KALI STRIKE KNEE GUARD REVIEW
Review by Nic Hall
Photos by Dusten Ryen
Although Kali Protectives may be better known for their helmets, the brand’s quest to create top-notch protective should easily translate to other applications, like these thin, pedal-friendly knee pads. The Kali Strike knee pads are the brands all-around trail guard, and are geared towards being comfortable on long climbs and epic days in the saddle, or ripping hot laps on your favorite descents. After lots of hours pedaling and riding this spring, we’re happy to add the Kali Strike pads to our regular rotation and share our review.
Designed with all day pedals and comfort in mind, the Kali Strike pads have a breathable mesh sleeve that supports an anatomically molded visco-elastic main pad with EVA side protection. to further aid in comfort and breathability, a large cut out has been placed behind the knee.
The main pad is a honeycomb-shaped visco-elastic material that Kali calls Xelion. The material stiffens on impact but remains more pliable and comfortable while pedaling or walking. The side of knee protection is EVA foam and placed in impact areas around the sides of the knee thigh. Silicone grip strips have been added on the top and bottom of the pad to limit slipping and an elastic band with a Velcro fastener locks the pad in place on the upper thigh.
The best knee pad is the one you can keep on your knee and the Kali Strike knee guard does just that. We were able to pedal all day in these without rub or chaffing on the pad or back of our knees. The silicone strips keep the pad generally in place on the ride up and the Velcro strap can really lock them in for the descent. Even under pants, the Strike pads stay in place.
Protection is as good or better than most pedal friendly knee pads we have tested, on par with offerings from G-Form and the Leatt Airflex Pro, which we are very partial to. The main pad is both pre-formed to fit your knee, while staying super soft even in freezing temps. Airflow is top notch with large perforations throughout the main pad. Coverage area is moderate, from the top of the knee to the very top of the shin. In this style pad, we would not want much more. The few times we did take a spill, we did not suffer any lasting injuries and the side protection did a good job keeping bruising and trail rash at bay.
We have found that some pedal specific pads do not last through washing, trail riding, and pulling the pads on and off. The Kali Strike had none of these issues, even the Velcro feels good as new after months of testing. In fact we intentionally put these through extra abuse to speed up the wear and tear to see if anything would arise so we could test our Kali’s 3-year warranty.
If you are in the market for a sturdy set of pedal-friendly knee pads that still offers a high level of protection, the Kali Strike is worth trying on. We still have not found anything we don’t like about the Strike for trail rides and the peace of mind that comes from a 3-year warranty is an added plus. The Kali Strike knee pads are comfortable enough for long pedals, have great protection, and are built to last.
Disclosure: Our team selects all of the products we review and do so with honesty and objectivity in mind. Some of the products we receive come directly from Competitive Cyclist, who also value our readers and have offered them a 15% discount (exclusions apply) on their first purchase by using LOAMWOLF15. Through this program we may also receive a small commission at no cost to you. Thanks for your support, TLW.