Background & Intention
Slide gloves are an essential piece of safety equipment for riders of all skill levels. There is great variety in the styles of gloves we wear, ranging from homemade fingerless “half” gloves and Home Depot-esque bear paws to full-finger leather gauntlets with plastic, rubber, and carbon knuckle protection.
Our current Freeride Gloves are designed to maximize breathability and provide the rider with extra wrist support and lightweight impact cushioning on the palms, making them ideal for both the casual freerider and the advancing new slider. On the other end of the spectrum, our Race Gloves feature abrasion resistant leather and heavy duty knuckle protection optimized for the high speed (and sometimes unpredictable) falls characteristic of competitive downhill racing.
Over several years of riding and crashing, our Goldilocks team of downhillers saw the need for a middle ground glove that was “just right” for spirited, weekend warrior endeavors. And thus our new Advanced Freeride Gloves were created to fulfill the needs of the experienced freeride and downhill skateboarder seeking an optimal balance of protection, dexterity, comfort, and breathability in a low profile and minimalist package.
The Advanced Freeride Gloves will be available for $68 in select shops worldwide on Tuesday, February 26, 2013.
Materials & Reinforcement
We began with a form-fitting, full-finger design constructed of supple yet durable goat leather to inspire confidence in both low and high speed riding scenarios. Staying true to the minimalist aesthetic, we eschewed finger and thumb pucks in favor of dual layer leather reinforcement for abrasion resistance in the locations most likely to come in contact with the ground. These leather patches also provide better feel and traction when grabbing the board for predrifts and early grabs. They are attached with single stitching and a surface adhesive that keeps everything together even after you shred your threads. An additional wide patch on the inner edge of the non-articulated thumb protects the seam from damage caused by griptape when carrying the board by the nose.
The large palm loop-side velcro patch maximizes surface contact between the glove and the slide puck and is segmented near the fingers to prevent binding of the stiffer velcro material and improve dexterity when the puck is positioned closer to the heel of the palm.
While carbon fiber or plastic knuckle protectors can provide significant protection in ragdoll crashes, padded reinforcements offer lighter protection in a more flexible and streamlined package. Our knuckle protection uses leather for abrasion resistance, foam to cushion against impact, and a segmented design for enhanced dexterity.
Non-perforated leather offers excellent durability but often compromises breathability. To keep those hands cool and comfortable, our Advanced Freeride Gloves are lined with breathable and moisture wicking COOLMAX mesh. A ventilation window on the upper glove increases airflow without sacrificing protection in high-risk contact points.
Safety & Security
To lock everything down, a long velcro wrist strap tightens the end of the glove around your wrist and is large enough to fit over the cuff of a jacket or leather suit. Durable reflective edging keeps you visible and safe in low light conditions so you can continue throwing it sideways for years to come.