Moxie Gear Shin And Ankle Gaiters
One of the challenges of running trails is keeping the trail debris out of my shoes and finding protection for my shins from the deep vegetation that chokes the trails in Louisiana. I will be using Moxie Gear Shin and Ankle Gaiters for protection over the next few months. Read on for my initial thoughts on the Moxie Gear Shin and Ankle Gaiters.Moxie Gear is an Australian company that was formed out of an adventure racing background of the founder
O They have expanded their line to include shin and ankle gaiters, apparel, paddles and lace guards. I will be reviewing their Ankle and Shin Gaiters over the next few months.
Moxie Gear Shin and Ankle Gaiter
Their best-selling product is an Ankle and Shin Gaiter combo. The combo retails for $75 AUD or about $50 U.S. dollars. The Shin Gaiters feature a full length zipper for easy on and off and have a padded front panel and a lycra stretch back panel. They have a tapered fit – narrow at the ankle and wider at the top of the calf and provide full coverage on me above my calf to the bottom of the knee. They come in small, medium, and large and the Shin Gaiters are also in a slim fit in the small and wide fit in the medium and large sizes. There is a size for every type of person. In addition, there 11 different color combinations to allow the user to customize the Shin Gaiters to fit their particular personality.
The Ankle Gaiter is standard style slip on gaiter that the user puts on prior to putting on their shoe. It features a rip stop material on the front and a lycra stretch material on the back panel. There is a carbon infused shoe strap with a quick release buckle for easy placement. The Ankle Gaiter is available in two colors – black and grey.
My initial impressions are positive. I really like the Ankle Gaiter. It stayed in place very well on a few short runs and seems to breathe well. The Shin Gaiter is interesting; I received a standard large size and it fits snugly. I have large calves from long distance running so a wide fit might be better, but to this point they have fit well on a few training runs and don’t seem to prohibit circulation.
I will be using the gaiter combo on my runs and hikes over the next couple of months to see how they perform. I will look at usefulness – are they easy to use, do I find myself wanting to use them? Durability – how well do they stand up to running and hiking abuse here in Louisiana and other southern locales I use them in? Protection – do they keep gunk out of my shoes? Do they protect my shins from rocks, roots and so forth? Do they stop mosquitos and other bugs from biting my legs while running and hiking?
Thanks to Moxie Gear for providing the gear and to 4alloutdoors.org for allowing me to participate in this review.
How to choose Gaiters for Hiking & Outdoor Adventure
Rogaining Gaiters (padding)
If you’ve got a penchant for slimline design and body hugging padded goodness, then you might be interested in these. For those of us who spend time pushing through thick scrub, scrambling over log-jams in steeplechase style adventure racing or rogaining (often at night), we tend to find our shins take a beating. That’s where rogaining-style gaiters can come in handy. The key difference is the added padding layer to the front of the gaiter and streamlined design. The downside to these, is that with traditional hiking gaiters, the ‘air layer’ between the gaiter and your trouser leg and skin, is another tricky thing for any snakes to get through. See Aussie company Moxie Gear.
Where have you been all my scratched up, pebbled-shoe, hobbled-foot life oh Moxie Gaitors?
Rarely do you come across a product that you just love. As in, not just think ‘hey they’re cool but so are the twenty-two other products just like them on the market’. But love as in ‘I haven’t come across anything at all as good as these’. And how’s the timing of my discovery?
In edition #3 of Trail Run Mag (in which this review first appeared) you’ll note an article by Andy Hewat on running with snakes nipping at your hells/ankles/shins in the summer heat. Well, whack these puppies on and you’ll feel a whole lot more confident cruising through the bush.
The Moxie Gators provide enough coverage to ward off ‘envenomation’ – that’s a fancy word for when the fang gets in deep enough to inject the nasty stuff. This is not scientifically proven by Moxie, of course – it’s a subjective, judgment on my behalf. I did not put my leg in front of an angry snake. But I did feel a lot safer running in the Moxies these past months as the sun warmed and the likelihood of a serpent on trail increased.
Clad in these, I didn’t hold back, and my nerves and eyes weren’t darting for a sign of a coiled strike. No, I flew along the trail feeling like a fleet footed version of Ned Kelly. With just shin guards. Of course, the Moxies aren’t usually about snake protection. That was just relevant at the time of writing. They are brilliant for guarding against Australia’s sharp, low slung bracken and bush, while being so comfy you forget they are on you – nothing at all like standard bushwalking gators.
I’m not the only one to fall in love. The guys at iAdventure love them too, after testing them over ten gruelling days at 2011’s Adventure Racing World Champs in the thicket of the Tassie wilderness:
“All I can say is ‘Wow!’” writes team captain Matt Koerber “You’re onto a winner with this piece of kit. In terms of performance the gaiters didn’t feel like a burden to wear, and in fact you pretty much forget that you’re wearing them after a while, save for the fact that your legs aren’t getting ripped to shreds. The ankle gaiters were a revelation too, really good fit and kept absolutely everything out of the shoes.”
Yeah, what he said…
(On February 8, 2012)
Moxie Gear Gaiters fell into my hands last weekend before the Tough Bloke Challenge after a little competition by Deanna Bleag to see who really needed them. A quick upload of a photo of my shins from Spartan Race the week before was enough to convince her that I would probably be a good testing candidate.
Climbing – I can’t tell you because I didn’t know they were there! (That’s a great thing)
Performance wet – No noticeable increase in weight once wet. You beauty.
Crawling and intended use as shin protection – Big tick here. There were enough obstacles that I charged at that involved impact to my shins that I feel I gave these a solid testing. I’m happy to say that the damage from Spartan Race the week didn’t increase one iota. Smiles all round here.
Overall, I will pay them the highest compliment I can. They’re now part of my race equipment essentials! So that means the Moxie Gators are rated gold standard Pure Will equipment. Thank you Darren Clarke and the Moxie Gear crew, I’m one happy racer.