No, I'm not taking the lieutenant's test, but I am attending a Lights/Sights/Laser class in a couple of weeks.  Since my knees are still throbbing from the Police Memorial 5K, I think I'm going to follow their recommendation to bring knee (and maybe elbow) pads.  Any recommendations? Thanks and be safe.

Original Post

The Arcteryx knee pads are the best I've tried - good protection, moderately comfortable, and not too hot.  I use them for both tactical applications and for skiing.  I think I've even used them for some landscaping/gardening work.

The Black Diamond Telekneesis (sp?) are a similar design, a couple bucks cheaper, and seem to be more available than the dirty bird.  Backcountry dot com is a good vendor.

I have some of the older style knee pads, and I gave up on them.  They were too hot and fell down too often.

Arcteryx again. Best standalone kneepad goin. 

-We are the sheepdogs, bad people looking out for the good people by killing worse people
-Don't get PTSD, Give PTSD. Make the taliban wake up screaming in the night because he fears Canadians are coming to Kill him.

-Location - Canada - Joined - 2006MAR19

I do not have Arcteryx pads so cannot comment on them but I have tried half a dozen types of skateboard pads and given up on all of them.  Instead I went another way; either Crye trousers with the built in pads or divers' neoprene soft pads.

The scuba pads are designed to stop cave divers scuffing their wetsuit but I found that they could be worn under trousers, next to the skin.  They were low profile, not too hot, never moved and offered the protection I needed.  The disadvantage is they have no hard shell so they are padding rather than protection.  I have never found this to be an issue  even as an infantryman who spends a lot of his life kneeling and prone.  In particular I liked that because they were under the trousers, they did not catch on things and get tugged down when crawling on rough ground.  This may not be relevant to you.

They brand I like best is Beaver (snigger):

Which I buy online from diving shops.  Not sure if they sell them state-side but I'm sure you could find something similar.



"Don't forget your stick Lieutenant."


"Rather, Sir. Wouldn't want to face a Jerry machine gun without this."

In addition:

I strongly dislike elbow pads for shooting as I think they make you too unstable in the prone and are too restrictive on arm movement.  I usually just accept the discomfort.

That said I was recently training for a competition that included a stage with 10 exposures at 200 - 300m, spread over nearly 8 minutes, from the prone, on tarmac.  After rehearsing it a few times and with my kneepads in mind, I bought some velcro and neoprene elbow wraps for sports/weights and put them on loosely.  Something like this:

I am a convert. They offer enough protection to make me comfortable and restrict my movement little enough to be tolerable.  I still would not wear a full elbow pad though.



"Don't forget your stick Lieutenant."


"Rather, Sir. Wouldn't want to face a Jerry machine gun without this."

JNC, if you want to try before you buy, stop by the schoolhouse. You're welcome to use mine.

"It is about basics. The basics of Gunfuckingfighting." Pat Rogers

We, the willing, lead by the unknowing, are doing the impossible for the ungrateful. We have done so much for so long, with so little, We are now qualified to do anything, with nothing.

Joined: April 6, 2007
Location: Maryland

I used my Arc caps working on my truck and the straps bunched up and the backs of my knees were all pinched up.  Anyone else have this issue? 

I tried the other day X-ing the straps and I think that might work better.

Also I am going to try using a heavy clip to clip them to my pant legs, instead of the straps.

I've been wearing the Arc'Teryx knee pads since the beginning and love them. You can wear them under or over pants easily. They are so low profile people will not notice they are under your trouser legs. They do not hold moisture, so no soggy smelly knee pads! The design on the lower strap is not to grab your leg, but to sit on top of your calf muscle so only the top strap actually grabs you. They are crazy comfy. If you crawl in the prone for a living there might be better choices, but for most tactical work they rule.

God Bless


Matthew 10:16

"Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves."


I'm a little late to the party.

The above mentioned CRYE with removable pads are awesome.  I got two pair to T&E in 2010.  If they were mulitcam instead of UCP, I'd still be rocking them. 

The PX special ALTAs aren't bad either for a low cost reasonable quality set.  Mine last a tour in Iraq and ASTAN.  They might have saved my knee from a needle in Iraq.  (Protip, always look before you kneel). 

Most of the other pads the Army issued me are crap. 

Also, remember to put your name on your pads.  I had a SGT accidentally borrow mine for half a field problem.   


I'm either dead right, or horribly wrong. Either way the results should be entertaining.


"Shoot the MOTHERF$%^ER until he changes shape or catches fire"  the PAT ROGERS

Army Issue pads are horrible

Old school Alta style are still GTG in a pinch.

Arc are better


  • One Man's Fatwa is another Man's FRAGO. 
  • Two to the Heart, One to the Mind.
  • In Spiritu Et Veritate, Ad Logica Animo, Ad Hominem, Ad Captandum Vulgus.
  • BEHOLD, the LORD my GOD, who prepares my Hands for Battle and my Fingers for War! PSALMS 144:1

Arcteryx pads have been very reliable and comfortable for me. Tried Black Diamond, and while they are comfortable, the buckle system doesn't stay closed. It sucks trying to run when the top strap comes apart and the knee pad is just flopping around. I liked Team Wendy pads too. Their elbow pads are fairly low profile.

If you don't have less on, you have... Moron?

Still stand by my endorsement 2 years and 3 months ago.  I had purchased a second set of Arcteryx Knee Caps thinking with our stalks and my general use and abuse protecting my tired knees that mine would eventually fail and require replacement. 

My secondary set are still in their packaging in my store closet and the originals are still going strong with now indication of pending failure. 

"Pain, we endure...faulty weaponry, we do not."

Pro-tip: You can put As'teryx kneepads into Crye pants if you need extra comfort (taking frequent knee with heavy-ass ruck,...).

by the way, my first set of arcteryx kneepads (civilian yellow and kydex), while reinforced with duct tape, are still running strong and soft inside my combat pants when not using Crye inserts. Have new crocodile ones for different uniforms/ civilian clothes trainig though

 "Anatomy and Physiology is EVERYTHING. It is the difference between being a trained monkey and a medic"


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