Still thinking about getting into motocross/enduro next year though. Lots of protection equipment available now to reduce injuries, and worse case oh well I guess I'll have to take a break and heal up eh.
Be careful with that thinking! Remember, every business is about making money. And, marketing is key!
My #1 example would be neck braces. I'm not convinced they are a good thing. Just like everything in life, they are a compromise. They trade one force for another. Sure, combined with your helmet they will limit your heads angular range of motion (if your helmet is worn correctly). But, at the same time, they will stretch the hell out of your spine under the wrong circumstances. Which could be even worse! Or transmit even more force to your vertebra than without, if the geometry of the impact is such that the brace impedes the bodies motion during a crash. I personally know 5 people that suffered compound fractures of the collar-bone from neck braces. If you really want to learn the dark side of neck-braces, watch some of Ryan Hughes videos.
Knee braces? That is a tougher argument. I think they are generally a good thing. I have never worn them. But, I feel I should (esp. with my size/weight).
These are really the only two controversial safety items (neck/knee braces). Helmets/boots are a no brainer. Chest protector is not a bad idea. I have never heard of anybody getting injured from wearing one. I have seen lots of guys bruised up, and even cut, from them. But, I have seen many more (including myself!) that would have been better off in a crash with one! I have suffered my share of broken ribs. I wear one now.
Just know, if you are serious about getting in to off-road riding:
The number one protection equipment is physical conditioning, and flexibility! Emphasis on the flexibility!
My flexibility is not great. But, almost 40 years exp. I now how to crash, LOL. But, if I was to think I wanted to get "really" serious about riding again?
My #1 focus would be flexibility. Followed by cardio.
EDIT: Also, I don't care what anybody says, there is NO better whole body exercise than riding a dirt bike at a vigorous pace. Period.
If you ride even a little bit aggressive? It will work every muscle. And I mean EVERY muscle. It works your reflexes. It works your mind.
It makes you think on the fly. And will really test your decision making ability. It really is the ultimate workout.