SixSixOne (661) SubGear long-sleeve body armour £54.99

Subtle protection

BikeRadar score 4/5

SixSixOne's SubGear armour combines Dri-Kool compression-style antimicrobial material with Intella-Foam padding to create a stealthy defence system. With far less bulk than most upper body protection, it’ll fit easily under a jersey and most people won’t even know you’re wearing it.

But that’s not to say this subtle padding doesn’t suck up the hits. Okay, the coverage and protection isn’t quite what you’ll get with the Evo Pressure Suit (especially considering SubGear doesn’t have any back protection), but it’ll still take the sting out of most crashes.

The pads sit roughly in the right places, and the foam seems pretty good at taking an impact. When you crash, the elbow pads have a tendency to twist as much as the Lycra-like top will allow. This isn't much of an issue as the coverage is good, except you do have to twist the pads round again when you've brushed yourself off!

The real point here is if you’re a body armour hater, this will change your mind. The comfort, minimal weight and body hugging fit means there’s no effect on your movement. The material also wicks well and works with a neck brace.

Our only niggle was that the sleeves were a little long. Vest and short-sleeve versions are available, which we think would be slightly more suitable for all-day cross-country rides where you want an extra bit of protection. The price is great, too.

This article was sourced from Mountain Biking UK and What Mountain Bike magazines.

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