ATV Riding Outfit Ideas and Tips: Dress for Thrills

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Triston Brewer

What To Wear ATV Riding featured image by the supermelon

When it comes to the exhilarating world of ATV (All-Terrain Vehicle) riding, the right gear can make all the difference between a thrilling adventure and a potentially hazardous experience.

No matter your expertise level – from a seasoned off-road enthusiast or a novice eager to explore the great outdoors – choosing the appropriate attire for ATV riding is paramount.

Safety, comfort, and protection are (or should be) key considerations, as you’ll be navigating through rugged terrains, encountering varying weather conditions, and facing potential hazards along the way.

In this style guide, we will delve into the essential clothing and gear you should wear when ATV riding, ensuring that you’re well-prepared for the exciting off-road journeys that lie ahead.

From helmets to riding boots, from protective gear to climate-appropriate clothing, we will explore the essential components of an ATV rider’s wardrobe, helping you stay safe and stylish while navigating the terrain.

So, get ready to gear up and get ready to hit the dirt roads and trails with confidence, knowing that your attire is up to the challenge of the ATV riding adventure!


When ATV riding, prioritize safety and comfort.

Wear a DOT-approved helmet, goggles, gloves, a long-sleeved shirt or jacket, durable pants, and over-the-ankle boots with good traction.

Don’t forget sunscreen and bug spray; consider additional gear like chest protectors and knee pads for added safety.

Assembling the Essential Gear

The following are the essential ATV safety gear items that should be part of your outfit when riding an off-road vehicle:

Gear ItemPurpose and Notes
HelmetProtects your head in case of falls or accidents.
Goggles or Face ShieldShields your eyes from dust, debris, and wind.
Riding JacketProvides protection from weather and potential falls.
Riding PantsDesigned for durability and comfort during rides.
GlovesOffer a better grip on the handlebars and protect your hands.
Riding BootsProtect your feet and provide grip on the ATV’s foot pegs.
Table: Essential ATV Riding Gear

Full Face Helmet

The significance of wearing a helmet during your ATV riding adventure cannot be overstated. A helmet stands as the utmost critical component of your ATV safety gear, ensuring complete protection for your head and face from potential dangers.

Without a doubt, a DOT-approved helmet holds the top spot in terms of importance. While we’ve encountered various arguments against helmet usage, we remain steadfast in advocating for it.

This helmet is the singular most crucial item of apparel, distinguishing between a memorable, enjoyable outing and becoming a dangerous disaster.

Investing in the finest helmet your budget allows is advisable, as it unquestionably represents the primary attire requirement for ATV riding on every occasion.


Avoiding the discomfort of squinting due to sun, dust, or wind obstructing your vision is not only a matter of style but, more importantly, a critical safety concern.

Experience has underscored the indispensable nature of goggles as an essential safety and comfort accessory for everyone venturing out on a side-by-side or ATV ride.

Plus, goggles also look super-cool when you’re driving across the terrain! Since both ATVs and UTVs lack windshields, we strongly advocate for the use of protective eye gear such as goggles or sunglasses to shield your eyes from the potential hazards of sand and dust.


Moving on to your hands, the next aspect to ponder is the importance of off-road gloves. These gloves serve a dual purpose, providing you with a secure and dependable grip on the steering wheel while also acting as a shield against any foreign objects that might find their way into the vehicle’s cab.

When you embark on an ATV adventure, donning these gloves will keep your hands cozy and at ease during chillier days and safeguard them from the discomfort of soreness, calluses, and blisters that can arise from prolonged handlebar gripping.

While it might initially seem like a luxury, wearing gloves during your off-road escapades is far from frivolous; it should be considered a necessity.

Gloves play a pivotal role in safeguarding your hands against the perils of gravel, rocks, sticks, and any other unexpected encounters that may arise during your ride.

Clothing for ATV Riding

Clothing ItemPurpose and Notes
Long-Sleeve ShirtShields your arms from sun, wind, and potential scrapes.
Riding PantsChoose pants designed for off-road use and comfort.
SocksWear moisture-wicking socks to keep your feet dry.
Balaclava or BuffProtects your face and neck from dust and debris.
Lightweight JacketDepending on the weather, consider a light, breathable jacket.
Table 2: Clothing for ATV Riding

Long-Sleeved Shirts

Opt for a long-sleeved upper garment and robust trousers as your attire of choice, serving as a defensive shield against potential abrasions, scrapes, cuts, and the harsh sun.

It’s crucial to pay attention to the fit of your clothing, ensuring that it doesn’t veer towards excessive bagginess or looseness, as this could lead to unwelcome snags and entanglements.

While a long-sleeved shirt might not seem ideal during a sunny ATV excursion, it provides an effective safeguard against the insidious onset of sunburn, which you might not immediately sense but could later prove to be a discomforting surprise.

Long Pants

It may be enticing to not do so, but even in the warmer seasons, it’s advisable to steer clear of wearing shorts during your ATV riding expedition.

Opting for a sturdier fabric that fully covers your legs, such as jeans, serves the dual purpose of shielding your legs and preventing minor scrapes and cuts.

Closed Toed Shoes

When considering your UTV riding attire, don’t overlook the importance of appropriate footwear. Closed-toed shoes are an absolute necessity, and over-the-ankle boots come highly recommended for the added support and protection they provide.

Few things are as uncomfortable as starting the day by pulling a muddy winch line and enduring wet feet for the remainder of your adventure.

The decision to wear sandals while riding an ATV can lead to multiple concerns, including exposure to excessive heat generated by the engine and susceptibility to rocks and sticks that might pose a threat during your journey.

In contrast, closed-toe shoes like sneakers or, even better, boots offer complete protection for your feet, guarding against potential injuries that could occur.


The Fine Details Should Not Be Overlooked

It’s better to be safe than sorry, so you should also include extra waterproof gear and a change of socks, pants, and a shirt in your ATV riding kit.

Employing a layering strategy with a base, mid, and outer shell proves to be a reliable approach, ensuring you stay warm, dry, and content even during extended adventures that span multiple days.

And when it comes to gearing up for ATV mudding, don’t hesitate to slip into some waders for optimal protection.

Just like any other outdoor escapade, it’s imperative to stay updated on the weather conditions. The wind chill factor while riding at high speeds can make the actual temperature feel considerably colder.

In colder climates, the ride can turn quite frigid once you’re underway. While you’ve meticulously planned every other aspect of your adventure, don’t overlook the importance of planning your outfit from head to toe.

Protect Your Skin

Sunscreen may not be considered clothing, but it’s an indispensable item that should always accompany you during any outdoor activity.

Regardless of the season or weather conditions, the need for sun protection remains constant.

Therefore, it’s imperative to include sunscreen with an SPF rating of at least 30 in your essentials. Additionally, don’t forget the importance of regular reapplication to ensure continuous protection against harmful UV rays.

Dos and Don’ts for ATV Riding Attire

Do wear appropriate safety gear.Don’t ride without a helmet; it’s essential.
Do dress in layers for variable weather.Don’t wear loose or baggy clothing that could catch on the ATV.
Do protect your extremities with gloves, boots, and knee/elbow pads.Don’t ride without eye protection; goggles or a face shield are crucial.
Do check the weather forecast before dressing.Don’t forget to secure loose items like scarves that could become entangled.

Final Thoughts

Now that you’re well-versed in what to wear when riding your ATV or SSV, it’s time to hit the trails and embrace the thrill of the ride!

Engaging in ATV riding is a fantastic way to inject excitement into your life. While it might seem a bit daunting initially, it has the potential to evolve into a beloved family pastime.

We trust that the tips provided above will help you feel at ease and thoroughly prepared for your inaugural ATV adventure. So, gear up, stay safe, and get ready to create unforgettable memories on the trails!

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