Leg armor????

alright, this weekend earned my first nasty shin gouge. The four long verticle scabs on my left shin are telling me it’s time to get that leg armor i’ve been regretfully doing without for too long.

It’s been a while since ive seen any info regrading the availability and quality of shin guards from roach. I know the company went through some changes after bineg aquired by race face, i think it was race face anyway…

Just wondering what the best way to go with armor is these days…

If anyone could give me some reccomendations on a good pair of shin guards… I’m looking for good front protection and decent rear coverage.
I’d prefer the pads to not cover my knees, but i could probably deal with that. the olwer they go on the ankle the better as long as they wont interfere with a low-top bmx/skateboard style shoe. Price is not of much concern.

I was previously looking at a pair of dianese guard that looked really nice but i was told that they slide around quite a bit…

Thanks ahead of time for any thoughts.

I would call roach and get some shins made up for you. I know they used to offer them.

Another option is the new Kris Holm armor, it goes up the knee but is more improvements on old roach than new race face roach.

If you can get some of the first batch I believe these were all hand made in Canada by the people who used to handel roach out of better materials that wont be avalible when they are made overseas.


Email Darren Bedford for some Kris Holm armour. That is were I got mine. They are better and more comfy than the Roach.

Plan on a 4 month wait at least if you want something custom done from Roach.


If shin guards are what you want, why not get some soccer shin guards? That’s what I used before I got 661’s for full coverage. I used soccer shin guards with nice ankle pads attached and then used skater kneepads in addition. This is the same kind of thing that Tom Blackwood is using right now. It’s a cheap way to go when you are finding out if you like this kind of riding. If you do like it, you will eventually get full cover stuff.

The main motivation on my setup isn’t cost…I have some Roach armour, I just find it very difficult to ride with it on, and I have enough difficulties in that area as it is :smiley:

Here’s a photo of the setup I use. It’s basically a cheepo pair of volleyball kneepads worn backward over my calf, then a pair of Nike soccer shin guards (with padded ankles) worn normally to protect my shins. Here: http://www.unicyclist.com/gallery/albuq62/woods_muni_two0013

I sacrifice knee protection for mobility. I arrived at the backward knee pad strategy after doing this:


I’ve had a couple similar incidents since then, and the padding has worked each time. I know longer fear my Primos.


That’s funny - I wear knee protection for mobility! I hate the restriction of the full Roach-type pads, too, but I like walking more. YMMV.


661 4x4s are tougher than the Roaches, and you don’t have to wait a year (or forever, in my case) for customer service. They are nicely flexible and cover the back of your leg really well. I use an alternate strapping pattern that is more comfortable.

Lizardskins makes a neoprene shin protector with no knee that works really well, according to one of our local riders.

Exactly what I was going to suggest him getting. I wear the LizardSkins ShinGuards because I too don’t like the way my 661’s restrict my movement. The 3 good things about these ShinGuards are that:
A. They are very long and will protect you from ankle all the way to knee.
B. The protective insert comes to a V in the front so heavy contact / pedal slap is not even remotly felt because the protective surface is raised away from your shin.
C. They provide relatively good calf protection. I have large calfs and still they protect 95% of the back of my leg.

Order them online from my shop and we’ll ship them for free…

661s Cheap

I would go with a pair of the 661s myself…and I actually did! Just check out the low prices from JensoUSA.com!! Just hope they have your size!


I use the new roach armour which I like allright they aren’t as comfortable as the old original roach armour because the inside is a molded foam that is suposed to decrease the amount of skin contact and not be as hot but I think they are just as hot and the ribs cause chafing. but after washing them a couple of times it’s not as bad as when they were new. I cant remember where I got them it was a place John Childs told me about, it wasn’t price point but it was a company like that, and they were less expensive than the old roach pads I think the were about fifty dollars plus shipping but I think they offer better protection than the 661s and I like the straps better. The calf protection is a very heavy mesh material that seems to offer as much protection as the older solid fabric and it’s cooler on the backs of your legs, I have taken several hits from my pedals with no injury. I have very long legs and the 661s aren’t long enough for me and the old roaches were never available in the tall size so I had a pair of mediums and they were allways scooting down which was anoying. It does take getting used to the restriction of movement but I hardly notice it anymore and I like the full protection, I dont like wearing them for freestyle but they work great for muni and trials.


i used to not like my 661s because they were uncomfortable. after riding with them for a couple months i got used to them and now i dont even notice. it doesnt even restrict my trials riding. there are though, a few places with lack of protection. the back of the leg is much more susceptible to damage than the front, and if you are tall, as i am, it leaves the ankle area wide open.

Re: Leg armor???

On Tue, 3 Feb 2004 09:09:59 -0600, U-Turn
<U-Turn@NoEmail.Message.Poster.at.Unicyclist.com> wrote:

>I use an alternate
>strapping pattern that is more comfortable.

Can you elaborate? And/or provide a pic?

Klaas Bil - Newsgroup Addict

I have a feeling you might need two points of contact with the ground for such a thing to work? Or at least training wheels on the front and rear. - John Foss commenting on a picture of a one-wheeled vehicle he saw on RSU.

Ill third the lizard skins idea. I wear the shin guards and the knee pads. They’re all ive ever worn (and a helmet). I really like the way they cover my ankles (esp when riding my KH). The 661s dont seem to go down far enough.

Two thumbs up! :smiley:

Re: Re: Leg armor???

Sorry for the delay, Klaas. Assuming that you have the nice lettering on the outside of your leg, take the inside top strap and, instead of wrapping it around your leg, simply take it down the inside and attach it to the next big “loop” patch so that it is essentially unused. This may work for you or it may be leg-dimension-sensitive. But using both straps around the top is uncomfortable, moreover it tends to make the top slide down rather than “float” in place the way it should.


I’m about to buy some shin/ankle/knee protection too, and i was just wondering what the situation was with the Kris Holm pads in terms of protection in the rear. Also, have you all found that most pedal bites happen in the front or the back?

Check it out - from the man himself:

hint: search kris holm leg armor - first hit!

I just want to say that I tried out my 661’s today, and I’m pleased with them. At the moment they are slightly uncomfortable, but I was able to take some pretty serious crashes (I was going off snow jumps on my MUni again) without any pain. They stayed right in place (I ended up with the Large) and they didn’t slide around at all. And if you buy them from JensonUSA (see the link above), they are $25, with shipping. I can’t compare them to other brands, but they are very nice at that price.

These look great! Too bad Unicycle.com is out of stock in my size indefinately.

Kris - any chance there will be another production run sometime soon?