iXS' Flow Evo+ knee guards aren't an entirely new addition to the Swiss company's lineup, but they did receive an update for 2018 to improve their moisture wicking and breathability. The Flow knee guards are intended for all-round usage, and have a simple sleeve-style design, with one velcro strap on the lower rear portion to help keep them securely in place. Impact protection is provided by a removable viscoelastic pad (iXS call it X-Matter) that's designed to harden upon impact and reduce the severity of a blow.
iXS Flow Evo+ Details
• X-Matter viscoelastic pad (removable)
• Anti-bacterial AeroMesh fabric
• Sizes: S, M, L, XL
• EN1621-1:1997 certified
• MSRP: $79.90 USD
There's a mesh back panel to help with ventilation on warm days, and a silicone gripper along the upper cuff to add further protection against slippage. Available in sizes S-XL, the Flow Evo+ knee guards retail for $79.90 USD. Performance
This time of the year I wear knee pads on almost every single ride – it's cold and slippery out, which means my chances of hitting the ground are even higher than usual, and pads serve double duty by helping keep my knees warm. For the most part, the fit of the Flow knee guards was excellent. They're very low profile, especially considering the fact that they provide actual impact protection rather than just using a few layers of foam to create a false sense of security. I was able to wear them under slim-fitting pants without any trouble – they could be a good option for the skinny-jean wearing dirt jump crowd. I haven't been able to try them in really scorching temperatures, but I did take them on a few rides in California when temperatures were in the 70s and they didn't feel overly hot.
I only have one minor complaint about the fit of the Flow knee guards – I wish the height of the upper cuff was another inch or two taller. That request is partially due to vanity – the relatively low height meant that I was sometimes showing off the dreaded gorby gap, that line of skin between the top of the knee pad and the hem of my shorts. A little extra length would help with that, and it would add even more security against slippage.
I've thankfully avoided any major wrecks while wearing these pads, but they have helped take the bite out of a couple knee vs. stem impacts, along with a sudden slide out that had me dragging my knee on the ground when I lost traction in a muddy corner. If you're regularly hitting Red Bull Rampage-sized hucks I'd recommend something with a little more padding, but for general usage the Flow knee guards are a good choice. They've also held up well despite all the muddy miles that they've seen, and the removable padding makes washing them a simple task.Pinkbike's Take