Off-road motorcycling is a format of motorcycling racing competed through off-road environments. It includes any competition that is not raced on tarmac circuits or roads. The most popular events are motocross (MX), supercross (SX), enduro, speedway, trials and cross-country. In recent years, variants such as beachcross have developed a large following. Apart from the racing surface, the big difference from track racing is the style of the bikes.
Motocross was first recognized as a British off-road event called Scrambles, which was itself an evolution of Trials events popular in northern Britain. During the 1930s, motocross grew in popularity, especially in Britain. In 1952, the FIM created an Individual European 500cc Championship and a 250cc World Championship was established in 1962. It was in the smaller 250cc division that the sport came into its own. It has evolved with sub-disciplines such as stadium events known as Supercross and Arenacross. Freestyle (FMX) events, where riders are judged on their aerial acrobatic skills, have gained popularity, as has Supermoto (a motocross style racing on both tarmac and off-road).
These bikes are specially designed to run on surfaces that are not conventionally paved (created from sand, mud, snow, etc.). These motorcycles are simpler and lighter than road racing bikes and have knobby tires.
Off Road Motorcycling - Helmet
Full-face helmets are worn for shielding the face. It absorbs impacts and sometimes includes vents to increase the airflow to the rider. These helmets are equipped with a chin strap & often include a visor for face protection.
Off Road Motorcycling - Boots
Shin-length boots are worn over the racing suit that is made of a material which is abrasion, cut, tear and burn resistant. Tough yet moderately flexible boots with carbon-fiber soles provide the rider with a good grip and additional safety from risks.
Off Road Motorcycling - Gloves
Motorcyclists wear gloves made of leather or Kevlar and sometimes have carbon-fiber knuckle protection. Also, there can be a sticky-grip material on the palms.
Off Road Motorcycling - Racing Suit
The motorcyclists wear one-piece suits made of leather or especially human-made fabrics like kelver or cordura. The suits are equipped with titanium shoulder pads, chest and rib protectors, elbow and knee guards to provide added protection.