Glad you got to this page because protective gear is very important. Fortunately, protective gear for kids is widely available and has improved greatly over the years. The most important thing is that it stays in place and fits properly. Cheap gear often moves around and doesn’t have tubes that fit around arms and legs. Avoid those because it’s just a waste of money and hardly offers any protection.
I’ve selected a few affordable options that won’t shift easily and can take an impact. You can either go for the cheaper Pro-tec set or the slightly more expensive 187 set but the best set is definitely made by TSG.
Don’t forget the most important piece of protective gear, a quality helmet. I wouldn’t spend too much on knee, wrist, and elbow pads but don’t cheap out on helmets.
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Pro-tec Junior 3-Pack
Kids don’t weigh much, so there’s no need for heavy-duty protection unless your kid is a pro. Just the standard Pro-Tec junior 3-pack (Amazon link) is good enough for kids aged 5 to 9-10.
What I like about these pads is that they stay in place (most of the time) and can handle impacts. Shifting often causes abrasions and the cheaper sets all have this issue. The Velcro straps and buckle (knee pads) allow you to adjust the pads’ tightness.
Try to avoid the Velcro strips from getting stuck on the fabric and wash them by hand. Make sure to fit the wrist guards properly, the hard plastic protector should be placed on the bottom of the wrist, NOT on top.
The set is for kids between the age of five and ten but if your kid is almost 10 or taller/bigger than average, you might want to get the medium size (Amazon). The Pro-tec combo pack saves you quite some money, buying everything separately is expensive.
A cheaper alternative to consider is the JBM set (affiliate link to Amazon).
Don’t Forget About a Helmet
There are three options here depending on your budget, but a cheap helmet is better than none. First I’ll cover the one that my kid uses, the Triple Eight Dual Certified Helmet (link to Amazon). It still looks great because thankfully he never hit his head before. There are also versions with chin protection but just make sure it fits properly.
Kids under the age of 10 are more likely to hit their head and I don’t want to take any risks. We got the Mike Vallely version, it’s an old pro skater who started a campaign “get used to it” to promote helmets. It’s probably one of the best helmets you can get.
It’s very lightweight, looks great and fits my 7-year old just fine. There’s even room left so I probably don’t have to get a new one next year. The back offers a lot of protection and the buckle is easy to adjust. This helmet is CPSC 1203, ASTM 1492/1447 certified, which means you can use it for BMX, skateboarding and just cycling in general.
To determine the right size measure with a soft measuring tape or string. My son is wearing the XS-S version.
|XS-S||18.9 – 21.25 in (48 – 54 cm),|
|S-M||21.5 – 22.75 in (55 – 58 cm),|
|L-XL||23.25 – 24 in (59 – 61 cm)|
Here’s a shot from behind which shows that the back of the head is fully covered.
Update: The Best Helmet (TSG)
I guess it’s time to update this page because the past 2 years flew by and we tested lots of new gear. TSG comes out on top because of the comfort and fit. The helmet doesn’t move around at all and my son says it feels way more comfortable than the Triple 8 helmet.
You get extra padding to make it fit properly which you can remove when your kid gets bigger. Seriously a helmet to consider when you want the best stuff.
It’s not just the helmet that’s great. TSG offers a combo pack including knee pads, elbow pads, and wrist guards. Same story, better fit and after crashing they will stay in place.
Recently we did some ‘downhill’ just for fun and my son had to bail because he was going too fast. Good thing he was wearing full protective gear! He tumbled and landed on his knees and wrist guards. They absorbed the impact perfectly and he just slid forward.
I expected him to break down and cry but he looked up and smiled. ‘Don’t worry dad, I didn’t feel a thing’. Glad I got him new gear, not sure if the Protec stuff would have stayed in place to be honest since he’s gotten bigger.
The reason he had to bail was because he wasn’t standing properly on his board, it caused his board to twitch. It happens, but quality gear keeps kids safe and motivated.
187 Junior Six Pack
If you want something more reliable, consider the brand 187. They make some of the best protective gear but are slightly more expensive than Pro-tec. They’re suitable for kids between four and eight years old, weighing 40-60 pounds. The elbow and knee pads also come with tubes that keeps them in place when your kid is riding a skateboard. You can check for prices on Amazon.
Other Helmet Options
Probably the most important piece of protective gear is a helmet, the downside is that they cost almost as much as a skateboard. One of the best you can get on Amazon for your kid is the Pro-Tec Certified junior helmet. It’s a great looking helmet, offers all the needed protection and certified. If you want something less expensive check out the JBM multi-sport helmet (link to Amazon).
Make sure your kid is careful with a helmet. Even though they can take multiple impacts, it’s advised not to throw them around. Minor fractions can compromise the integrity of a helmet so store them properly and handle them with care.