The motorcycle back protector is an accessory or equipment that reinforces our safety. If you are not familiar with it, we will explain its origins, what types exist and what its main advantages are.
I always emphasize the equipment used in motorcycles for safety. From the approved helmet to the boots. Choosing the right clothing minimizes the consequences in the event of a traffic accident. On this occasion, we are going to deal with the motorcycle back protector.
For many users, it is a really unknown accessory. However, like other kits, it plays a vital role in terms of protection. If you want to know what it is, what it is for, what types and variations exist, or what advantages it brings, this post should interest you. Keep reading!
What is a motorcycle back protector?
Interestingly, the dictionary does not define the term “motorcycle back protector”. But its name makes it easy to guess what we are talking about; an accessory that protects the back of motorcyclists.
And like other inventions applied to sports and competitive users, its origins are in the field of competition. Specifically, in the Speed World Championship.
Briefly, this is its story:
In the 70s of the last century, the British Barry Sheene, a great friend of Ángel Nieto, was one of the best riders on the World Cup scene. And, despite his rebellious image, he was always concerned about safety.
This is how, by hand, he attached pieces of foam rubber to his racing suit in order to protect his back.
In 1979, the first back protector developed by an equipment firm appeared. A motorcycle back protector whose shape was inspired by the shell of a lobster.
Like other innovations related to passive safety, that invention did not arouse great expectation… until 1984. At the South African GP, Freddie Spencer suffered a spectacular fall and violently hit the asphalt with his back. And although the spectators feared the worst, the American was badly hit but safe. Thanks to the protector released that day.
Since then, the use of this accessory has become widespread in speed circuits and off-road tracks. And, as expected, also in the gear of dirt bike riders or those who move daily by motorcycle or two wheels.
How does a motorcycle back protector work?
In the case of public roads, motorcycle clothing accessories, except for helmets, are not mandatory. But yes, highly recommended! And among those accessories, we must include the motorcycle back protector. This is so because:
- A back protector prevents risks to the spine, which, in turn, is responsible for preserving the spinal cord. We are talking about a part of the human body that ranges from the medulla oblongata to the lumbar region.
- Injuries related to the spine and spinal cord can cause anything from severe back pain or pressure in the neck and head to paralysis or difficulty with balance and walking.
As with a motorcycle helmet or a motorcycle airbag vest, a back protector does not guarantee absolute protection. But, without a doubt, its use minimizes the risk of spinal cord injury. And, therefore, it contributes to lessening the effects of a blow or a fall.
Types of motorcycle back protectors
At this point, it should be noted that all protectors are not the same. On the one hand, it is important to know the existing approvals. And on the other, what types of back protectors are on the market? Knowing these details, it will be easier for us to choose the most appropriate model.
Classes and certifications of back protectors
In the first place, we will deal with the classification and certifications of the back protectors. For a model to be safe, it must comply with the UNE-EN 1621-2:2014 standard regarding impact protection clothing for motorcyclists.
This rule must appear on the label together with the picture of a motorcyclist. And next to the latter, some letters and numbers must appear that will help you understand:
- The letter B means that the motorcycle back protector covers the upper part of the back.
- As for the letters BL, they indicate that the protector preserves the entire dorsal.
- For their part, the models labeled with Level 1 are capable of withstanding impacts of up to 18 kilonewtons of force.
- And Level 2 protectors resist up to 9 kilonewtons.
When purchasing a motorcycle back protector, take a good look at its label to verify that it is approved and certified. And also to know its characteristics. Depending on how it is, it will give you more or less protection.
Back protector classes
Once we have reviewed the classes and certifications of back protectors, we are going to explain what kinds of back protectors you will find on the market:
- Back protectors. They cover the entire back and adjust to the body through straps and a lumbar belt.
- Back protectors for jackets. Some motorcycle jackets include a back protector as standard. Otherwise, they are usually equipped with a space to place protectors that are purchased separately.
- Off-road protectors. Lastly, back protectors for practicing off-road specialties can be purchased separately or integrated into a bib with chest, shoulder, and elbow protectors.
With the motorcycle back protector, don’t play with it. Go to trusted establishments and let yourself be advised by their professionals. In the case of back protectors and bibs, it is important that they facilitate mobility and that they are breathable. And when it comes to back protectors for jackets, make sure they fit snugly.
Advantages of using motorcycle chest and back protector
If you dare to buy a protector, you will see that the offer is varied. With prices ranging from less than 20 euros or dollars to more than 200 euros; there are many models to choose from. But the main thing is that you acquire a quality accessory.
Regarding the advantages of using these protectors, we have been mentioning them throughout this post. But, by way of summary, take note:
- Back protectors are used by many motorcyclists. If you are not one of them, and you are not sure whether to use it or not, think about your safety. Worth!
- Like the airbag vest, a back brace prevents cervical and lumbar fractures and spinal cord injuries.
- They are approved and certified products. Thus, they pass a series of resistance tests before being launched on the market.
- In specialized stores, there are many models to choose from and a range of prices suitable for all pockets.