Sportswear giant ticked off over bikers’ footwear

A major sportswear retailer has been heavily criticised after it ran an advert that showed motorcyclists badly dressed for riding.

The ad for JD Sports featured professional stunt riders pulling tricks, and had them cruising the streets in trainers and jeans, despite such gear being inappropriate for motorcyclists.

Concerns were raised as to how these images would be received by impressionable younger riders, too many of whom are currently not getting the message that they need to wear good-quality riding gear to protect themselves in the event they hit the asphalt.

One critic posting on JD Sport’s Facebook account pointed out that

“so many youngsters think it’s ok to ride in trainers and tech pants… it’s sooo not!”

Trainers don’t offer the grip riders need and can easily slip off the pedals in an emergency. They also offer little or no protection for the toes, ankles or soles of the feet.

The advice is always to wear sturdy boots with strong soles and at least ankle support. These can prevent life-changing injuries in the event of your feet ramming into the floor hard. See more here

There was also concern that the riders were wearing standard trousers, when biker safety groups always recommend reinforced jeans or trousers which offer protection at the knees, thighs and hips.

Paul Morgan from the British Motorcyclists Federation said:

"Proper motorcycle boots with reinforced features, that provide adequate protection to the foot and ankle of the rider, are crucial to minimise injuries in the case of accidents.


"Casual shoes and trainers are entirely inappropriate for riding motorcycles and are likely to shred or slip off in the event of an accident, causing significant injury to the rider."

Tony Campbell, chief executive of the Motorcycle Industry Association, said:

"It is difficult to comprehend how an organisation like JD Sports can get this so wrong on many levels."

The company defended the ad, saying it featured “professionally trained riders on roads closed to the public during filming, or indoors.

"This followed our health and safety team conducting a rigorous risk assessment that was shared with the riders, to ensure maximum safety.”

Listen to the experts, not the sportswear firm. Never ride in trainers; they don’t offer the grip or protection you need. Always ride in strong boots with stiffened ankle support and rigid soles.

If you don’t want to go full leathers, reinforced biking jeans/trousers and jackets that look like ordinary streetwear are readily available, and could save you from serious injury.

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