If you’re after a set of pedalling-friendly pads and don’t have much to spend, the Paragons are well worth a look. Obviously at this price you don’t get fancy foam that hardens upon impact, but the thick polyurethane knee cup is shaped to fit your knee, perforated to let heat escape and meets CE safety standards.
There are no straps to hold the pads up – instead they rely on a stretchy mesh sleeve and elasticated cuffs. We found the bottom cuffs of our large test samples (they come in four sizes) a good fit but the top cuffs gaped open and were prone to slipping down slightly. Thankfully the knee cups themselves stayed put, thanks to the pads’ pre-curved shape and lines of silicone gripper.
Comfort is good, even during extended stints in the saddle, with the pads quickly adapting to the shape of our legs and resulting in no chafing. The loose upper cuffs did sometimes cause minor bunching behind the knee, making things a bit sweaty, but that’s nothing serious and wouldn’t put us off the Paragons. At this price they’re a steal, and Alpinestars do an elbow version too, for a fiver less.