I just got a couple new CE Level 2 back armor pads to upgrade a couple of my jackets. Very thick and stiff – looks and feels the business. But, I'm not sure if the flat side should face the road, or my back. Here are a couple pics showing each side. The pics don't adequately show the extent of how much the pad sticks out in certain areas on the shaped side. It's pretty substantial.
I did search the interwebs, and on this forum, and couldn't find a consensus. On the one hand, the side with the texture and lumbar ridge seems like it would breathe better, but might apply pressure in an accident. On the other hand, why would they mold specific shapes into the side that hits the deck? The literature that came with it has lots of info, except which side faces your back when sliding it into the jacket's pocket. Does anyone have a definitive answer?