Skateboarding is physically and mentally challenging for all age groups. To excel you need balance and a willingness to take risks. But, with risks even for the most well-seasoned pros there is a chance of collision.
The skateboarding category placed as the fourth most frequent sports-related injury between 2013-2020 in the NCS’s latest injury review.
So, no – elbow pads may not look cool. But, neither does recovering from surgery while your friends are out having fun on their skateboards. Whether you are carving out concrete for the first time, trialing a new trick, or teaching your children, safety should always come first. Even if you aren’t interested in competing and are just cruising around town.
Here we take a full in-depth look at the best elbow pads skateboarding offers, your most frequently asked questions and a full buying guide before you take the plunge
The 7 Best Skateboard Elbow Pads
You can’t be fully aware of your surroundings all of the time, unfortunately. So the right elbow protectors for elbow protection are absolutely worth their weight in gold when showing off your latest trick.
Wearing elbow pads can help to protect your exposed arms from bruises, cuts, elbow pain, and even broken bones when that inevitable fall does come. But with so many varying styles, designs, and usage options available to purchase, it is far too easy to get bogged down and make the wrong order.
Deciding which pads to buy is hard enough, let alone trying to figure out the difference between them. So, we look here at the differentiating features of our seven favorite skateboard elbow pads so you can make the best-informed choice possible.
Triple 8 EP 55 Elbow Pads: a mid-range heavy-duty all-rounder design
Triple 8 is a well-established urban skateboarding brand born in the ’90s in New York City, which shows up in their black and red aesthetic. Their classic look EP 55 Elbow Pads are arguably some of the best skateboarding elbow pads around.
The protective elbow pads feature a high-density impact-resistant tortoise style cap and a heavy-duty Eva foam interior, as well as top and bottom adjustable straps. Plus, they are the Best Skateboard Elbow Pads sold at a mid-range price point.
These skate elbow pads are constructed using a nylon sleeve and include extra padding to combine comfort with practical everyday use. While a very comfortable feature of the product, it is worth noting that the memory foam does require some time to adjust to your elbow shape once purchased.
But, this is exactly what makes the product ideal for frequent skateboarders who require that extra bit of use and elbow protection. All the more so if you have a high fall frequency, or have developed more sensitive limbs over the years.
DEMON UNITED Hyper X D3O Elbow Pads
A high-end ergonomic finish complete with engineered fabrics Popular sporting brand Demon United began life with their invention of the Stomplock in California in the late ’90s. In the decades since these guys have branched out internationally with their ergonomic designs.
The Hyper X D30’s exterior fabric shield is formed from a super-strong heat-resistant synthetic kevlar material. This is what allows these Best Skateboard Elbow Pads to have a racy metallic patterned finish, which conceals inside their high-density
interior plastic cap. Inside these elbow pads is a high-performing shock-absorbing foam (T5 CE EN) cushion and a perforated neoprene interior fabric for breathability. Rather than just use Velcro adjustable straps, these pads also incorporate an elastic strap for extra comfort that helps the pads stay in place for impacts.
187 Killer Pads Elbow Pads: an upper mid-range with quality protection
Born in a family-run upholstery shop, 187 Killer Pads are a relatively new brand that is endorsed by many of skateboarding’s top-performing athletes. Many consider these to be the elbow pads skateboarding pros use. These black skateboard elbow pads are designed for action-loving athletes, offering a high level of comfort and protection with an absorbent flexible foam system and streamlined design.
The product fits onto your elbows using standard Velcro straps and is available in a range of sizes. Meanwhile, the exterior is made from ballistic nylon and is kept together with industrial-weight stitching for extra durability.
Kids Sports Protective Gear Set - 6PCS Wrist Guard Knee Pads: the best youth skateboard pads
This complete set of children’s protective skateboarding pads gets great reviews from parent purchasers and at the lower end of the skateboard elbow pads price range is very affordable. The kit comes in a small fabric mesh bag and includes elbow pads, knee pads, and wrist pads for all-round coverage.
This particular protective gear set features a hard outer shell, absorbent foam middle, and a soft interior lining, and is available in bright green, royal blue, or classic black. All your child will need on top of this is a good quality helmet, plus a skateboard, and you’re off. While this will produce not offer any use to professional skateboarders, parent skateboarders will enjoy the comfort of knowing that their 3 to 7 year-olds are covered.
Wosawe Moon love Breathable Elbow Brace Pads: an affordable but futuristic all-rounder
Wosawe supplies an ultra-flexible but affordable futuristic range of black or brightly colored body armor style padding for sports lovers.Their silica gel-padded Breathable Elbow Brace Pad offers users a uniquely wide range of use across multiple sports disciplines, including skateboarding.
This is a one size fits all product in its truest form and it doesn’t shy away from this. It features a flexible elasticized cuff to the inside elbow, a protective eva padded material exterior and a breathable fabric surround for longer periods of use.
The Wosawe team claims that this makes it perfect for most outdoor activities. Their funky design could even be used for a robotic arm Halloween costume if you wanted to. So, this is not going to be suitable for hardcore skateboarders, but it is a great choice for general sports lovers and dabblers.
Pro-Tec Street Knee pads and Elbow Pad Set: a piece of original 70’s protective skateboarding kit
Pro-Tec claim to be the original skateboard protective gear brand, with a history harking back to With nearly 50 years of industry experience, they are considered market leaders in their production standards.
These classic black elbow pads come in a variety of sizes that all include adjustable elastic velcro straps, a perforated eva foam middle, and a durable nylon exterior in addition to a large outer shell. These pads are designed for a great range of movement and they are made to last. This set is therefore surprisingly affordable when compared with more expensive and similar-looking pro products.
Gonex Elbow Pads Knee Pads with Wrist Guards: an affordable but functional elbow Pad
Gonex Sport are an affordable sportswear brand that started life manufacturing backpacks back in 2008 They are currently based in China’s Guandong Province and produce for near enough every sport imaginable.
As such, Gonex have designed this classic turtle shape elbow, wrist and knee pad set for a wide range of uses, including skateboarding and biking. This set of four safety gear is issued in a standard black with adjustable straps and comes complete with a matching mesh carrier bag. Unusually, this product has a velvet interior, which is ideal for those who dislike the standard-issue nylon offered by the majority of other suppliers. This will also be a selling point for skateboarders rolling around in colder climates, as it has greater insulation properties.
Buying Guide: How To Choose Best Skateboard Elbow Pads
Here we look at precisely what factors should you be thinking about prior to purchasing elbow protector skateboard products and why.
For a product that will really last you, watch out for the use of higher grade, thicker plastics, as well as engineered fabrics. Durable products such as these will typically be marketed towards pros. That is because the pros really can put safety products to the ultimate test – their training schedules.
Elbow guard for skating offer a wildly varying range of protection when it comes to the fabrics and plastics used. A higher tensile strength fabric such as kevlar is far more likely to endure a bad fall than say a standard issue nylon. If you’re feeling brave, check out Braille Skateboarding’s excellent ‘Safety Gear Crash Test’ Skate Experiments episode. Just don’t show the kids and do not try this at home!
As with any sport, it is likely that you’ll be sweating at least a bit. So when skateboarding outside for long periods of time, you will want a fabric that allows your skin to expel sweat. However, breathability, unfortunately, does come at the expense of insulation as well as durability with elbow guards for skating. So, if you are trialing some difficult tricks, you may choose to favor one over the other.
A common complaint of elbow pad users is that the product did not fit their arm well enough.Most skateboard elbow pads will come in a variety of sizes, so it is worthwhile measuring yourself prior to ordering. You can also check out this video on sizing. It is also worth looking out for features such as quality foam padding and flexible straps, as this will allow you wear the product for longer periods of time.
The elbow pad that works best around your usage requirements will vary according to your day-to-day priorities. But at the higher price points for this type of protective gear, you will find a higher volume of specialised design features, such as engineered fabrics and concealed caps.
Fit and size
There are a wide range of fits and sizing on offer throughout the various brands.Yet, themost common sizing complaints from elbow pad users tend to be from weightlifters who struggle to find suitably big sizes. If this is you, we’d recommend trialing a number of different products in one go and avoiding the one size fits all ranges.
The very lower end of protective skateboarding gear we’ve seen starts at around £8, but it can go tenfold the price. The average mid-range elbow pad will cost you around £25, whereas a professional-grade pad will come in closer to £80.
Most frequent questions and answers
Should you wear elbow pads for skateboarding?
Given skateboarding’s 4th position on the podium of serious sports-related injuries, we’d strongly recommend wearing elbow pads wherever it is practically possible. Maintaining your limbs will also benefit you as a sportsman in the longer term by saving your skin and joints, knee and elbow.
How do elbow pads protect you?
Elbow pads ensure protection by cushioning your arms. At their most basic level, the fabric outer layer of elbow pads can potentially save you from site-specific cuts and minor bruises. The foam middle layer can also help to absorb the initial collision impact.
The hard plastic shell then takes the brunt of any more serious collisions. Thick padded elbow and knee pads are designed to safeguard your knee and elbow from bruises.
How do you wear elbow guards?
Elbow guards must be worn on the area above and immediately surrounding your elbows. One size fits all products can simply be pulled on, whereas fitted options will often include elasticated velcro straps for a snugger fit. Check out this video on Putting On Your Protective Gear.
Should you get a thick elbow pad or a slim one?
Thicker skate elbow pads will benefit you more for high-impact falls, so if you are trying out lots of tricks or going at high speeds this is a safer option. Slimmer knee and elbow pads are generally considered to be easier to wear, but are much less efficient and generally will be more likely to break.
Do skateboard elbow pads work for longboarding?
Longboards are considered to be more stable and easier to use than a standard skateboard overall. But, longboarders are also able to reach greater speeds than skateboarders. So, elbow pads for longboarding should always be checked against the manufacturer’s recommended use.
Do You Need Additional Protective Gear Other Than Elbow Pads?
When it comes to additional protective gear we’d say the more the merrier. Wrist guards, elbow pads, knee protectors and helmets are all typically worn together as standard. But find the best skateboard helmets, knee and elbow pads for you. Don’t be that guy/girl who broke their bone from a minor fall!
Key takeaways for elbow guard skating Elbow pads are an important piece of safety equipment that every rider should be wearing. Thankfully, you can find quality elbow guards skating around in many forms, fabrics and price points. There is truly an elbow pad out there for everyone. So when shopping around consider factors such as durability, comfort and breathability.
Ultimately, the product that you choose to purchase must fit in with your lifestyle and make sense for you personally, or you simply won’t use Whether that means you end up buying a matching basic bright green set of pads, or a metallic print concealed cap kevlar number, is entirely up to you. Just make sure that the product you go for gets well used and it will be well worth the extra research.