- Bike Checks
When neck braces first came around a few years ago, one of the more common concerns was how they would fit with a chest protector. Chest pro makers were not too quick jump on the neck brace band wagon, possibly in case the whole neck brace thing was just a passing fad. It wasn’t. Neck braces are now more widely used than ever before, and chest protector companies have begun to take them into consideration when designing their latest products.
One company that cannot help but focus on neck brace/chest protector integration is the company that started the whole neck brace movement in the first place, Leatt. The safety-oriented manufacturer first entered the chest protection market a little over a year ago, and their designs have already come a long way.
Now with several options to choose from, the Leatt chest protectors are at the same level as others that have been in the game for much longer.
We chose to try out the Leatt Chest Protector Adventure Lite in the TECH colorway. With the hot summer months well underway, “Lite” is an easy selling point. The Lite shares all of the same features as the regular Adventure model in the torso area, but the shoulders are different. Where as the full-blown version has plastic shoulder and arm guards, the Lite simply has biofoam padding with hook and loop adjustments for length (unique to the Lite).
As the features state, the slim design allows the Adventure Lite to be worn over or under the jersey. We have tried both and cannot say that one way is better than another. Unless you have a very slim jersey, the Lite is virtually unnoticeable when worn underneath and the bio-foam is quite comfortable and breathable as well. However, if the chest protector in worn under the jersey, it cancels out two features of the Adventure Lite.
When worn over the jersey, the Brace On tabs atop the shoulders replace the secure strap for the Leatt neck braces. The tabs are a very simple design, but also do a great job of keep your brace in place when riding by securing to the small wing/extension on the bottom part of all Leatt GPX braces.
The other feature that can only be used when the Adeventure Lite is worn over the jersey, is the upper back panel slot (which is also removable). This allows the braces rear strut to slip right in, for an even more secure fit. This is an excellent feature, although I found that I preferred to remove that rear panel altogether to allow more freedom of movement. With the rear panel removed, there is very little bulk on the back of the chest protector and it works perfectly both under and over the jersey.
The front panel also has a removable upper piece to further improve neck brace comfort and fit, but I have so far chosen to keep this piece on, as it does not seem to get in the way.
Last but not least is the strap and closure system. Just like everything else on the Adventure Lite Chest Protector, the buckles are a minimalist design; no moving parts at all. A built-in hook on the front panel pairs with the plastic loop on the strap. Just snap them in place and you are ready to roll.
For someone looking for that extra bit of protection on the track without the extra bulk, the Leatt Adventure Lite Chest Protector is a great option.
For more information on the Adventure Lite Chest Protector and other Leatt products, visit www.leatt-brace.com.