With all the time spent by freestyle athletes trying to defy gravity, you would think safety gear would be at the top of their priority lists. Unfortunately, many skateboarders and BMX bikers forgo pads, because the bulk looks uncool and can inhibit performance during competition.
"A lot of the older guys will tell me they really do want to wear pads, but they feel like their friends will say something or they will look weird," says X Games gold medalist and BMX High Air world record holder Kevin Robinson.
After seeing his friends go down with preventable injuries, KRob created Grindz, a line of protective gear that looks cool.
"The most important aspect of my career has always been safety. For me it's simple. Why wouldn't you wear pads?" says KRob. "I would have never achieved my world height record without wearing all the proper safety gear. It disappoints me when I don’t see others taking safety seriously and always making excuses to not wear pads. We created Grindz to eliminate [the excuses] for not wearing protection when getting on your bike or board.”
Made from multi-density moulded padding, Grindz look like everyday pants, but they have pads built into the knee, hip and tailbone areas. Available in denim and charcoal/khaki chinos, Grindz pants remain comfortable by allowing air flow underneath the pads.
"[Athletes] are constantly telling me 'these are the greatest,'" says KRob, "You can't tell you're not wearing regular pants. Parents tell me their kids will go out in them when they aren't even boarding or biking."
According to Robinson, Grindz aren't just for BMXers. They're perfect for any activity where your body can take a beating, "We even have some construction workers buying them," he says. Robinson is currently working on several new products for a cold-weather Grindz line.
Like what you see? Grindz apparel is available for sale at Camp Woodward, Woodward West and Target. Once you grab a pair, let KRob know what you think by tweeting him at @krobbmx or @grindzco.
After you get your new Grindz apparel, learn some new tricks with advice from Kevin Robinson himself.