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It's almost motorcycle riding season again, and riders should have the best information on personal protective gear. This article will focus on personal protective gear and how to sign up for the upcoming Motorcycle Safety Training Courses.

Personal Protective Gear

Helmets

The most important piece of protective gear you can wear is a helmet manufactured to meet Department of Transportation standards. There was a study done at the University of Southern California called "The Hurt Report," which essentially documented the use of helmets and protective gear in 900 motorcycle crashes.

This report established that helmets saved lives by reducing the occurrence of head injuries. It also documented that wearing a helmet did not reduce essential vision or hearing which has been an aurgument of many motorcyclists who do not like wearing helmets.

Face Protection

"The Hurt Report" found that riders who wore helmets with shields covering their faces suffered fewer facial injuries than those without. Helmets with full-face coverage with strong chin pieces and energy-absorbing liners were also especially effective in reducing facial injuries. Windshields, eyeglasses and goggles simply did not offer as much face protection as a full-face helmet.

Footwear

The best footwear is sturdy, over-the-ankle boots that can protect you from a variety of riding hazards. They can protect against burns from hot exhaust pipes and flying road debris.

Gloves

Gloves that fit properly will improve your grip on the handlebars. Gloves should also be full-fingered motorcycle gloves to protect hands from blisters, sun, wind and cold. Motorcycle gloves are available in many styles, weights and thicknesses.

Jackets, Pants

"The Hurt Report" found that covering the body with leather or an abrasion-resistant fabric also provides a high level of injury protection. Other types of materials in this category were Cordura, Kevlar or ballistic nylon. Protective apparel designed specifically for motorcycling will afford the best combination of comfort and protection.

Did you know that more than half of all fatal motorcycle crashes involve another vehicle and most of the time, the motorist, not the motorcyclist, is at fault? Because of its small size, a motorcycle can be easily hidden in a car's blind spot.

To find out more information on how to stay safe as a motorcycle rider, log on to www.msf-usa.org or www.navymotorcyclerider.com.