At SportsProtective, we only sell products from companies who are committed to rider safety. It is a promise we made to our buyers years ago. If you are going to ride, we want to be the source you turn to in order to make sure you’re protected.
One brand that had come into the forefront of rider safety is Leatt. No brand prides itself on testing and their results more than Leatt.
In 2001, Dr. Chris Leatt was at a racetrack with his son, who was new to racing, when he witnessed a traumatic incident that laid the foundation for the Leatt brand we know and wear today. A fellow rider, Alan Selby, crashed and died of what was suspected neck injuries. The same types of injuries that Leatt neck braces help to protect their customers from today. This event changed course for Dr. Chris Leatt, and he created the first neck brace prototype in 2003 and received his first U.S. patent in 2007. Since then, Leatt has not only created and distributed protective neck braces across several sports markets including bicycle but has gained a notable portion of the market share in the neck brace space.
One thing that sets Leatt apart from others is their rigorous and continuous testing process. Leatt prides itself on checking and rechecking its work and not only wants to be trusted about neck brace protection but be the authoritative voice in it.
Their testing process is painstaking, and they do not cut corners. In fact, Dr. Chris Leatt has dedicated a lab with full-time engineers, scientists and lab staff to continuously test and produce different data. Leatt has even partnered with BMW and KTM to develop tests that realistically show the benefits of wearing a Leatt neck brace. The videos below discuss the Leatt testing process and procedure in more detail.
Something that we found interesting, however, was just how notable Leatt’s results are compared to the results when no neck brace is worn.
When it comes to neck injuries, there are five extreme movements that can cause a severe neck injury. Leatt testing is designed to measure the % reduction in forces when comparing a rider with a Leatt neck brace and a rider without protection. The movements are below:
• Hyperflexion- extreme bending of the head/neck forward (40% of all neck injuries)
• Hyperextension- extreme bending of the head/neck backwards.
• Lateral Hyperflexion – extreme sideways bending of the head/neck
• Posterior Hypertranslation – extreme rear movement of the head on the neck
• Axial loading- compression of the spine, often found in diving injuries
According to their findings, a Leatt neck brace can reduce forces associated with hyperextension (head rolls backward) up to 46% during a potential impact. This is a very impressive test finding. That is nearly cutting harmful forces in half. These forces could potentially be the difference between serious injury and walking away from an incident without serious harm.
The other test findings are listed in the graph below.
Every movement saw a reduction of up to at least 17% when wearing a Leatt neck brace. Leatt's critical test findings support the belief that a Leatt neck brace might make the difference in the event of an accident.
Nothing is full proof, and no product or company can guarantee a certain level of protection when wearing their equipment or gear. Leatt, however, is doing all it can to show that their products can do some good for buyers.