A product I don't want to test. So far I haven’t had to.
When I first started riding my (t)rusty C70 many moons ago, I was quite happy tearing around in trainers, shorts and a t-shirt. All I needed was the bike keys, a crash helmet and I was off. Nowadays, it takes a bit longer to get going.
Decent trousers, gloves, jacket, boots and a helmet properly done up are the minimum requirements these days. I swear I could have already got to my destination in the time it takes to get ready sometimes. But even with all this gear, there was an important part of my back (most of it) not properly protected.
Before I got the Knox Aegis, I was quite happy using the existing foam back protection. Ignorance is bliss, and it wasn’t until I started wearing this bit of kit that I realized how much safer a dedicated back protector is going to be in the event of a crash.
This Aegis uses cells of small plastic tubes encased in a funky armadillo kind-of set-up that moves with the curvature of your spine. As a bonus it also features adjustable kidney protection but these will not help with excessive alcohol consumption. The protection offered might be similar as dedicated ‘soft’ back protectors, but the solid feel certainly gives me a more reassuring feeling of safety.
The protector covers your whole back, and not just a third of it like some of the flimsy foam pocket protection that comes as standard in some jackets. The Knox Aegis comes in several sizes, all with a large range of adjustability. Racers can get a longer version that covers your coccyx, although this might not be so suitable for upright road riding.
A large Velcro strap holds the back protector in place (along with an expanding waistline) with the addition of brace style shoulder straps.
You soon get used to wearing a dedicated back protector like this, and on the odd occasion I have ridden without it I have been left feeling slightly vulnerable. So even though it adds another few seconds to get ready, it is now worn religiously.
For around £100, this bit of kit could keep you out of a wheelchair. What’s not to like? Plus, it’s got the added bonus of stopping t-shirts from riding up your back, perfect now that chilly winter weather is on its way.
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