Mobius X8 Wrist Brace
Sadly, most don't spend enough time considering wrist protection until after a crash, when your wrist is wounded and flopping around like a freshly-landed fish. However, during the course of this review I ran the Mobius X8 brace through the entire gamut... both pre-injury, and then finishing our 450 Shootout with one back on as I'd dislocated my wrist during the testing.
Mobius X8 Wrist Brace Features:
- The X8 Wrist Brace is equipped with a CCRS (Continuous Cable Routing System), which is a Mobius patent-pending technology.
- Tightening the knob on the CCRS increases the tension, keeping the wrist joint tight and resisting hyperextension, by reinforcing the ligaments inside the wrist.
- The CCRS offers a progressive tension system, without hard lockouts.
- The Mobius X8 is ambidextrous and can be used on either the left or right wrist.
- Available as S/M or M/L.
- MSRP: $199.95
I will admit, I wasn't totally sold when I first saw the Mobius X8. A couple of my initial impressions were actually against the braces. For one, I thought the dial was possibly a gimmick since it's already on their knee brace and was maybe being re-purposed. Also, the fact that the brace can be used on either the left of right wrist had me worried. Previous wrist braces I'd tried were side "specific" and felt horrible if placed on the wrong wrist.
To my surprise, the braces were quite comfortable as I placed them on both wrists...sliding my middle fingers into the hole of the neoprene. From there I strapped down the velcro then started cranking on the dial, playing with the tightness and how that effected the range of motion. The tighter the dial (and cables), the less movement I had in my wrist. If I wanted, I could really crank down on the dial and restrict a lot of wrist movement, but also without the restraint being too tight on my wrist. The pattern of the cables and the padding for the wrist pad was quite comfortable and didn't bind into my hand. As for the cables themselves, they're fully encased in routing and padding, so you don't feel them dig into your wrist and beyond that the cables themselves are made of nylon and not a metal material.
The foam restraints for the fingers were another concern, as I was sure I'd feel the material between my fingers and with wearing a size extra small glove, I tend to notice anything that binds up between my fingers. However, the neoprene is so soft that it compressed nicely between my fingers and within a few seconds I wasn't even aware it was there. Also the neoprene sleeve runs all the way along the inside of the brace as one piece, and it's held in place by velcro. Because of this, you can peel it off the velcro and move it farther up or down the brace to change the length of the finger restraint from the brace itself. This combination of finger restraint and wrist cables/velcro straps seems to work well, as the finger loop keeps it from slipping up your arm, while the wrist cables and velcro straps keep it from falling off the end of you hand and securely around your arm.
Overall, I found it fairly straightforward to adjust the braces, and finding a comfortable position and tension to get started. At this point, I was actually fairly impressed with the movement and feel of the brace off the track, and was looking forward to trying them while on the bike.
On the Track
My first day with the X8s was at the 2018 Kawasaki KX250F intro this year. I went out for a few warm up laps without the braces, came in and placed one on each wrist, then went right out for our filming session and to dial in the bike. Normally, I wouldn't mess with new products during a bike intro, but I thought it would be interesting to see how quickly I could adapt to the braces and to my surprise, I ran the whole day of testing without a real thought of taking them off.
For starters, I ran both braces at around the same "light" tension, then after a few laps cranked them down further. For my left wrist this wasn't a problem, but I did back the right one off just a bit to keep a bit more movement for my throttle hand. With previous wrist braces I've tried, I wasn't able to adapt as quickly, and I place a lot of that on the lockout systems they used. The X8 builds tension, but doesn't slam into a solid block (say off a jump landing) like other braces, making it much easier to find the limits of the brace's movement gradually. This build of tension on the X8 really makes it much easier to work with as it doesn't upset your natural movement as easily.
After a few random days of testing the braces, sometimes both or just one side to swap back and forth, I was genuinely impressed. But, I don't have a prior wrist injury to deal with, and even with the comfort I found myself straying away from the braces, mostly on the throttle side. Fast-forward a few more weeks to our 2018 450 Shootout, and the end of our second day of testing. There I am, smashing my face and hands into the hard-packed soil at Milestone on a late afternoon and getting up with a partially dislocated wrist. With one day left on our testing schedule, I attempted to ride with my wrist taped up, but after a few laps I pulled in and yanked the X8 from deep within my gearbag. At first I ran the X8 with some minor tension, but with the newly found slop in my wrist I just ended up running the Mobius as snugly as I could. After cranking the dial well beyond where I had before, I now had just a few degrees of movement, but it was still comfortable to wear in the sense that it wasn't digging into my arm.
With the X8, I finished out our last day of testing, and although I was in full chicken wing mode with my right arm, the amount of support it offered was amazing and allowed to me to continue on. Without the brace, my wrist was literally flopping around in the joint and had little to no support. With the X8 my wrist was again precise and stable, relieving some pain and allowing me to continue my day without the fear of my hand slipping off the bars. Was I sore afterwards? Heck yeah! But in the moment the brace did its job and I was able to get around the track just fine.
The Last Word
The ease of use and adjustment, plus the relatively low price compared to similar high-end braces make the Mobius an instant winner in my book. The simple retention system and attachment to your hand makes it easy to set up and dial in for my personal needs. A standout feature is how the Mobius creates resistance through its range of motion, and doesn't rely on a lockout system to restrain maximum movement of the wrist. I feel like this makes the X8 much easier to get used to riding with, when compared to a brace that fully locks out and feels too restrictive.
My only real negatives are the lack of color options, as I'd like to see a simple black design for those that don't want the pop of white, or the constant cleaning needed to keep them looking fresh. Other than that, my only durability concern lies with the neoprene that secures it to your fingers. While I've yet to tear mine, it seems like the weakest material point on the brace and could tear with time in the elements. Luckily, this part is easily changed and replaced.
While it is a great preventive injury product, I know most won't look this way until the evil deed is done. If that's the case, the Mobius really offers the needed support to get back on the track even if your wrist doesn't agree. If it wasn't for this product, there's no way I could've finished out our 450 Shootout, as the two laps I did without it after injury my wrist were unbearable and just straight sketchy. With the X8, however, I was good to ride until the late hours of the afternoon.
Vital MX Rating: 4.5 Stars - Outstanding
For more information and to find out availability, check out MobiusBraces.com.
About the Test Rider
Michael Lindsay - is a born-and-raised moto freak and gearhead from the heart of motocross in Southern California. First swinging a leg over a bike at the age of five, he immediately caught the racing bug, spending nearly every weekend behind a gate…and a lot of time on the couch while injured. While swinging back and forth between moto and the off-road scene, giving him a wide range of experience on the bike. Of course, all of this led to one thing: Lindsay loves working on his bikes almost as much as he loves talking about them. When he’s not in the Vital MX forum or writing his latest product review, you can find him out at the track taking dirt naps, snapping some pictures, or drooling over the latest parts for his bike. With an outspoken personality, gearhead background, and as Vital MX’s guru for product, Michael is here to share his unbiased opinion.
Review by Michael Lindsay // Photos by Michael Lindsay, Steve Giberson, and Drew Ruiz
For more on the Mobius X8 Wrist Brace, head over to www.MobiusBraces.com