Best Neck Brace for Motocross (November 2019)

Motocross Neck Braces – Protect your Spine!

There is some debate in the dirt bike world about the efficacy of neck braces or neck protectors.  The folks that wear them have confidence that they are making the sport as safe as possible. They are willing to sacrifice some comfort. 

The people that do not wear them argue that they restrict head movement. This would make it harder to sight lines and see the track ahead. This is because a neck braces by design limit the amount of rear movement that your head can make.  Additionally, injuries attributed to wearing a neck brace include broken collar bones.

I personally choose to wear a motocross neck brace for the added protection. I am willing to risk a broken collar bone over a broken neck.

Best Motocross Neck Brace Brands

When searching for neck braces or neck protectors, there are 4 major players.  Alpinestars, Atlas, Leatt, and EVS.  We will be reviewing the offerings of each of these brands. We will provide you with the information that you need to make an informed decision.

Top Motocross Neck Braces for 2019

Below you will find reviews of the top 4 Neck Braces for 2019.  These are in no particular order and range from the least expensive to the premium price point.  

EVS Race Collar R4

EVS Race Collar R4

Dirt Bike Gear Guide

Features
Price

Summary

This is more of a neck roll, not a neck brace and is not going to offer adequate protection for hard core racers.

5

Features and Brief Overview

EVS has designed a neck protector to meet the need of the more cost conscious consumer.  While I would not consider this to be a true neck protector like you will see later in this article, it does provide some protection against spinal compression.

The EVS Sports R4 Race Collar is light weight coming in at just short of 1.5 pounds.  It is designed to be easier to wear for extended periods.

The rear strut is adjustable to allow for the best fit possible. It can be adjusted to work with a chest or roost protector.

Actually putting on the brace is done with a Velcro hook and loop system as well as a plastic lock.  I found this a little awkward to use, and was never quite sure that I had done it correctly. 

The EVS Sports Race Collar is CE approved.

In general, reviews about this neck brace are mixed.  Some people complain about the plastic lock system not working correctly, while others rave about its comfort.  This was the first neck protector that I ever purchased. I ended up replacing it with the Alpinestars Bionic Neck Support.  The reason for this is while I felt comfortable enough when riding, I still didn’t feel like it would give adequate neck support if I were to crash.

Bottom Line

While not a traditional neck brace, it is inexpensive and better than nothing.  If you are looking for an entry level neck protector to wear for a season or two while you are trying out the sport, it is definitely a viable option.

Leatt GPX 5.5

Leatt GPX 5.5

Dirt Bike Gear Guide

Features
Price

Summary

Great option from a trusted brand. You can’t go wrong with Leatt!

4.5

Features and Brief Overview

Leatt is synonymous with motocross protection.  They have a wide range of products including neck braces, knee braces, integrated neck and check protectors, and more.  Their GPX 5.5 Neck Brace made the list of the best motocross neck braces of 2019 due to its overwhelming popularity in both amateur and pro ranks.

The Leatt GPX 5.5 Neck Braces comes in at just over 1.5 pounds and has a foldable rear strut for easier packing.

The rear strut is highly adjustable for the perfect fit, with 4 way adjustability.  Additionally, it has 3 way adjustments on other parts of the neck brace to make sure it fits the rider perfectly.

The neck brace is put on by a push button opening and rotating the bottom of the brace away from the top.  This is an interesting design as most neck braces are opened by splitting the neck brace left to right.  Additionally, this brace has an emergency release mechanism to get the neck brace off of an injured rider.  Clearly, it was designed with motocross racing in mind.

In order to combat one of the most common complains about neck braces, Leatt has designed the GPX 5.5 Neck Brace with collarbone cutouts to reduce the changes of injuring your collar bone in a crash.

The Leatt GPX 5.5 Neck Brace is CE tested and certified as Personal Protective Equipment 89/686/EEC.

The reviews for this neck brace are exceptional.  People tend to love the Leatt product line and become customers for life.  It is used by professional motocross and supercross athletes as well as BMX riders and other sports where neck injuries are common. 

The Bottom Line

Leatt has a wide range of neck protectors.  They are probably the most well known brand in the market.  If you are serious about riding dirt bikes and want a neck protector that will last you many seasons, put the Leatt GPX 5.5 on your shopping list.

Alpinestars Bionic Neck Support Tech 2

Alpinestars Bionic Neck Support Tech 2

Dirt Bike Gear Guide

Features
Price

Summary

This is the neck brace that I wear. Its a great option!

4.3

Features and Brief Overview

Alpinestars is another company that had been in the game for a long time.  When I think of Alpinestars, I primarily think of on-road sports bike apparel, however they have a strong presence in the offroad world.  This year, Alpinestars updated its highly rated Bionic Neck Support (BNS) to the BNS Tech-2. 

The new Bionic Neck Support Tech 2 is aesthetically very similar to the previous versions of the Bionic Neck Support.  The most obvious aesthetic difference is the chin plate design.  This neck brace is constructed from a carbon polymer compound that is designed to divert impact forces away from the neck and spine in the event of a crash.

The rear strut of the neck brace is made up of Alpinestars exclusive progressive force relief design.  This is to help dissipate the force from a crash by directing it across the back and shoulders, away from the spine.  Like the Leatt, this neck brace also includes a quick release to remove it.

One of the nicest features of the Bionic Neck Support line is that it is designed to work with other Alpinestars products.  For example, the Bionic Neck Support can attach to the Bionic Action Jacket, negating the need to wear the neck brace harness.

The BNS Tech 2 is highly adjustable with EVA foam pads that can be interchanged if they don’t fit just right.

Since this is a brand new product for 2019, the first hand reviews are relatively limited.  Alpinestars does not have the market penetration of Leatt as far as neck braces go.  However, if it is anything like the previous version of the Alpinestars then I have no doubt it is an exceptional product.  I personally wear the Bionic Neck Support and love it!

The Bottom Line

If you have other Alpinestars equipment and enjoy the quality, you can expect more of the same from the Bionic Neck Support Tech 2.  The integration with the action jacket, which means that there is no need to wear the strap if you are wearing the jacket is a definite plus.  It is a substantial neck brace and I would not hesitate to buy another one should I need it.

Atlas Air

Atlas Air Neck Brace

Dirt Bike Gear Guide

Features
Price

Summary

If my Alpinestars BNS ever needs replaced, I am replacing it with one of these!

4.5

Features and Brief Overview

Atlas is a company that specializes in offroad protection.  Their product lineup compared to the competition is smaller, but that allows them to specialize in what they do best, protection. 

Atlas is increasingly becoming a major player on the offroad protection scene as people start to try their products out instead of the reliable standby’s like Alpinestars and Leatt.

Of the neck braces on the market, the Atlas Air is the smallest and lightest, it weighs in at 1.3 lbs.  This by no means that it is the least protective.  They just have material where you need it, and none where you don’t. 

The neck brace is made out of a flexible polymer allowing it to have its most impressive feature: unrivaled movement.

The Atlas Air neck brace flexes at the rear, allowing each side of the brace to move independently.  So, when you rotate your shoulders, the brace rotates with you. 

Additionally, the contact points are to the left and right of both the sternum and the spine, allowing for transfer of impact to the larger muscle groups instead of the underlying bones.

The Atlas Air neck brace has “chest suspension” technology which keeps the head in motion longer during a crash, thereby promoting the tuck and roll reflex of most riders.  The chest supports can each move independently and are supported by leaf spring suspension to allow, but head movement during an accident.

This neck brace is very customizable to your specific size, offering 6 different positions to place “smart mounts” that allow you to change the angle position of the neck brace relative to your body. 

To open and close the neck brace, there is an aluminum easy open release.  This makes for a strong, light, and durable release compared to some of the other neck braces on the market.

The anecdotal reviews are outstanding.  People love both the weight and movement that this neck brace allows.  The negative reviews are sporatic and range from not liking the straps that hold the neck brace in place to it not being durable enough to withstand a crash. 

All in all, I would not hesitate to buy this neck protector is I was in the market for a new one and had the money.

The Bottom Line

Atlas is relatively new to the game, but has brought some revolutionary thinking into the design of a neck brace.  I like what I am seeing coming out of the company and it is a definite one to watch.  If flexibility and freedom of movement are of prime importance, the Atlas Air is the neck brace for you.

Neck Brace for Motocross Wrap Up

The decision to wear a neck brace is a personal one.  I fully believe that it helps prevent career ending accidents, even if the trade offs are a broken collar bone or restriction of movement. 

However, I believe that those arguments are slowly losing traction.  With designs like the Leatt collar bone cutouts and the Atlas Air chest suspension, riders are able to get the same movement without having to risk other broken bones. 

As the technology in the neck brace industry advances, I expect to see more and more riders wearing neck braces.

The neck braces listed above go from the most inexpensive option to the premium.  Hopefully this information helps you make your decision clear.  Gear Up, Ride Safe!