What Are The Best MTB Knee Pads in 2021?

TL;DR – In a hurry and just want to know what are the best MTB knee pads? I recommend the Alpinestars Men's Paragon Knee Guard, Black/Yellow, Large as your best option. The five top options available are (in my opinion):

Safety is one of the biggest problems issues that any person needs to take into account when mountain biking. You might be an excellent rider, but we all have those moments that we do fall and this can due to a lapse in concentration or perhaps even an issue that is related to the bike itself, but protection is a must in the modern world. You need the good knee pads!

Whilst riding, we have seen many people fall to the ground and injure themselves. Many of these injuries were unforeseen and could have been avoided with the right padding. Unlike road cycling, you don’t need to reduce the weight or focus on making yourself aerodynamics, which makes the quality knee pads an excellent investment.

In this article, we take a deeper look at some of the best rated mountain bike knee pads and many of the features they include that will help you stay protected. Simply choosing the first one you see is not always the right way to go and you might not have the same quality protection, but with the top knee pads, you will definitely see a difference.

Best MTB Knee pads On the Market Today

Knee pads are pretty straightforward, but modern technology has made them a little different for each person. With the ergonomic fit playing a massive role, you can see some of the key features that we have chosen for these knee pads.

best mountain bike knee pads
Source. Canva Premium

However, we are starting out with the top knee pads themselves for now:

Alpinestars Paragon Knee Guard – Top Pick

Alpinestars Men's Paragon Knee Guard, Black/Yellow, Large
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Made from a combination of polyester, polyurethane, and spandex, the Alpinestars Paragon Knee Guard is one of the elite options that you can find. Not only does it cover a large part of your leg, but the protection bracket has been increased to help cover the shin as well and taking a lot of strain of your leg itself.

It features an ergonomic design that bends around the knee without causing any comfort issues for the rider. With a lightweight feeling, the knee pad works well when adding to the level of comfort. Once you wear it for a couple of hours, you won’t even notice that it is still there, but it will protect you when you accidentally fall.

One of the downsides is that you might have a couple of issues with sizing. Once you do find the right size, it should hold up well, but we have seen many complaints of people accidentally buying sizes that are too small. This could lead to tears in the mesh that is supposed to provide you with additional ventilation when riding.

With the price being so low and the comfort level so high, it is no surprise to see that these knee pads have become so popular. We also like the basic design that should hold up well and ensure that you have the best comfort.

It is at the top of our list of the best mountain bike knee pads for a reason and stands true as the number one pick for even professionals.

  • Lightweight
  • Ergonomic design
  • Reasonably priced
  • Adequate ventilation
  • Sizing can be a little off

Alpinestars Men's Paragon Knee Guard, Black/Yellow, Large
  • 300 grams weight
  • Breathable construction
  • Compression fit

Fox Racing Launch Pro MTB Knee Guard – Editor’s Choice

Fox Racing Launch Pro MTB Knee Guard
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Fox is definitely one of the top brands when it comes to quality. The Fox Racing Launch Pro MTB Knee Guard is one of their best designs and it offers some definite protection for all riders.

Made from silicone, neoprene, and plastic, the durability is one of the highest we have seen so far and it holds up for high-speed crashes. According to Fox, it does have an ergonomic fit and it has been pre-curved to ensure that you have even more comfort. The hard plastic shell adds to the overall durability, while the neoprene is added to ensure the best possible ventilation. For the weight, it is actually light enough that you won’t feel it after some time.

One of the downsides is the fact that these knee pads do feel a little bulky. You might need to spend some time getting used to them when you have bought them. However, once you have surpassed the point of getting used to them, they will feel natural and part of your cycling equipment. You might also enjoy adding the stylish elbow pads.

The price also seems to be a little expensive, but Fox is one of the leading brands and they do put a lot of effort into their products. The sizing seems to be on point, but you will need to ensure you buy the right size to have the work best.

We would recommend them for high-risk situations that could require some extra protection.

  • Extremely durable
  • Reasonable weight
  • Ventilation is good
  • Ergonomic fit
  • The feel a little bulky

Fox Racing Launch Pro MTB Knee Guard
  • Silicone gripper behind the knee to keep the pad in place
  • Perforated neoprene for breathability
  • Pre-curved ergonomic fit
  • Elastic strapping top and bottom to keep the pad in place
  • Available in sizes Small/Medium, which fits thighs between 14.5" - 16" and calves 13.5" - 15", and Large/X-Large, which fits thighs between 16" - 17.5" and calves 15" - 16.5".

Demon Hyper X D30 Mountain Bike Knee Pads

Demon Hyper X D30 Mountain Bike Knee Pads | BMX | MX | Snowboard D3O Knee Pad

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The Demon Hyper X D30 Mountain Bike Knee Pads are some of the best looking kneepads and they are the perfect combination of the two previous options. The knee pads have been constructed from neoprene and Kevlar that helps to reduce some of the shocks and also spikes up the overall durability of the pads.

The neoprene has been added to ensure you have the best ventilation possible. This makes it possible to easily ride longer distances without having to constantly put them on or take them off in the heat. On the inside, you have Kevlar that has been designed with foam inserts. This will not only keep your knee protected, but also absorb some of the shocks.

You might notice that the sizing does run a little small and this could be frustrating for many of the larger riders. If you are in need of a larger kneepad, you will have to let the company know that you need a custom pair.I would go for the custom selection, as the design looks really stylish and will definitely make you stand out.

Much Like Fox, these knee pads tend to be a little on the expensive side and this could be problematic for many riders. However, they are not designed for beginners, but mostly for professionals who need to have some high-impact protection.

We would recommend them for competitions and advanced professional riders.

  • Stylish design
  • Includes shock absorption
  • Lightweight
  • Extremely durable
  • Ergonomic fit
  • Sizing runs a little small

Demon Hyper X D30 Mountain Bike Knee Pads | BMX | MX | Snowboard D3O Knee Pad
  • FOR A MORE COMFY FIT CHOOSE THE NEXT SIZE UP FROMYOUR MEASUREMENTS'- THESE WILL FIT TIGHT *Demon Hyper X D3O V3 Knee pad is the perfect option for mountain biking, snowboarding, and any other high impact activities. Built for comfort, built to last.
  • Impact Protection: Integrated with a Kevlar front panel for complete abrasion resistance and D3O high performance shock absorbing foam.
  • Comfort: Dual hook and loop straps, soft terry cloth interior and additional padding on the inside and outside make the Demon Hyper X knee pad extrmely comfortable.
  • Venting: Built with perforated neoprene to allow for maximum ventilation.
  • Warranty: Backed by the Demon United quality guarantee. Built tough.

RaceFace Ambush Guard – Best High-End Kneepad

RaceFace Ambush Guard

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The RaceFace Ambush Guard can easily be seen as one of the best knee pad options on the market today. I have been originally designed for motocross, but many mountain bike riders love the combination of neoprene and other lightweight materials that make this knee pad standout as one of the very best.

Much like the previous model, the D30 foam has been inserted for the design and this will certainly help to make the better when it comes to absorbing shock. It features an open back construction, allowing you to put them on without removing your shoes, while the ventilation from the neoprene makes them comfortable to use all day.

Unfortunately, these are the most expensive knee pads on this list. However, they are worth the price. Once you start riding with them, you will notice how comfortable they feel.

RaceFace has also backed them up with a decent warranty to give you some peace of mind. We would recommend them for competition purposes.

  • Extremely durable
  • Open back design makes them easier to put on
  • Shock absorbing D30 foam added
  • Ergonomic design
  • Really expensive

RaceFace Ambush Guard
  • Perforated Neoprene enhances venting and moisture control
  • Terry lined for wicking and comfort
  • Foam padded side walls offer additional coverage
  • Branded rubber grab tabs
  • Race Face Ambush Knee Guard has a open-back construction

Leatt AirFlex Pro Adult Knee Guard

Leatt AirFlex Pro Knee Guard (Black, Large)

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Last but certainly not least, we have the Leatt AirFlex Pro Adult Knee Guard that has been designed to give you overall comfort and versatility. At only 6mm thick, these are some of the most comfortable knee pads when it comes to reducing weight and giving you the freedom you need to have a comfortable ride all day long.

For protection, Armourgel will mold to the shape of your knee while providing you with excellent shock absorption. Moisture Cool Technology is used for wicking away sweat and any moisture, with silicone used to add more protection and ensure that the knee guard itself will remain in place. With so much technology being added to this knee pad, it might be a little expensive for many people, but you won’t find as much value for your money anywhere else.

Since these knee pads are designed for all riders, we would highly recommend them to every beginner and intermediate riders. They can also be used for other outdoor sports.

  • Extremely durable
  • Really lightweight
  • Shock absorption technology
  • Provides great ventilation
  • Pricey

Leatt AirFlex Pro Knee Guard (Black, Large)
  • Super slim 6mm protector profile
  • Armourgel ultra slim impact absorbing gel
  • MoistureCool wicking fabric | Silicone lamination to keep protector in place
  • CE certified for impact protection EN1621-1
  • Extra top and side padding for greater protection (Pro only)

Key Features To Consider When Choosing MTB Knee Pads

By now, you might have seen that knee pads aren’t as straight forward as many people would like to think. However, there are a few basic things and features that you should keep in mind when you are selecting your next set.

Here are a couple of the top features that we would recommend you look for in the right knee pads for your needs:


If you buy knee pads, your main goal is your own protection and you will need to take this seriously at all times. If the materials are weak, you won’t have the same protection and durability as someone willing to spend a little more on the durability. Polyurethane and plastic are some of the key materials that are generally used for the knee pad itself and it should add a lot to the overall durability.

Comfort and Sizing

The size of the knee pads and the design are the direct contributors to the comfort level. Since you will be wearing these knee pads for prolonged periods of time, you need to make sure they are comfortable. Many brands cater to smaller individuals and we have found a common trend of the sizing running a little small for most users.

Additionally, you can look for an ergonomic fit that simply means the knee pad meets the needs of the average human being. By having an ergonomic fit, you will eliminate the break-in period and the knee pads should comfortable mold around your knee. This works well when pedalling and when you need to bend your knee.


As we have already mentioned, you will be using these knee pads for prolonged periods when riding and sweat will eventually start building up. To help eliminate sweat, you need to look for materials that will provide some sort of ventilation. Mesh is one, but it can lack some durability, whereas neoprene is useful for the durability and ventilation it offers.


While having a good knee cup to keep you protected is vital, you can also look to have some sort of additional protection like foam inserts. D30 foam is good for the versatility and shock absorption properties. However, we have seen that many brands also use gel for the ability to conform to the knee and provide a much more comfortable feeling.


We would like to thank you for reading this article and encourage you to share some of your thoughts on the knee pads we have selected. Let us know in the comment section which of them you have used and if we might have missed any of your favorite MTB knee pads.