How To Choose A Bike Helmet

How To Choose A Bike Helmet

Cycling helmets aren't generally a huge consideration in the bike riding experience, but they may prove to be the difference in survival in the event of a crash. Wearing a helmet while riding a bicycle is always a good idea, regardless of the length or familiarity of the route. When shopping for a new bike helmet, there are a few factors to consider, and picking the right helmet this riding season will make all the difference.
Here are a few tips to help you in choosing the right fit, style and functions of your bike helmet to match your needs and riding style.

 

1 Proper Fit

Getting the right fit is essential with any helmet. Poor fit can compromise protection and cause discomfort. Helmets come in various sizes and many feature adjustment modulation within sizing for a precise and effective fit.

Brands will typically have 'small', 'medium', and 'large' size helmets, but they are not governed by any standards, so what is a medium in one brand may not be the same as a small in another. As a result, you will need to measure the circumference of your head and check the helmet size to ensure a proper fit. And to find your head circumference, wrap a flexible tape measure around the widest part of your head - about one inch above your eyebrows. Or wrap a string around your head, then measure the length of string using a yardstick. The helmet should fit snugly enough to remain in place if you were to hang upside without the aid of the retention system.

The following is an example of the information you'll find on a bike helmet size chart, with approximate sizing measurements:

Extra small: below 20" (51cm)

Small: 20"–21.75" (51cm–55cm)

Medium: 21.75"–23.25" (55cm–59cm)

Large: 23.25"–24.75" (59cm–63cm)

Extra large: above 24.75" (63cm)

 

2 Match Your Riding Style   

 

Helmets come in different styles with features designed for specific riding styles. The right type of helmet will not only offer protection, but will also enhance your enjoyment of the ride. Bike helmets can be divided into five categories:

- Recreational Bike Helmets are suited for casual riding. They come in at an economical price point while still offering basic impact protection.

- Road Bike Helmets are one of the lightest, most ventilated, and most aerodynamic options. 

- Mountain Bike Helmets provide better cover for the rear/side of the head due to the increased likelihood of crashing. In addition, they have an excellent ventilation system, are often visored, and come in both full-face and half-shell styles. 

- Full Face Helmet provides comprehensive protection for your entire head. It extends the coverage to your chin and mouth. Featuring good ventilation and safety performance, it is well suited to professional athletes and bicycle enthusiasts. However, their weight will be heavier and their price will be higher as a result. 

- BMX Helmet usually have a simpler design and are not as aerodynamic as other types of helmets, so the ventilation is not so good. It is more suitable for slower riding and skating. Nevertheless, many people love it for its good looks.

 

3 Technology & Features

 

Helmets are coming out with new technology each year. Designed to be lighter, cooler, and more aerodynamic while still providing rider impact protection. Helmets are coming with built-in mounts for lights and action cameras. Magnetic buckles have become popular for their ease of use while wearing gloves and their ability to stay buckled during impact. Adding these types of features to a helmet will increase its price point, but many riders outweigh the benefits of modern features over the price of the helmet. 

 

Bike helmets come in so many different types. The process of selecting a bike helmet can quickly become overwhelming. In the end, you will need to determine your biking needs. Next, narrow down your selection by size and fit. Don't assume that a more expensive helmet is more reliable simply because it is more expensive. Make sure you do your research, but also have fun browsing and trying on different styles of bike helmets until you find one that suits you! After all, it’s a priceless investment.


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