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Phoenix Motorcycle Training LTD

3 Awesome Dirt Bike Jackets and Tips for Choosing the Best One for Off-Road Adventures

Imagine revving your engine, taking on those wild, untamed trails. It’s just you, your dirt bike, and the great outdoors. Tackling tricky trails on knobbly tyres is for the brave of heart, the thrill seekers, and the daredevils willing to push their limits. But that’s not to say you need to put your body in danger when riding off-road. When you part ways with your machine unexpectedly, trusty dirt bike jackets will cushion your fall.

Your trail riding jacket is your armour against the elements, your safety net on those heart-pounding rides, and your cushion against injury. So what makes a dirt bike jacket truly awesome? And how do you find the one that’s perfect for you?

These aren’t just questions; they’re the keys to unlocking your off-road adventures. Lucky for you, we’ve got the answers and then some. We’ll explore features like ventilation, armour inserts and abrasion-resistant fabrics that set a great jacket above a good one. We’ll give you our three top dirt bike jacket recommendations we know you’ll love and finish up with tips you need to decide on the best jacket for you.

So if you’re keen on tearing up the trails in comfort, style and safety, jump on! Let’s explore this essential piece of off-road riding kit.

Essential dirt bike jacket features for adventuring in style

Your off-road kit needs to fit like a second skin, providing both protection and freedom of movement. It needs to be made from tough stuff to handle the rugged demands of off-road riding, from impact to vibration, while keeping you comfortable in any weather condition. But what truly sets a great dirt bike jacket apart are the added extras on top of the essential features. From ventilation to waterproofing, and room for armour inserts if you choose extra protection, these elements elevate your ride to new heights.

So let’s take a look at the essential features along with the added extras that make a dirt bike jacket worth splashing some extra cash on.

Fabrics for added protection

When you’re tearing up the trails, your dirt bike jacket needs to be more than just stylish—it needs to be your second skin, protecting you from whatever nature throws your way. That’s where the choice of fabric comes into play. While leather might be perfect for cruising down the highway, off-road adventures demand something lighter yet equally durable. Enter man-made abrasion-resistant, water-resistant, and breathable textiles. These are carefully chosen for different parts of your jacket to withstand the harsh realities of off-road riding.

Among these fabrics, Dyneema stands out as a modern marvel. Originally developed by the military for bullet-proof vests, Dyneema’s ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) composition makes it incredibly strong and durable. But it’s remarkably lightweight.

Kevlar, another heavyweight in the fabric world, has been used in motorcycle clothing for decades. It boasts unparalleled strength—five times stronger than steel—and exceptional resistance to cuts, impact, and abrasion.

Finally, there’s Cordura, perhaps not as mighty as Dyneema or Kevlar, but prized for its flexibility, grip, and comfort. You’ll find this soft-to-touch fabric in key areas of dirt bike jackets, trousers and off-road gloves. Cordura ensures both protection and easy movement on the trail.

The best dirt bike jackets include a mixture of two or all of these fabrics to ensure durability, comfort and all-round protection for riders.

What’s the difference between a dirt bike jacket and a regular motorcycle jacket?

It’s not just the lightness of the fabric that makes a dirt bike jacket different from a regular motorcycle jacket. Off-road riding demands a unique blend of protection, flexibility and breathability, leading to distinct differences in jacket design and construction. From the choice of materials to the placement of armour inserts, dirt bike jackets are tailored to meet the specific demands of off-road terrain, ensuring both safety and performance in every ride.

So, as you gear up for your off-road escapades, remember: your jacket material isn’t just about style—it’s your first line of defence against the elements and challenges of the trail.

Padding and armour for dirt bike jackets

Broken collar bones and dislocated shoulders are all too common in off-road riding, but you don’t have to become another statistic. Choosing a dirt bike jacket with proper padding and room for armour adds another layer of defence against these injuries.

Some jackets come equipped with armour inserts, while others offer pockets and extra space for you to add your own. Chest and back protectors, as well as wrist and neck braces, should be worn whenever possible. They’ll give vital protection where you need it most. When trying on jackets, make sure there’s enough room for these accessories to fit comfortably and securely.

All off-road jackets feature padding in the elbow and shoulder areas. That enhances durability and impact absorption. Modern materials like viscoelastic offer superior protection, molding to your body while hardening upon impact to dissipate force. In contrast, older foam padding is bulkier and less effective, underscoring the importance of investing in gear with state-of-the-art materials.

As you gear up for your next adventure, remember: your safety is the top priority. The right padding and armour will keep you riding for longer.

Keep your cool on trails with the right fit and ventilation

Off-road riding demands agility and endurance. Your dirt bike jacket plays a crucial role in keeping you comfortable and focused on the trail. That’s why a proper fit and strategic ventilation are essential for tackling the rugged terrain. It keeps your mind focused on the track.

Adjustable chest ventilation allows you to regulate airflow, keeping you cool and refreshed even during the most intense rides. Removable sleeves offer versatility, letting you adapt to changing conditions without sacrificing protection. Just make sure your jacket has convenient pockets to stow away those sleeves when not in use.

When it comes to fit, your jacket should feel snug but not restrictive. It needs to be tight enough to stay in place during the most daring manoeuvres, yet flexible for unrestricted movement on the bike. Pay close attention to the fit around the arms, shoulders, chest, and back. This will ensure your armour stays securely in place in the event of a fall. Don’t hesitate to try on jackets with armour inserts before making a decision, especially if it’s your first off-road jacket purchase.

Top three dirt bike jackets

Now you’ve got the low down on the materials and styles for off-road riding jackets it’s time to share our top three recommendations. Each of these offers essential features along with some additional extras that make them stand out as top-notch off-road kit. 

Klim Latitude Jacket

Klim dirt bike jacket in blue

Introducing the Klim Latitude Jacket – a legendary touring companion, now in its fifth iteration. Engineered for epic journeys and redesigned for maximum comfort and mobility, this jacket boasts extensive adjustment features. Expect reduced bulk, strategic stretch panels for unrestricted movement and GORE-TEX Performance Shell technology that guarantees to keep you dry through rain, hail or shine.

Featuring 600D Cordura® overlays on shoulders and perforated goat leather on elbows, expect superior durability and protection. D3O® LP1 Level 1 vented shoulders, adjustable elbow armour and a D3O® Viper CE Level 1 back pad ensure your safety is never compromised. Enhanced airflow comes via massive adjustable vents, a collar tab and back design, keeping you cool and comfortable even on the longest rides.

With a 5-star rating from 15 riders, the Klim Latitude Jacket is the ultimate choice for riders looking for top-grade performance, comfort, and durability for their adventures.

Leatt Moto 5.5 Enduro Jacket

Leatt dirt bike jacket in orange and black styling

The Leatt 5.5 Enduro Jacket is the ultimate choice for off-road performance riding. The lightweight yet durable construction is built to withstand the toughest conditions. The design is enhanced by abrasion and cut-resistant brush guard protective films on the elbows for added durability.

Versatile, water-resistant, and also dirt-repellent, this jacket will keep you dry and comfortable in all weather conditions. We love the removable arms for ventilation. You’ll stay cool as a cucumber in the hottest conditions, and be able to adapt to changeable English weather conditions quickly. The internal hydration pocket with a suspension system is inspired and keeps your water supply in place for both short and long rides.

The tailored 3/4 length fit is compatible with or without body armor, and the collar is designed to accommodate a Leatt neck brace. Top-quality YKK Japan zippers, multi-row reinforced stitching, and a total of nine pockets including water-resistant and touchscreen options, this jacket offers unmatched performance and convenience on any ride.

Fox Racing Legion Dirt Bike Jacket

Introducing the Fox Legion Jacket – your ultimate companion for off-road adventures! Built for rugged terrains and chilly conditions, this jacket is ideal for UK trail riding. It seamlessly blends durability with race-ready performance. The versatile design allows for quick conversion into a vest, perfect for those unpredictable weather shifts on the trail.

Crafted from abrasion-resistant fabric, it shields you from obstacles while offering freedom of movement with stretch Cordura® panels. With features like internal pockets for optional D3O® elbow pads and ample storage options, this jacket is functional and stylish. Glowing reviews average 4.5 stars, making it clear that this jacket is a top choice among riders seeking quality, durability, and performance for off-road safety and style.

Making the best choice in off-road jackets

When it comes to selecting the perfect dirt bike jacket for your off-road adventures, what’s best for you may not be the same as the next person. That’s because your riding style, conditions and budget need to be considered. 

Check your rider position

Consider your typical riding conditions before choosing which jacket is right for you. Are you mainly riding in wet and cold climates? Do you frequently tackle slippery chalk trails? Are you often leading the ride and in charge of maps? Understanding the weather, terrain and the things you need to take with you will help you prioritize features like waterproofing, ventilation, durability and pockets.

Considering your style

Your personal preferences and style also play a role in finding the ideal dirt bike jacket. Is a snug fit for maximum protection a priority? Are you a long-distance endurance rider, or do you enjoy adrenaline-fueled motocross races? Do you want to get matchy-matchy with your bike, or are colour combos not high on your list of considerations? Tailoring your jacket choice to your unique preferences and riding style ensures a more enjoyable experience on the trail. Not to mention a comfortable jacket you’ll wear on every ride.

How much cash should you splash?

While it’s tempting to splurge on the latest and greatest gear, budget considerations are essential when choosing a dirt bike jacket. Set a realistic budget based on your financial situation and prioritise features that align with your needs and preferences. Remember, a higher price tag doesn’t always equate to better quality, so do your research and choose wisely to get the best value for your money.

Check reviews, ask for recommendations

Online reviews and recommendations from fellow riders will help you narrow down your options. Websites, forums, and social media platforms are excellent resources for gathering insights and feedback on different dirt bike jackets. Pay attention to reviews that highlight specific features, durability, and overall performance to make an informed decision.

Ultimately, which dirt bike jacket is best for you comes down to these four elements and your stance on each one. Don’t rush your decision or skimp on the price. Your dirt bike jacket is a key piece of off-road gear that brings together many of the protective elements needed for safety on the trail.

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