Originally Posted by VxZeroKnots
It makes sense to me, when you are going 11/10ths the crash is going to be a lot different than if you are going 3/10ths or 7/10ths or whatever.
I'll wear whatever around town because I'm riding at well below the halfway mark and at speeds where I don't necessarily want to experience abrupt deceleration but have gone down enough on bicycles at the same speeds that doing the same in jeans or even baggy shorts and cowboy or hiking boots respectively isn't that big of a deal to me. Road rash and bruises at 45 and below don't bother me, that has been happening since I got my first bike with training wheels. As to impact I don't personally feel that pads or gear outside of a helmet and braces protect you from serious injury, only discomfort.
When I'm venturing above 45mph or know I'm going to be pushing it I'll gear up to the level I feel is appropriate so as to keep any epidural injuries to an acceptable level, all the fancy power ranger suits in the world aren't going to save you from a spiral fracture or a torn ligament or serious internal bleeding.
Those are the things I'm most concerned about and have been down enough to know that sometimes you walk away from the most hainus get offs unscathed and other become seriously injured goofing off. That being said I don't want my skin being ground to the bone or otherwise removed in large quantities so I'll do what I can to prevent it whether it is maintaining a reasonable pace or putting on gear.
In either case the only difference wearing some nylon or leather is going to make when it comes to life(style) changing injuries is how hard they have to work at the ER to cut it off. YMMV and to each their own, and I won't push my views on anyone, these are merely my thoughts on the matter.
This one sums up how I make gear choices.
I don't worry so much about road rash, its survivable.
I worry more about blunt force trauma and spinal cord injuries, of which gloves, boots, and textile/leather with armor don't do much to mitigate.