Best MTB Grips [Review] in 2021
written by Cycle expert Alex Bristol
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Mountain bike grips affect the feel and control of the bike when tackling the treacherous trails; they’re one of the 3 main contact points with the bike; you want to make sure you’ve got a good pair of mountain bike grips. But are you struggling with what to look for?
Good news, my friend, you’re at the right place!
I have spent 10 hours trekking through the wide web to find the best mountain bikes that will not only provide you with the ultimate grip and control down the trails but also allow you to shred the trails for hours without getting hand fatigue.
With so many MTB grips on the market, it can be difficult to determine the difference between poor quality grips (that cause painful hands) and good quality grips (that will provide you with hours of happy riding). It can be a challenge in itself to find the right MTB grips for you.
But it’s not all doom and gloom; I’m here to help.
To make things easier for you, I have seeped through 57 different MTB grips and filtered through the good ones rather than the bad ones. Nothing will stop you from hitting a full day down the trails now.
Here’s a pro tip: when looking through a handful of mountain bike grips, remember what may work for one rider may not work for you; our hands are all different after all. So when purchasing MTB grips, I would recommend trying out a few different ones to find the right fit.
Let’s jump into my guide of the best MTB grips for all my adrenaline junkies.
We’ve spent the time so you don’t have to:
Best MTB Grips
ODI Ruffian Lock-On MTB Grips
best mountain bike grips for numb hands
Coming to steal the show in number one spot is the renowned ODI Ruffian; these grips are undoubtedly one of the most popular grips on the market and the leading choice for pro riders all over the world.
The Ruffian Lock-On grip utilizes an ultra-narrow knurled surface and lock-on grip system technology for ultimate control and confidence down the trails. The slim profile is favored amongst many cyclists as it will fit a wide range of hands comfortably.
You can buy with confidence that you’re getting the top product on the market as ODI is the world leader in grip technology; they use proprietary compounds that have been extensively researched and tested by pro athletes worldwide.
The longevity and comfort you get from these bad boys are unmatched.
The design of the rubber has light knurling and waffling on the underside for added traction for a more comfortable grip. As a trail shredder, I found that these grips are durable and high quality– they allow me the shred tight corners with complete confidence and control.
To top it all off, the Ruffian grips are hard-wearing and won’t leave your hands tingling after a long ride; they massively helped combat hand fatigue. They’re easy to install and provide confidence and comfort while hitting the mountainous terrain.
- Light, slim design
- Soft and comfortable on hands
- Lock-on clamps for slide resistance
- World leader in grip technology
- Quite slim design, won’t suit all
Latest deal: ODI Ruffian Lock-On MTB Grips
Ergon GE1 Evo Grips
best mountain bike lock on grips
Here to take the fame at number two are the Ergon GE1 Evo Grips; they are high-quality and reliable bar grips that can tackle anything a fun-packed day down the mountains will throw at you.
These grips were designed with aggressive trail riders in mind.
Just like the ODI Ruffian, Ergon GE1 is designed for Enduro and gravity riders with a boasting gravity control rubber compound, slip-proof surface, and textured zones to prevent your hands from rotating on the bar– for the ultimate firm, comfortable hold and position.
But that’s not all though, my friends:
The ergonomic design takes the stress off your hand muscles and nerves used to grip and reduce arm pumps. The several compounds of the cut-out skeleton give this grip a unique shape and a wide surface area for your hand.
When tackling unpredictable terrain, our hands are put through a fair amount of abuse from all the shocks and vibrations; luckily, the GE1 offers superb shock absorption and damping. Nothing will stop you from answering the mountain calls!
Want to spice up your mountain bike? The GEI Evo grips come in a wide range of colors to choose from, so you can match the rest of your frame (plus complement your personality).
These grips will suit all your palm needs.
- Ergonomic shape
- Gravity control rubber compound
- Textured zones
- Shock absorbant
- Needs breaking in
Latest deal: Ergon GE1 Evo Grips
ESI Chunky Grips
best foam mountain bike grips
Want a silicone grip that offers excellent grip in both wet or dry conditions? Wet or dry hands won’t slip or feel sticky with the ESI Chunky Grips.
ESI was the first brand to create silicone foam grips, and they have taken the world by storm. Their lightweight design offers an insane level of vibration dampening, shock absorption, durability, and comfort that your palms will love you for.
These grips are fairly easy to install on your bike; all you need to do to install and remove these grips is using rubbing alcohol; it’s that simple!
But here’s the best bit:
These USA-made grips are made with memory silicone which will mold to your hand for ultimate individual comfort. The 32mm of padding offers the right balance of shock absorption and comfort while shredding the trails.
You can say goodbye to hand fatigue with these badass grips!
- Memory silicone foam grips
- Can be used in wet and dry conditions
- Shock absorbing
- Comfortable even after hours
- Installation can be quite tedious
Latest deal: ESI Chunky Grips
I’m super excited to tell you about this product; Half Nelson’s MTB grips are lightweight, comfortable, and offer everything you’d want out of MTB grips.
One thing I love about these MTB grips is that they’re designed to give you a super tacky and thin feel straight out of the box. These MTB grips are raved about down the trails.
The knobby grips provide superior grip like no other; the grip is a great balance of softness without allowing your hand to twist or causing hand fatigue. They’re pretty old school but definitely a classic for long rides.
These MTB grips are ideal for the trails as they’re nice and tacky– they’ll give you the confidence boost you need to weave in and out of the tight twisty trails! They’re pretty small grips so they’re ideal for little hands.
These grips are a real confidence booster.
- Blend color combinations
- Durable and strong
- Lock-on system
- Aluminium star rings
- Could use metallic side caps
Latest deal: Race Face Half Nelson Lock On Grips
SRAM Racing Grips
SRAM is a renowned brand in the cycling industry; they are known to make some of the best bike accessories you can find. They bring you a great creation yet again in the light of MTB grips.
These grips are super high quality and don’t take a toll on your pocket; they come in an all-black color that looks minimal and gives a cool, understated vibe. It will be a hit among the minimalists with the clean design.
These grips offer a tacky feel with just the right amount of flex; they feel great in hand and keep the comfort high.
This allows you to ride for extended periods of time and enables you to maintain the grip through some of the sharpest corners and changing directions.
Here’s a pro tip: When installing these bar grips, use lots of hairspray inside the grips and on the bar ends, quickly sliding and twisting the grips into place. The hairspray acts as a lubricant; then, it turns into a strong adhesive when it dries.
If you’re on a budget looking for high-quality grips, I cannot recommend these grips more!
- Contour plush foam
- Comfortable and lightweight
- Lock-on system
- Easy installation
- Not the best foam
Latest deal: SRAM Racing Grips
ODI Elite Pro Lock-On Handlebar Grips
If you are looking for a more premium design that offers great control and handling when it comes to mountain bike grips, you have come to the right place. The ODI elite pro handlebar grips offer a great design that looks sleek and clean.
You will love the simplicity of the product; the rubber used is strong and lightweight for durability. The raised ergonomic ribbed pad conforms to the shape of your hand, thereby enabling superior shock absorption without making the grip feel large.
The waffle pattern only helps the handling further. The grip has a lock-on system that allows you to have features like anti-slip on board. Plus, the reinforced end molded out of soft and durable material prevents grip blowout and improves its life.
Here’s the kicker:
ODI used the V2.1 Lock-ON System used in their Motocross line for a secure single clamp grip that allows for ultimate comfort when riding outside the grip. Plus, this new clamping system features larger 3mm bolt heads for simplified installation and extra security.
These Elite grips are designed for riders looking for comfort from their grips without having to sacrifice durability. Whether you’re looking for comfort on longer rides or shock absorption and a better feel on descents, then choosing ODI Elite pro is your best option!
- Lightweight and durable
- Ergonomic ribbed pad
- Lock-on system
- Enhanced handling
Latest deal: ODI Elite Pro Lock-On Handlebar Grips
Lizard Skins Charger Single Compound MTB Grips
Next up on my list is Lizard Skins Charger, it is a real gem for the price point. It provides a unique grip thanks to the unique handlebar grip pattern, the lined grips and slant design looks sleek and perform just as well.
What I love about Lizard Skins Mountain Bike Grips is that they’re amazingly comfortable and forgiving yet long-lasting. The raised pattern also allows for a strong grip that enables quick and efficient handling through the roughest of terrains.
But wait I’m not finished:
The lock-on system is also available to help with slipping, even in extreme conditions. The single compound grip comes with push-in plugs to give a firm and reliable hold to your bars.
For the price point you can’t beat it.
- Moab round circle design
- Lightweight and strong
- Lock-on system
- Color options
Latest deal: Lizard Skins Charger
Horizon Race Grip
Horizon takes a different approach to customizing your grips by allowing you to switch your end caps for different colors. This is a unique and sleek way to incorporate change.
The grips have an angular leaf life grip design that provides a great grip while handling the bike in the trickiest tracks and terrains. Whether you prefer to ride with or without gloves, you can enjoy a comfortable grip no matter how intense your ride is.
The material used is softer and grippier A15 Kraton compound that enhances the durability and longevity of the grips. The multidirectional tapered grip allows a cushioning effect in key areas and grip in all directions, no matter the weather.
The lock-on grips system is also on board for an anti-slip feature that prevents the grips from slipping away in extreme situations with lockrings on end.
You can throw yourself into the berms and land the biggest jumps, shred the tightest corner while maintaining a complete connection with the bar. These grips will take you wherever the mountain takes you with confidence.
- A15 kraton compound
- Leaf like grip
- Lightweight and great handling
- Lock-on system
- Could use better quality lock-on rings
Latest deal: Horizon Race Grip
Nukeproof Neutron Half Waffle Lock-On Grip
Nukeproof brings you a sleek modern looking grip for your mountain bike. The grip has a minimal half-waffle design that does wonders in both the handling and looks department– if you’re a minimalist, this is definitely the grips for you.
The grip material is A25 Kraton that is great for durability and strength; it is also lightweight, which allows you to keep the overall weight of the bike low. A Lock-on system is also available, so there is no slippage while riding in extreme conditions.
The grips are ready to take on extreme terrains with bumpy tracks; they will hold up just fine and will see you through a good amount of time. My only pet peeve is that without gloves, they are not as comfortable.
I absolutely love the color range of these grips– there’s a grip for any personality.
It also comes in various colors like black, yellow, white, red, blue, purple, green, and grey– so, no problems with customization. They’re super tack and sticky so that you can shred the trails with complete confidence.
For under 20 bucks, Nukeproof is a winner!
- A25 kraton material
- Great grip and handling
- Lock-on system
- Multiple color options
- Could use better side caps
Latest deal: Nukeproof Neutron Half Waffle Lock-On Grip
MARQUE Grapple Mountain Bike Handlebar Grips
Now I know I’ve made you wait this long for these grips, but trust me they are worth the wait!
Marque brings you some of the funkiest and colorful designs when it comes to mountain bike grips. You can select from a variety of different color options and truly make your bike your own.
The unique multidirectional grip allows for great handling and you feel confident riding through some of the roughest terrains. The tacky TPR rubber is durable and absorbs shocks just fine, enabling a comfortable riding experience.
These grips will make you look badass down the trails.
The grip will fit most handlebars and the lock-on system is made with aluminum alloy that adds more to the longevity of the grip. Lock-on also means it will not slip during extreme conditions.
The slim profile and unique design will be sure to spice up your mountain bike.
- Multiple color options
- Lightweight and durable
- Lock-on feature
- Good grippy design
- Could be a little more thick
Latest deal: MARQUE Grapple Mountain Bike Handlebar Grips
Best Mountain Bike Grips Buyers Guide
Mountain bike grips are the main 3 points of contact on the bike, they make the world of difference for control, comfort, and relieving hand fatigue. A good pair of grips can make the world of difference between tingly hands after a couple of hours of riding and a fun-packed day down the trails.
Not all mountain bike grips will suit everyone, what may work for Susan may not work for Jim, different hand sizes may suit different grips. With many to choose from it can be quite easy to get lost during the hunt and not find what you’re looking for.
Follow my top tips to find the best mountain bike grips and you’ll be shredding the trails like an absolute boss in no time.
What to look for when buying an MTB grip:
To ensure that you get the best value for your money when choosing the best mountain bike grips, below are some of the things we checked.
Grip size: Mountain bike grips are available in different sizes. You also need to determine whether you would prefer thick or thin grips. Thick grips are the best in terms of comfort and if you will be using the bike for long hours they are the best.
However, they do not fit everyone which means that if you need to confirm that a they are comfortable for you before buying.
Material: The material used to make the grip determines if the grip will be comfortable or not. When we were comparing different grips, we only considered materials that are very comfortable even when cycling for long hours.\
Silicone grips are lightweight however they’re not as durable as harder compound materials. Silicone is more likely to get damaged in crashes but silicone grips tend to be tackier and give you more control.
Hard compounds are ideal for shock absorption and reducing vibrations to your hands, this makes it more efficient in relieving hand fatigue.
Lock-on grips have a hard plastic sleeve under the grip, however, some riders prefer the feeling of slide on grips with no material between the grip and handlebars. Not having a plastic sleeve allows riders to have more grip material for vibration damping.
This is also ideal for making the overall feel seem slimmer.
Length and shape: The length of your mountain bike handlebars also matters a lot. You should ensure that the grips you have picked suit the length of your handlebar. They should not be too long or too short.
If you have small hands then long grips won’t be right for you as they may push your brake or gear levers too far away from your reach, also it would be less comfortable.
Using grips that are too short will also event in your hands held over the end of the bars onto the outside lock ring, this will not only be uncomfortable but you will feel every shock and bump– causing hand fatigue.
Some grips come straight, whereas others have an ergonomic shape that molds your hand.
Price: This may seem obvious but you need to set a budget to ensure that you do not spend more than you can afford. One thing you will realize about the products I have reviewed is that even though they are available at different prices, they all come at a decent price.
This is something a lot of people don’t consider when it comes to mountain bike grips. But that is where many companies rip them off. It is important to pay attention to the price tag.
You don’t need to spend an arm and a leg to get the best mountain bike grips!
Easy to install: You need to know that not all mountain bike grips will be easy to install. Therefore, you should not forget to check that when buying.
I understand that this can be a bit difficult when purchasing these products online but you shouldn’t worry because all those mountain bike grips we have reviewed are very easy to install.
Build quality: Many grips in the market might have some very appealing price tags but they lack when it comes to quality. If the grip is not using good material for the grip itself, it will tear apart very easily.
The classic waffle profile is the most popular design for mountain biking as it can perform well in all weather conditions. Some brands use different profiles on various parts of the grip for optimum performance.
I would recommend going for a couple of trusted brands, some may suit you and others may not but at least you can guarantee build quality.
Lock-on system: This is a rather important feature to have. It is basically comprised of metal rings that hold the grip in place on the handlebars, so they do not move around during extreme riding conditions.
Lock-on grips are the ideal choice over slide on grips as they are unlikely to rotate unexpectedly but they do tend to be heavier, as a result of the extra material. Any grips will need regular cleaning (especially after a day down the muddy trails) as mud and dirt can get blocked within the bolts.
Why should you purchase mountain bike grips?
Mountain bike grips are important accessories you must-have if you want to make your rides more enjoyable. One of the major benefits of installing them is that they allow you to hold the handlebar easily without any discomfort. You are also likely to hurt your wrists and hands when you are not using them.
Another benefit of these grips is that they lessen vibrations, especially when riding on dangerous terrains. When riding on mountains and trails, you should always ensure that you have installed them because they also allow you to hold the handlebar tightly. They are also affordable and easy to use.
Are all-mountain bike grips the same?
What you need to know when buying mountain grips is that they come with different sizes. Even though their internal diameter has been standardized the outer diameter is different to suit different riders.
Are mountain bike grips worth it?
Mountain bike grips are very important because they enhance the stability of the bike. They also make the handlebars to be more comfortable to hold. Apart from that, they are affordable and easy to install.
How do you change MTB grips?
You need to get rid of any bar and plugs before you remove the grips. You can use a screwdriver to remove them. Some of them feature an expansion plug system. Use an appropriate wrench to loosen and remove the plugs.
Check out my full guide to removing MTB grips here.
How do you remove mountain bike grips?
The best way to remove mountain bike grips is to put a little water under the grips and twist. This may take some time but once the water gets down the grip it should gradually slide off.
Today we looked at some of the best MTB grips you can get for a great price. Some were made with rubber, while others had aluminum reinforced to improve durability. Kraton was the material of choice for most of these grips as it provides good handling on the road.
Some grips also used soft contour as a replacement for Kraton and managed to pull through. Lock-on systems were seen on most of the grips, which is a great and crucial feature.
Overall, the grips kept one thing consistent, and that was quality. So, whichever product you pick from the list today, you will absolutely adore it.
Content Manager at Pedallers
Alex is a cycling expert at and focuses on reviewing bikes, accessories, and general cycling. He searches for the most up to date products that match the needs of cyclists across the world. Whether it's recent news or the best bike set-ups, Alex is a trusted source for anything around cycling.