Learn to wrench on your bike
Choose your own motorcycle
Make your own mistakes (with reasonable approach)
Educate your moto brain
Ride alone, somewhere you’ve never been
I prefer having knee AND hip armor in my riding pants, always. Most hip protectors are rather thick and uncomfortable. But Dainese created 2 products that I think work really well as hip protectors. One of which is clearly designed by Dainese as a Hip Protector (pictured above). They're smaller, about 3in wide by 5in tall and designed to fit specifically into their riding jean models that offer hip protector pockets.
But the other armor they make with the same lightweight, strong material are Dainese Pro Shape Knee Protectors for their riding jeans:
Both of these protectors are CE Certified and are Level 1. I put the knee protectors in my Gear 2's hip armor pockets! They're comfortable, light and I don't even know they're there. Each pair costs less than $40, definitely a worthy investment.