Alpinestars Bionic 7 off-road knee brace price, review – Introduction

The Bionic 7 offers more protection for your knees off-road than any ordinary knee guard can manage.

A knee brace is designed to give your knees a higher level of protection than any knee guard can manage. One of the most common forms of injury involved with off-road riding is your knee getting awkwardly twisted or hyperextended. This can happen in the flash of an eye when you simply dab your foot on an uneven surface and the worst-case scenario can result in torn ligaments that often need surgery, physiotherapy and months to heal. I enjoy off-road riding almost as much as I dislike the idea of pain and being immobilised for weeks, so it was time to get a proper pair of knee braces to replace my knee guards.

Knee braces are highly technical, highly expensive items and they are often certified as medical-grade equipment. There are scores of high-end solutions out there, each with its own unique design details and special features.

These Alpinestars Bionic 7 knee braces are renowned for being some of the slimmest and most low-profile options.

Metal inserts limit extension.

For such a large thing that gets strapped to your legs, the Bionic 7s do a great job of staying out of your mind. A fibreglass composite construction helps keep the weight down to about 700gm without compromising structural strength and rigidity. The braces use four numbered straps which help secure them to your leg, but getting the size right in the buying process is crucial. Alpinestars has a size chart that you can refer to before choosing from four different sizes.

The biomechanical hinge system is designed to mimic natural movement by following the articulation of your knee and it feels quite comfortable. The only situation where comfort disappears is if you need to squat down for any reason because the tightly bound straps will dig into your calves and thighs.

The fundamental role of a knee brace is to protect from excessive twisting or extension of the knee. The twisting action is prevented by the rigid structure of the brace as well as the hinge system. The brace is also designed to prevent your knee from hyperextending or getting pulled backwards beyond its natural locking point (just the thought of that…ouch!). If you already have a pre-existing injury you can restrict the amount the brace can extend open by the use of small metal spacers that can create a 5-, 10-, 15-, 20-, 25- or 30-degree extension stop. These are a little fiddly to install, but you won’t be doing it very often, so it’s not a big issue.

Four straps ensure snug fit.

Of course, these braces also need to provide protection against physical impacts, and the sliding knee cap armour is designed to do that job. It doesn’t feel as tough as I’d expect, but I (thankfully) haven’t had a big impact on the knee so far so we’ll hold back on judging how well this works. Overall, the only complaint I have so far is that the inner padding is releasing slightly from the brace. While it is okay now, I may have to look into sticking the padding back in place.

Overall, I’m happy with these braces because they massively up my protection while staying reasonably comfortable. You can also use them on an ADV, but you’ll have to get a wide pair of pants that will fit over them and my regular street pants are too slim to manage that.

These braces aren’t currently available in India, but they retail internationally at around $500 (Rs 41,500) which puts them on par with most rivals. That’s a huge amount of money, but it certainly beats a huge amount of pain and misery. If you’re enthusiastic about your off-road riding, a good set of knee braces like these are worth the investment.


Price: Rs 41,500

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