Review by Reg Kittrelle
[This Qwi Nerve Protection Motorcycle Gloves Review was originally published in American Rider magazine]
If you’ve experienced a tingling sensation or numbness in your hands while riding, the odds are you have pinched either the median or ulnar nerve, both of which run through your wrists and into your hands. Briefly, the median nerve gives sensation to the thumb, index finger, middle finger, and half of the ring finger. The ulnar nerve handles feeling to the little finger, the other half of the ring finger, and small muscles in the palm and thumb. Generally, damage to these nerves results from their constriction in the wrist due to, for example, repetitive motion, vibration, and injury Contributing to this is pressure on the palm as with motorcycle riding. Damage to these nerves can lead to impaired hand use, possibly leading to you being unable to ride, necessitating surgery.
The Qwi Nerve Protection Sport Motorcycle Gloves address this problem by the strategic placement of gel pads in the palm and thumb areas. According to Qwi, the difference with their gloves is that the pads are placed adjacent to the nerves, rather than on top of them, as with many other padded gloves. Thus, the nerves are relieved of undue pressure.
I wore the Qwi gloves (Part No. FMSP-002) off and on during a recent 1,300-mile trip. Manufactured from supple, high-quality cow leather (water resistant and washable), they are conservatively styled, and feature a welcomed long cuff that fit nicely over my bulky jacket. Both the cuff and the wrist areas use hook-and-loop straps to cinch things up. Additionally, the fingers are pre-curved to aid fit, several reflective strips border the pads atop the gloves, and a handy rubber visor wiper blade is affixed to the left index finger.
Most important, they worked as designed. With conventional gloves, on long rides my left hand experiences the typical tingling and numbness associated with nerve irritation. Additionally, I get a hot spot on the inside of my left thumb. The Qwi gloves eliminated both of these problems. By the way, I believe my right hand has been immune to this condition because in using the throttle it moves more.
I can’t, however, unequivocally recommend these gloves, for two reasons. First, the gloves are built using internal seams with excessive leather margins, all of which contacted my fingers. This continual rubbing of my fingers against the seam margin was highly irritating, causing me to prefer the tingling nerves of my other gloves to wearing the Qwi gloves. The second reason is just plain silly: The left thumb was about 3/4-inch longer than the right one! Normally, problems like this would cause me to not feature a product on this page. However, the Qwi gloves are on the right track towards solving a serious problem for riders, and I would like to see them succeed. They just need to clear up a couple of build glitches.