Well known for its motorsports protection, these Alpinestars Paragon Pro knee pads don't quite measure up to their exemplary name.
Alpinestars offers two versions of the Paragon Knee Guard – the Plus for £50 and the Pro at £75 we’ve featured in this test.
The Pro is a lightweight, sleeve design and uses a lightweight stretch mesh construction to keep the weight low and the breathability high. It has a ventilation window (another name for a big hole) on the back of the protector and has a semi-articulated cut, so moves with you even when mashing on the pedals. There is some thin silicone gripper on the upper hem and the Pro is also pretty long up top, so can easily be pulled under an inner short… and it will stay there too. There’s no stretch or gripper on the lower hem but we had no issues with the Pro riding up. However, it isn’t the most stable knee pad – the pre-shaped protector fits nicely around the knee but the flimsy mesh just doesn’t really hold it in place. It’s marginally more secure than the Dainese Trail Skins Air tested elsewhere but only just.
To allow air to circulate, the polyurethane insert is perforated and even during some pretty warm spring rides this knee pad never got hot under the collar. The whole front of the guard is protected with a hard-wearing, abrasion-resistant fabric and that seems to be the only upgrade over the cheaper Plus model. We don’t think this is worth the £25 upcharge because similarly priced knee pads in this test come with a D3O insert and are more robust.
If you’re in the market for a really lightweight, highly breathable and super plush knee guard the Pro ticks those boxes but the Plus is way better value. It has the same insert, overall protection level and also comes in a vast range of sizes.