Top Knee Pads Under Review
Around one-third of all skiing / snowboarding injuries transpire at the knee, with the most common injury being MCL, which is short for the Medial Collateral Ligament. And while the rate of injuries to the knee has remained unwavering for the past 25 years or so, we’re witnessing a glaring rise in knee ligament ruptures, especially the Anterior Cruciate Ligament.
Fortunately, it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg to shelter the knees from such dramatic mishaps. A pair of high-quality knee pads can go a long way towards preventing injury. It can, however, be quite challenging to find a pair of quality knee pads, especially with the endless deluge of products on the market, which is why in this article, we’ll help narrow down your choices to just 5 high-quality products.
We start off our list with the highly-popular Demon Hyper X D30 knee pads from Demon United. This pair of knee pads isn’t only designed to provide ideal protection, but also to provide the user with a great deal of comfort. The abrasion-resistant Kevlar front is by far one of the best and most durable knee-pad fronts that you can find on the market today.
This knee pad features high-grade D30 construction for optimal protection. Not only that, but it’s also backed by foam padding for ideal comfort. It’s worth noting that this knee pad is granted the CE 1621-1 certification for limb pads and motorcycle knee, which solidifies its high quality. You’ll also be impressed by how breathable it is, thanks to the use of neoprene.
To add to its durability, this knee pad boasts double stitching throughout its construction, making it one of the most hard-wearing knee pads on the market. You’ll also notice that the pad features a form-fitting design, which adds to the comfort factor. Moreover, the interior is made of soft terry cloth for increased comfort. The pad is also equipped with loop straps and a dual hook.
If you’re interested in buying the Demon Hyper X, it’s important to keep in mind that these pads run on the smaller side, which means that you should consider sizing up if you want a perfect fit. And while the pad features adjustable double Velcro straps, you’ll find no luck getting the right fit if it’s not the right size. All things considered, the Demon Hyper X is great for high-impact sports.
Things we like:
- Highly resistant to impact and extremely comfortable
- The use of neoprene grants it remarkable breathability
- Features adjustable Velcro straps for getting a great fit
- Has a form-fitting design for a snug and comfortable fit
Things we don’t:
- Pulling pant legs over them can be quite the challenge
- Not the most affordable pair of knee pads on the market
The Bucwild Sports Knee Pads are made of a combination of spandex and polyester that offer a stretchy fit for ideal comfort. This pair is also extremely lightweight and features a slim profile for easier wearing. They also feature moisture-wicking technology, allowing them to keep your knee dry and cool. Not to mention that they’re highly breathable as well.
The great thing about the Bucwild Sports Knee Pads is that they’re great for just about any sport you can think of, from basketball, baseball, and wrestling to golf, cycling, and skating. This knee pad comes equipped with 10mm worth of EVA foam padding, which is around 2mm thicker than most other brands on the market, but without restricting your mobility.
The Bucwild Sports Knee Pads eliminate all of the guesswork when it comes to sizing. All of the sizes are optimized for a snug and comfortable compression fit. To find your perfect size, all you need to do is grab a measuring tape and use it to measure around your mid-thigh. Then, take a look at Bucwild’s sizing chart to find the corresponding size to your measurements.
Upon testing the Bucwild Sports Knee Pads, a wide range of positive effects were observed: An increase in blood flow around the knees, thighs, and feet, mild pain relief, reduced soreness, the ability to be used as a rash guard against abrasions and scratches, and protection from UV light without the use of lotions. Simply put, the Bucwild Sports Knee Pads are an all-around winner.
Things we like:
- An ideal pair of knee pads for a wide range of sports
- Features thick EVA foam padding for optimal comfort
- No guesswork is needed whatsoever as far as sizing
- The moisture wicking technology keeps the body dry
Things we don’t:
- While it offers great protection, it’s not the most durable
- They may slide around a little if you’re running around
While this pair of knee pads are designed primarily for work, they’re also great for snowboarding and skiing. As you may expect from a pair of knee pads that are designed for construction work, this is an extremely rugged, heavy-duty pair that provides remarkable protection from abrasions. However, they have a bulky profile, so you need to choose your clothing carefully.
The “thundershield” is made of a heavy-duty, non-slip material that grants it great durability. The pad also features an ergonomic design that offers adequate support for the patellar tendon right underneath the knee and the quadriceps above. Moreover, it features a thick foam core and soft gel core that help provide both great protection and comfort for the user.
The reinforced stitching on this knee pad is nothing less than perfect. It’s truly a knee pad that’s made for long-lasting protection and comfort. Additionally, it features a fully adjustable fastening system that grants the user a snug fit without constricting the knee’s mobility. The package also includes 7-inch extension straps that will help you get the right fit.
One thing you should be mindful of is that the extension straps that come with this knee pad will be fairly short if you’re someone that has large thigh, as they won’t be able to close securely. So if you’re someone with larger thighs, this may not be the right pair of knee pads for you. Overall, this is a pair that will certainly deliver on the protection and comfort aspect no matter the activity.
Things we like:
- One of the most durable pair of knee pads available
- Has foam and gel cores for ideal comfort and safety
- Boasts an adjustable fastening system for great sizing
- Comes with extension straps for a secure and snug fit
Things we don’t:
- The extension straps can be too short for larger thighs
- This product isn’t specifically designed for impact sports
If you’re looking for a pair of highly-affordable, lightweight knee pads that will offer a great deal of protection for your knees, the Bodyprox Protective Knee Pads are your best bet. These knee pads are great for both males and females, thanks to their unisex design. They’re also available in two sizes that will fit most people, namely small/medium and large.
How are these knee pads any different from the rest of the products on this list? For starters, the price tag on this pair of knee pads is a lot more affordable than most products on the market. In addition, this is a knee pad that won’t take up your entire leg, allowing for better mobility. Not to mention that they’re made of flexible fabric, which allows the user to move freely.
Another thing that makes this pair of knee pads great is their no-slip nature. However, they don’t feature Velcro straps. Nevertheless, they’re easy to slip on and do a superb job of clinging to the knee even while running. These knee pads are flexible enough for snowboarding and skiing and lightweight enough for a competitive triathlete.
You should also know that these knee pads aren’t only designed to protect you from impact, but they’re also designed to provide you with pain relief, thanks to their compressive nature. And in terms of comfort, we can sum it all up by saying that you can wear these knee pads all and you won’t feel bothered at all. Definitely the right pick for those seeking low-profile knee pads.
Things we like:
- One of the most affordable knee pads on the market
- Offers a great combination of protection and comfort
- Made of a flexible fabric that allows for great mobility
- They cling nicely to the knees without Velcro straps
Things we don’t:
- Doesn’t provide as much protection as its competition
- Not the longest-lasting pair of knee pads on the market
McDavid is one of the most prominent names when it comes to sports gear, and it wouldn’t be of any sense to not include one of their products on our list. The McDavid 6440 Knee Pads feature Hex Technology, which is basically closed cell foam padding. This technology provides the user with a great deal of protection upon collision. It also adds to the durability of the knee pads.
The great thing about the McDavid 6440 is that they’re not just ideal for the knees, they can also be used as an elbow or shin pads. No matter where they’re used, the super closed cell foaming will make sure that you’re experiencing optimal comfort and protection. We’re also impressed by how versatile and flexible these pads are considering their 9mm padding, which is pretty thick.
The McDavid 6440 Hex Knee Pads feature hDc moisture-management technology which helps keep them cool and dry throughout the day. In addition, it keeps the sleeves odor-less. This pair is also machine washable, so you won’t face any trouble when it comes to keeping them clean. They’re also machine dryable for your convenience.
This pair of knee pads do a great job of keeping the muscles warm. As a result, the chances of cramping and fatigue are significantly reduced, which allows the user to enjoy whatever activity they’re dabbling in with complete confidence. The manufacturer recommends sizing up for ideal comfort if your measurements are high on their sizing chart.
Things we like:
- They can be used as knee, elbow, or shin pads
- Keeps the body cool and dry throughout the day
- Machine washable/dryable for ease of cleaning
- The closed cell foaming offers great protection
Things we don’t:
- Finding the right size can be a little challenging
- Not the best pair for protection against hard impact
Advantages of Wearing Knee Pads
Wearing knee pads provides support for the joints and limits their movement. As a result, it increases stability and prevents injury. Activities such as snowboarding are bound to put significant pressure on the knees, which can result in the mismoving of the knee patella, and that’s something that knee pads can prevent.
While pressure may not be that problematic for a younger person, it can be an issue for an elderly individual that’s into skiing or snowboarding. Wearing a pair of knee pads can alleviate the pressure falling on the knees and reduce the chances of injury.
Catching a cold in your knees is easier than you think, and wearing a pair of knee pads can help keep your knees and muscles warm. Cold can lead to a lot of joint symptoms, which is something that you should try to avoid at all costs.
Disadvantages of Wearing Knee Pads
This is a minor downside when compared to the huge safety advantage of actually wearing the pads.
Again another minor downside but something to near in mind when making your purchase. Try to look for pads that are breathable and will not cause discomfort due to heat ans sweat.
Things to Consider Before Buying Knee Pads
Before heading out to buy a new pair of knee pads, there are some factors that you need to take into consideration if you want to get the best bang for your buck. These factors are:
Generally, the padding of a knee pad is the area between its soft inner lining and its outer shell. Padding is the most important protective aspect in most knee pads, which means that if you’re a skiing/snowboarding beginner, you want to buy a pair of knee pads that have great padding. Most knee pads will boast padding materials such as gel, neoprene, carbon fiber, nylon, vinyl, or PU.
When we say design, we’re mainly talking about the methods of closing the knee pads securely, which come in two main designs. The first design is the form-fitting, pull-over design, which can be very similar to putting on a pair of socks. The second design is one that features straps such as Velcro or click straps. This is the type we prefer the most because it’s less likely to move.
The cushioning of a knee pad is that outer cap that covers it. This outer shell is usually made of gel, neoprene, carbon fiber, rubber, or hard plastic. The purpose of this shell is to protect your knees by absorbing impact. We highly recommend going for softer materials such as neoprene because they allow for better mobility than rigid materials such as hard plastic.
This isn’t all that important of a factor to consider, but wouldn’t you like to buy a pair of pads that can be used for more than just knee protection? There are products on the market that you can use as knee, elbow and chin caps such as the McDavid 6440 Hex Knee Pads. While it’s not that crucial, it’s something to consider.
One of the main benefits of wearing knee caps is that they keep the muscles around the knees warm and help prevent the knees from getting cold. However, you want to make sure that the knee pads are highly breathable so that they don’t overheat your knees. Neoprene is one of the best materials used in the manufacturing of knee pads when it comes to breathability.
Skiing and snowboarding are exceptionally fun sports, but they can also be the cause of severe knee injuries. The best way to ensure that your holiday fun isn’t cut short is by limiting the possibility for this type of injury.