The different types of gloves
There are several categories of MotoGP leather gloves on the market, each with its own specificities.
Urban gloves, with a well-worked aesthetic side, offer less protection because speeds in urban areas are much lower than on the road or on the track. They, therefore, allow you to move around while going unnoticed: the leather is refined, the reinforcement shells are (almost) invisible and they remain very light.
Racing gloves whose watchwords are performance, protection, and flexibility! Used mainly on the track and in competition, they offer a high level of protection (rigid shells, multiple reinforcements, etc.) to compensate for falls.
Very thin and very light, all-terrain gloves are recognizable among all the others. Intended for sports use, these gloves focus on breathability and protection. The reinforcement shells nevertheless remain very discreet to allow free movement to the pilot.
Summer gloves whose main characteristic is their lightness. Anyone who rides in the summer will tell you that a pair of light and well-ventilated gloves are never too much! For this, they are often made from ventilated textile while including reinforced areas to ensure your protection. Without good ventilation, you will not be protected from the weather and risk ending up with wet hands.
Categorized between summer and winter gloves, mid-season gloves offer minimal insulation but remain well waterproof.
Winter gloves have linings with insulating properties as well as variable thicknesses in certain areas. The objective is to limit heat loss in winter. They also protect you from the weather with a waterproof membrane. All these specificities have a price: the weight or even the thickness of these gloves have an impact on the handling of the controls, for example…
When temperatures approach or drop below 0°C, you will appreciate the comfort provided by a pair of heated gloves. These gloves are equipped with resistors on the back of your hands that connect to the electrical circuit of your motorcycle. Power can also be supplied by an independent battery. Some models even have a thermoregulation system to adapt the heat level automatically.
Focus on heated motorcycle gloves
There are two main categories of heated gloves: wired gloves and battery-powered gloves. Heated gloves provide warmth to the backs of your hands. As far as the palms are concerned, it will be necessary to turn to heated grips.
Connected to the motorcycle battery, wired gloves have a very long battery life since they are directly connected to the motorcycle. However, you will lose freedom of movement, especially when you need to get out of your vehicle, for example.
Conversely, battery gloves do not need to be connected to the motorcycle; you can therefore use them for an activity other than motorcycling (some use them for skiing, for example). With this type of gloves, as with the Furygan Heat Blizzard gloves, your freedom of movement will not be hindered but your autonomy will be lower than that of wired heated gloves. They must therefore be charged regularly for them to be effective during use. It takes between 3 to 5 hours for a full charge. Placed inside the gloves, the battery may be unpleasant during the first use but will quickly be forgotten over time.
Corded battery gloves: a perfect compromise?
These gloves are supplied with a battery and a connection cable. This allows you to alternate depending on the type of trip: for a short trip, battery-powered gloves will be the most practical; for long journeys, wired gloves will prevent you from unloading and will therefore ensure the effectiveness of your gloves throughout your journey.
The heated gloves have a control button to vary the level of heating. This button also tells you when the battery is low.
The so-called “classic” gloves provide different levels of heat:
– Level 1 glove heat up to a temperature of 40°C (ideal for outside temperatures above 5°C).
– Level 2 gloves heat up to a temperature of 50°C (ideal for temperatures ranging from 0 to 5°C).
– Level 3 gloves can heat up to more than 60°C (ideal for negative temperatures).
There are also thermoregulated gloves: they work via a smartphone application (for example, the Clim8 application from Ixon) and allow you to set a certain temperature on which the heating system will be based. In short: the system will adapt to outside temperatures to keep your hands at the level of heat you have chosen.
Budget level, it is necessary to count between 100 to 300€ for the purchase of a pair of heated gloves. The price of course depends on the material, the charging system, etc.
Standard gloves and heated gloves remain very similar, whether in terms of weight, handling of the control system, or even thickness.
Like all the rest of your biker gear, heated gloves deserve maintenance. We advise you not to put them in the washing machine even if they are waterproof, especially if they are made of leather. For the outer part of your gloves, use a damp cloth to clean them. After a while, you can use a waterproofing spray to ensure they are waterproof.
Characteristics and certification of motorcycle gloves
If you ride in all seasons, it is advisable to have several pairs of gloves so that you can change them according to weather conditions and usage. In winter, opt for waterproof gloves with long cuffs. A tightening system will allow you to adjust the gloves to your wrists and thus prevent the infiltration of fresh air. Mid-season, the insulating properties of winter gloves will become uncomfortable. Opt more for gloves with only rain protection. For the summer season, you can opt for lightweight, well-ventilated gloves with a low cuff.
If you opt for fairly thin summer gloves, you will need to choose them as close as possible to your skin. To ensure adequate cold resistance, winter gloves are thicker. In case you want to wear a pair of under-gloves, it is better to take a size above your usual size.
The first step in your choice is often based on the choice of material. Motorcycle gloves are made from leather or textile. The leather used for the manufacture of motorcycle gloves remains very flexible and is very resistant to abrasion. Textile will also provide you with some protection; and will prove to be more efficient in the face of bad weather than leather.
Flexibility does not always rhyme with a high level of abrasion resistance. In fact, on the sportiest gloves, flexibility is not the main feature… For most other gloves, flexibility is based on elastic areas to facilitate your movements on a motorcycle. The comfort felt also depends on the insulating properties of the gloves: the material must make it possible to limit heat loss as much as possible, especially in winter. However, some will opt for additional comfort with a pair of heated gloves, for example. The presence of a waterproof membrane under the outer material will not allow water to seep inside your gloves. A highly breathable Gore-Tex membrane will prevent you from riding with wet hands. The rain will therefore only be a very bad memory!
The budget to devote to the purchase of a pair of gloves will depend on the use: everyday bikers will necessarily spend more on the purchase than occasional bikers. For beginner riders, a limited budget will be enough time to better define your needs and riding habits. Experienced riders will be able to invest more quickly in a pair of mid-range or high-end gloves.
Certificate and Protection
Level of protection:
In terms of safety, the most protective material will remain leather. It protects your hands in the event of a fall on the asphalt from shocks that can be more or less important. Textile gloves are often lighter and more flexible than leather gloves. For more safety, it is preferable to opt for abrasion-resistant gloves with reinforcements (reinforced palms and reinforced knuckles). The reinforcement shells at the knuckles are generally made of plastic or carbon. Whether rigid or flexible, the purpose of the reinforcement shells is to withstand the waves and therefore limit potential injuries. On many models, the areas most exposed to shocks are reinforced with additional seams. On sports gloves, a piece of leather is usually sewn between the ring finger and the little finger to protect your fingers from twisting. Although it is not always appreciated by some bikers, the main purpose of the cuff is to protect you in bad weather conditions (cold, rain, etc.). The cuffs are therefore generally longer on winter and mid-season gloves than on summer gloves. With a special tightening system on the cuff, the gloves stay in place, do not tear off, and therefore offer you resistance and protection (especially on the wrists and forearms). Note also that they are mandatory for competitions. The possibility of adjusting the gloves thanks to the Velcro tabs at the wrists is another important criterion. A pair of gloves in which you “float” will not give you any protection.
Wearing motorcycle gloves has been compulsory since November 20, 2016: beware of those who do not want to comply with the legislation…
Since 2013, candidates for the motorcycle license must take the exam with certified PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) equipment. CE certification has also been essential since 2016. Certified gloves must therefore be CE and PPE classified. Gloves that do not have CE labeling (lightweight gloves without reinforcement shells, cross-country gloves, for example) could cost you a fine of €68 and a point during an inspection (€45 if you pay within fifteen following days). The fine also applies to the passenger if he does not comply with the legislation.
Motorcycle gloves are currently subjected to several tests to certify their resistance to abrasion, bursting, tearing, cutting, or tearing. In addition to certification, some gloves are even subject to the EN 13594:2015 standard, an additional guarantee of safety. This standard aims to position the different pairs of gloves among three levels of protection:
– Level 1 glove has an abrasion resistance of 4 seconds.
– Level 1KP gloves offer additional protective shells at the phalanges compared to level 1.
– Level 2KP gloves also offer protective shells but an abrasion resistance of 8 seconds.
This standard, therefore, certifies a sufficient level of protection for your hands in the event of a fall.
In order to know if your pair of gloves is standardized or not, you just need to check the presence of the CE logo, and the biker pictogram. Protection levels may also appear on this label.