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ATV Gear Checklist: Don’t Ride Without These Safety Essentials

posted by Chris Valentine

So, you’re going to ride an ATV and you want to make sure you have all of the right equipment needed to do so safely.

Even if you’re not a new rider, it’s wise to prepare for the worst, so you can help reduce your chances of injury. It’s also important to remember that no rider ever plans to wreck their ATV, but accidents do happen.

That being said, you shouldn’t let the fear of getting hurt dissuade you from riding an ATV. As long as you wear all the right equipment, and do so properly, you can focus on having a good time and not worry about getting hurt.

In this article, we’ll tell you about all the various ATV gear that you need to have before stepping foot on an ATV, so you or your young one can be as safe as possible.

Now then, let’s get started!

A Helmet

Without a doubt, the most important piece of protection that you can wear while riding an ATV is a helmet. With that being said, it can’t be just any kind of helmet.

You’ll need to purchase or rent an official ATV-style helmet. Also, picking a helmet that fits properly is just as important as the type of helmet you choose.

But how do you know if a helmet fits properly? Well, a helmet shouldn’t move much, or at all, on the rider’s head. It’s a good idea to have someone at the store help you fit your ATV helmet if you’re a newer rider.

A Neck Brace

The next most important piece of protective equipment that you can wear while riding an ATV is a neck brace. Neck braces protect a rider during an accident and can help prevent serious injury to the neck or spine.

Neck braces that are available today are pretty low profile and don’t restrict the rider’s movements at all, which is a nice bonus. So if you’re worried about looking silly, or not being able to move well while riding, don’t be.

Goggles

Even if the place you choose to ride isn’t all that muddy or dirty, it’s important to wear proper eyeglasses that protect you from sustaining eye damage. With all of the dirt, grass, and other elements flying through the air while you ride, your eyes are at high risk of damage without eyewear.

Also, if something gets in your eye and restricts your vision, you increase your chances of wrecking and sustaining an injury. Goggles are often sold in a bundle with helmets, so it’s not difficult to find a pair that works with your helmet setup.

A Vest

Vests, or chest protectors, are especially important when riding ATVs.  Remember, ATVs can weigh hundreds of pounds. So if you wreck and the vehicle falls on top of you, you’ll want to guard your internal organs with a chest protector.

Like everything on this list, it’s recommended that all riders wear chest protectors. However, children especially should take extra care in protecting themselves, since they’re not as fully developed or prepared physically to sustain a crash.

Gloves

Gloves might not seem like a big deal but can actually prevent you from suffering from some of the more common ATV injuries. For instance, ATVs, like other motor vehicles, get hot when they run. So if you touch the wrong part of the ATV, you can seriously burn your hands.

Also, the gloves help you grip the handlebars easier, and most provide knuckle protection, too. So if you hit a bump, the top part of your hands will be protected from the handlebars, which can actually break your hand or knuckles without the right kind of gloves.

Pants

Like gloves, pants help to protect you. First, if you crash, pants cover up more of your skin than shorts. They also keep you from burning yourself on the ATV, as the vehicle itself will get quite hot once it’s been running for more than a few minutes.

Padded ATV pants, which aren’t required but are recommended, can help protect your knees, thighs, and hips during a crash. Again, if you’re a younger rider, it’s a good idea that you wear these padded ATV pants to ensure that you’re as protected as possible in case of a crash.

Boots

One of the areas people are most likely to skimp on equipment is in the shoe department. Newer riders often think they can wear a typical tennis shoe and be well protected while riding their ATV.

That’s simply not the case. 

ATV boots give you ankle and shin support and protect you from being burned during the ride. They also often allow for you to easily tuck in your laces, so you don’t have to worry about getting those laces caught in the various levers found near the foot of an ATV.

Hauling Gear

Last but not least, it’s important to safely haul your ATV if you plan on taking it various places to ride. If you store your ATV in the area where you’re riding, this isn’t important. But if you’re going on the road, you want to make sure you tow your ATV safely and legally.

Depending on what kind of ATV you have, and the vehicle you’re using to tow, you’ll need different kinds of equipment. You can learn more online about how to haul an ATV safely so you don’t cause an accident on the roadways doing so improperly.

Well, there you have it! Those are the must-have pieces of ATV gear that you need to have before you step foot on an ATV.

Remember, all riders should be as protected as possible. This is especially true for children, however, so it’s a good idea not to skip out on any pieces of equipment when dressing a younger rider.

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