Electric Longboard Safety Gear
I’ll be honest, when I first started riding my electric longboard I never took safety gear into consideration. I was the guy riding my electric longboard without a helmet or pads and although I don’t think you absolutely need every piece of safety equipment available, I do think you do need specific items for specific circumstances. Beyond needing safety gear for riding your electric longboard, we also need to address the style or type of safety gear. I’m going to discuss this for each item specifically, but let’s dive into my list of safety gear and equipment you will need for electric longboard riding.
So this is probably the most important and also most obvious piece of equipment, but it’s also the most likely item that riders refuse to wear. I can stress the importance of this by providing many real-life examples of what has happened to those who have not worn their helmets while riding as well as photos of those who have had their helmets saved their lives. However, I will spare you the endless examples as I’m sure you’ve come across them at some point.
One factor about the helmet I can’t stress enough (outside of simply wearing one) is the helmet style! Many people don’t know this, but indeed there are styles of helmets and if you wear the wrong one it could be as useless as not wearing one at all. Do not use a bike helmet! This is a mistake many new riders or those who own bike helmets make. A bike helmet is not meant for an electric longboard. When you fall off a bike you fall in different ways than when you fall off an electric longboard. You’ll want to look for skate or longboard helmets.
The major difference between the bike helmet and skate helmet is their shape and the parts of the head that they cover. You will notice that most skate helmets will cover the entire back and sides of the head, whereas the bike helmet usually covers the upper half of the head and leaves most of the lower half and back sides bare. The shapes of the helmets are also usually different. The skate helmet will be more rounded and wrapped around the head, but the bike helmet will usually be more oval-shaped.
You may also want to consider full-face helmets. I recommend this for those who are riding electric longboards that have higher speed capabilities and could cause potentially harsh falls. There are a variety of full-face helmets to choose from and I suggest making sure your helmet has safety certification as not all helmets are certified. It’s important to have the right helmet as the last thing you want to do is wear a helmet that provides you with a false sense of security. There are bike helmets that also cover areas that skate helmets would so keep in mind that this rule comes with some exceptions. Just make sure the helmet you purchase covers the areas that a skate helmet would normally cover.
Body pads are where some electric longboard riders tend to stop, but it is nearly just as important as wearing a helmet. To be honest, most falls I’ve seen or experienced tend to cause damage to the body as opposed to the head. This includes hands, arms, legs, chest, back, and everywhere in between. One of the most common serious injuries caused by electric longboard accidents is fractured collar bones. This is simply due to the way someone might fall and hit the ground. Although there is no specific protective gear to prevent collar bones from breaking, you can cover up areas of your body to enable better form while falling pushing the force onto another covered area of the body. Leg and arm fractures are also a close second in common serious injuries that can potentially occur while riding an electric longboard.
This is why it is important to cover up these areas as best as possible. Wrist pads, elbow pads, knee pads, shoulder pads, and even shin pads can aid in fully preventing your body from injuries and fractures. However, some people find all this equipment to be far too bulky and in some cases uncomfortable. So how can you get the best of safety and comfort? You can use protective gear like the products provided by Noblemantech. These products tend to feel a lot more comfortable and are somewhat low profile, but still provide a full sense of protection. Noblemantech also sells padded shirts that you can wear to further mitigate any damage to your back, chest, and ribs. You can find Nobleman protective gear on the Shaboardz website under Safety and apparel, here’s a link: https://www.shaboardz.ca/apparel/
Shaboardz also has some value-priced options for personal protection, check out their body pad and wrist guard combo here: https://www.shaboardz.ca/product/protective-pads/
If you plan to slide, race, or make tight turns with your electric longboard you may also want to consider a set of sliding gloves. These aren’t fully necessary and are most often used by riders that are in an electric longboard race or are more experienced. I do recommend them if you are already used to riding a manual longboard and have been already using sliding gloves. However, these aren’t a must-have for your electric longboard riding experience. Keep in mind that you do eventually need to replace the pucks that grasp onto the sliding gloves but other than that they are more or less low maintenance.
First Aid Kit
At some point, you or someone you are riding with will have an accident or a slip and fall. It’s important to be able to treat wounds and stop bleeding right away. I can’t stress how inconvenient things will get for an injured rider without any bandages that are bleeding from multiple areas. This actually happened to me when a group of people walked onto the bike path without looking which caused me to fly off in order to avoid hitting them. Neither I nor my friend had our first aid kits and I was bleeding from both of my palms and my knees. I had to find a public washroom to ease the bleeding and even then it wasn’t too helpful. Had I brought my mini first aid kit I could have easily cleaned my wounds and bandaged them up. I have since added all the necessary items to clean and heal basic wounds to my riding bag. This also includes a towel just in case things get really messy.
When you think of safety gear you may not think of lights right away, but they are probably one of the most important pieces of safety equipment for night rides. There are two types of lights you’ll want to consider:
1 – Those that allow you to see
2 – Those that allow you to be seen
Technically all lights allow you to see, but not all of them also focus on allowing you to be seen. This is why I factor in two light types that also reflect on two different areas. The first area is your electric longboard. The lights on your electric longboard can both aid you in seeing the path ahead of you clearly, but also they can focus on making you stand out. For example, if I have rainbow RGB LED lights around the rim of my electric longboard, they don’t necessarily help me see the path ahead of me. Similarly, if I have tail lights they aren’t there to help me see the path as much as they are to help me be seen by others. Whereas headlights on my electric longboard can vastly improve the visibility ahead of me while also allowing others to see me in dark areas. You can apply this same theory to lights on your backpack, helmet, or other gear you have on while riding.
Now let’s address the second type of light that you should include in your gear, the helmet or wrist light. I use the term helmet or wrist because I find some riders prefer to have a light on their hand or arm as opposed to the helmet. Either way, this elevated light serves a different purpose than the headlights on your electric longboard. While the headlights focus on the path ahead of you and expose dips or cracks on the pavement, the headlight or wrist light exposes and illuminates the surrounding area ahead of you. This includes the path, but this light tends to be more ambient in that it is illuminating areas above the height of the deck and not limited to one angle.
There are many options for lights, but I like to recommend Shredlights since they support the global electric longboard community by providing giveaways for group rides and they’ve also been working hard to develop their product to be one of the best options – especially with the new SL-1000s. If you want to check them out you can head to the Shredlights website via this link: https://shredlights.com?aff=205 and if you use the code: mahyar you will receive 10% off your order.
This is something some riders can do without, but I find I always need some form of eyewear to ride my electric longboard. You can ignore this element if your helmet comes with goggles or a visor for example, but otherwise, I would highly recommend getting a pair of glasses, sunglasses, and/or goggles for riding. This is especially useful if you have a board that has a high top speed. Eyes can dry out causing you to tear up making it difficult to see, dirt or insects could get into your eye while riding. Although this may not be common it does happen. Especially if someone is riding or driving ahead of you on a dirt road for example. Keep in mind the reason why I suggest having regular glasses and sunglasses is that the sunglasses are not useful at all for night rides so you want something that has no tint to it when you are riding during darker hours of the day. This is an item most riders tend to not consider before going on their first ride and realizing that they can’t keep their eyes open at higher speeds so make sure you use something right away. That being said, I have had riders tell me they don’t use any eyewear or eye protection and they don’t have the same issues with their eyes tearing up as mine does at the higher speeds.
I hope I’ve provided you with a basic idea of the safety gear you would want to have to start your electric longboarding journey. If you already ride but do not use some of the items I’ve listed I highly suggest you try to do so in order to help prevent all sorts of injuries. Is there anything you use as safety equipment that I may have missed or didn’t consider? Let me know what you think in the comments and tell me what safety gear you use while riding your electric longboard.
Article by: Mahyar Saeedi