicycles, our instincts tell us to stretch out our arms to absorb the impact and protect our beautiful faces. Hence, our hands, wrists, and forearms will likely take a beating, but hurting and cutting our hands gets old real fast. We need our hands constantly to use our phones, do the dishes, or any other handiwork (see what I did there?) and injured palms will slow that down. Therefore, we should guard our precious appendages when going out for a ride. The best way to protect our hands is with gloves and wrist guards.
Pro E-Skate Gloves Fingerless
These gloves are specifically designed for e-cycling. In my opinion, the Pro E-skate gloves from flatland3d and Knox offer great protection. Flatland3d is a company that is committed to electric skating and cycling accessories. Knox has a pretty long history of producing protective gloves, and now they have teamed up and designed a glove especially for e-cyclists. These gloves have the special Knox patented Scaphoid (wrist bone which breaks most of the time) Protection System (SPS) built in to protect your hand and wrist by adding two sliders to the palm of the glove. Additionally, the company has added a new one-directional flexible wrist plate. It’s flexible in the forward direction for comfort, but rigid in the other direction to prevent hyperextension. The Fingerless Pro E-skate gloves have free fingertips and are designed for riders who have protection and sensitivity at the same time. And, they have a terry cloth thumb panel to wipe your helmet visor! You can get them on flatland3d’s website.
- Price: $65
- Link to Website: flatland3d.com
- Use the coupon code “E-SKATEBOARDER” to get 10% off flatland3d products!
Demon Flexmeter Wrist Guard
Rated four stars on Amazon, the Demon Flex M Wrist Guard is a great starting point for safety gear for anyone just starting out or even experienced riders. It is lightweight and flexible, unlike other rigid designs, and it fits comfortably under the glove. There is a moderate level of protection, and the reviews mostly state successful protection during falls. It is reported to be comfortable, flexible, and protective. Check out the price on Amazon.
How to Choose Electric Unicycle Gloves
- Level of protection
Any quality pair of gloves or wrist guards will slide on the asphalt if you take a spill. This will convert most of the impact energy into a controlled slide, therefore relieving your hands and wrists of a very painful endeavor. Look out for plastic caps and parts on the glove or wrist guards for sliding!
Best Armored Hoodie for Electric Unicycling
When riding, the possibility of a fall is always there. It’s important to protect your torso during your ride, hence the armored hoodie. When looking for an armored hoodie, it is important to keep in mind:
Lazyrolling Armored Hoodie
The Lazyrolling armored hoodie is the perfect way to protect your torso from scratches and bruises. With comfort in mind, the hoodie has a relaxed fit while being very well protected. Underneath the basic outer layer, the inner lining is 100% full DuPont Kevlar. The cloth is specifically designed to be comfortable through a wide range of movements. The Hoodie incorporates 5 padded areas in a sleek, low profile design. With inner partitions at elbows, shoulders and back, made for our certified Level CE 1 pads and back protection.
There are waterproof pockets for your phone, keys, and any other items you may have. In addition, there are zippers creating an airflow system for temperature regulation. The hoodie itself is not cheap compared to a normal hoodie, but when you look at the value of the protection it’s quite affordable. There are a few add-on packages if you’re looking to be as careful as possible. It also comes in a large array of sizes, and two pleasant shades of black and grey. If you fall with this hoodie on, you’ll hit the street back on impact. Disclaimer: Due to increasing demand and the Pandemic shipping times will probably be longer than usual. For more info check out Lazyrolling’s estimated time of arrival (ETA) page.
Best Knee and Elbow Pads of Electric Unicycling
Think about the last time you took a nasty fall. You probably fell onto your hands and knees, right? Proper knee pads can save us some of this pain. Furthermore, we often roll after a fall, therefore making elbow protection a pretty good call to make. In my experience, the bigger the pads the better, but while we want good protection, these pads should not get too bulky or riding may become impossible. I did some research, and the best ones are as follows.
187 Killer Pads Pro Knee Pads
The company 187 Killer Pads has been producing pads for professional skaters for the past decade. Started by a long-time skater in a family-owned shop, 187 Killer Pads has since become a reputable choice of skaters, cyclists, and e-cyclists alike.
187 Killer Pads Pro Elbow Pads
These pads were designed to offer the highest level of elbow protection. The pads surround the elbow offering cushioning while still providing maximum comfort. The pads have extremely thick padding, which proves useful against impact protection and gives you maximum range of motion to pump your fist in the air after that sick move, bro.
What to Look for When Choosing Knee and Elbow Pads
- Softshell or hardshell
- Sizing and fit
- Quality – brand reputation
- Cooling and sweat liners
- Look and design
The most essential point when deciding on knee and elbow pads for electric unicycling is their level of protection and their slide ability. When we fly off of our cycles, we want to have a controlled slide on the asphalt in order to distribute our fall to be less harmful. Make sure to get pads with big and durable plastic caps.
With padded shorts, you can try skating at the fullest without worrying about upper leg injuries. If you’re planning on living life to the maximum with that throttle, you’d better pad up to protect yourself.
The Triple 8 Bumsaver is crafted with soft and breathable mesh fabric and is flexible and comfortable. It’s non-restrictive as well as breathable allowing you to sweat through with no issue. You can remove the pads for easy washing, to avoid smelling like a loser.
If you want to ride your electric unicycle in the dark, lights are imperative. It is extremely unsafe to ride without lights! (Unless you’re one of those genetically modified catgirls. You can probably see in the dark then.)
Head and Tail Lights
The best head and tail lights for electric unicycling are the Shred Lights SL-200. They’re radiant, easy to install and remove, water-resistant, shock and vibration proof, and (and this is the best part) are available for a fair price. You can check them out at Shredlight’s Website.
Turn Signal Widget
What if you already have your favorite backpack? Well then, check out this widget! As bright and useful as the previous one, this widget comes with a wireless controller you can attach to your bar. Since it’s flexible and thin, you can attach it anywhere.
Another handy safety item is a reflective LED vest. The big advantage is that cars and other traffic members can see you clearly during the night time. Reflective LED vests are made with runners in mind but are perfect for your electric unicycling needs. E-cycles have a general vertical visual area, and lights on our cycles can help us see, but the vest helps us to be seen! These vests offer 360 degrees of visibility using multi-color optic LED lights. Some of them even have cool color changing and flashing patterns!
Generally, these vests take 3 AAA batteries and last up to 40 hours. In addition, reflective materials and detailing can improve the visibility of your vest. The vest is weather and sweatproof, and its minimal design can be worn over t-shirts or heavier clothing. Check the price on Amazon.
The Lumos helmet has white LEDs on the front side and red LEDs on the backside. It will increase your visibility and in turn your safety for every ride. The helmet has a built-in speed gauge that can detect acceleration and braking. If the accelerometer detects braking, the red backlight on your helmet will glow brighter. You can even indicate your turns with blinking arrows on the helmet. Customers seem to love this helmet. You can check it out here on Amazon.
Moreover, there is another very useful option to increase your vertical visibility. Attach LED armbands or even leg bands to your body to improve your visibility. They’re available in all sorts of colors and sizes and are affordable. The armband that people like the most on Amazon is this one.
How to Get Us to Wear Protective Gear When Riding Electric Unicycles
It’s important for us to develop a habit of wearing our helmets when riding. It frustrates me seeing kids on their bikes, scooters or skateboards with their helmet tucked under their arm. While I have to admit I have forgotten to wear my helmet a few times and sometimes I even question if I really need a helmet or any protective gear at all I am quickly reminded of the purpose of this gear when I see someone fall or even fall over myself.
The same way we wear all of our snow gear when snowboarding or skiing, we should gear up before each ride. We have to embed that mentality to ourselves. We should wear our protective gear from the beginning of each ride. There should be no such thing as cycling without a helmet. It’s also important that we stop portraying unsafe riding behaviors in the media. I’m looking at you Casey Neistat Mr. I Don’t Need A Helmet!
If we can implant this mindset in ourselves and our kids when it comes to any and all riding, it will become second nature to wear a helmet as simply as we buckle our seat belts in the car.
In conclusion, there are a million options out there for protective gear and while variety can be nice, it can be hard to narrow down the best choices. These are all the safest, most comfortable pieces of safety equipment you can purchase for your electric unicycling hobby. I hope you guys continue to practice safe protective behaviors when practicing that sweet electric unicycle. Be safe, and ride on!