This blog focuses on helmet safety guidelines.Whether you’re burning rubber on your bike or tearing up the slopes, a helmet is an important piece of safety equipment. Fortunately, modern advances in technology have improved the protective properties of helmets and made them lighter, more comfortable, and more stylish for active cyclists and skiers.
Whether you live in one of these states that require helmets or not, you should still wear one. It’s a simple and effective way to protect yourself from serious injury while riding a motorcycle.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), wearing a helmet can reduce the risk of brain injury while riding a motorcycle by 67 percent and the risk of death by 37 percent. That alone is reason enough to own (and wear) a motorcycle helmet.
In some areas, wearing a helmet while riding a bike is not mandatory. However, if you fall off your bike, you are especially vulnerable to head injuries
The purpose of a helmet is to protect your head in the unlikely event that you fall off your bike. In order to achieve this goal, the helmet must fit properly. In addition, comfort must be taken into account, with features such as weight and ventilation. Therefore, the overall design of the helmet will play a role in your decision on which helmet to purchase.
So there are a few things to consider when choosing a helmet
What does “MIPS” mean?
Many of the newer top-of-the-line helmets have “MIPS” technology. This stands for “Multi-Directional Impact Protection System”. The Multi-Directional Impact Protection System, (MIPS) is a thin, low-friction liner inside the helmet that allows the shell to slide over the skull a few millimeters during impact, reducing rotational forces and the energy transferred to the head in an oblique collision (also known as a non-frontal or multidimensional collision).
As many of us know, multiple concussions can have adverse consequences. As a result, many helmet manufacturers have chosen slightly heavier, less aerodynamic helmets to facilitate greater safety and security.
What features should each helmet have?
Look for the safety label
All helmets sold in the UK must meet legal safety standards. The British Standards Institution (BSI) standard is BS EN 1078. You can find this certification mark on all helmets sold in the UK. If you can’t find it, your helmet won’t adequately protect you.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC 1203) or American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM-2040) certification label means that the helmet has been tested and meets federal safety standards for North American consumers. Consumers who use helmets in Europe or other parts of the world. Make sure your helmet has the (CE EN1077) (CE EN -1078) certification label.
Removable and washable foam pads improve comfort. Some helmets also include a fly protector to stop insects from flying into your helmet while you ride. Your bike helmet should also have enough ventilation to keep you cool on warm days and to help you dry off sweat. A good helmet is easy to use and provides the highest level of comfort. Tip: Bring your cycling sunglasses with you when you try on your helmet. If you can find the perfect combination, this will save time and money.
Comfort and fit
The best fitting helmet must fit snugly around your head without being too tight or uncomfortable. First, measure the circumference of your head. Take a tape measure and wrap it around your head just above your ears and in the middle of your forehead. If needed, ask a friend or family member to help. All helmets have upper and lower size parameters, such as 53-57 cm. If your head circumference is at the upper limit of the size guide, choose a larger helmet.
Modern bicycle helmets usually have an adjustment wheel at the back of the helmet. Turning this wheel tightens it. The helmet should fit securely on your head even if the strap on your chin is not fastened.
A properly sized helmet should
Fit snugly around your head even without tightening the straps, partially compressing the padding inside
Be comfortable, i.e. not too tight
Not move on its own when you shake your head
Not wrinkle the skin of your head when you move the helmet to the sides or back and forth
Allows for fine adjustments by moving forward and backward
Fits well with your goggles and glasses
A helmet that allows airflow will make for a cooler ride and keep sweat (to a certain extent) under control. Some helmets have adjustable vents that allow you to fine-tune your airflow levels.
What types of helmets are available?
Today, there are many different types of helmets, depending on the purpose. With countless models and options to choose from, finding the right bike helmet is not an easy task.
Full-face – As the name implies, full-face helmets cover the entire head, usually with a cutout across the eyes and nose, and a clear plastic protective visor. The full-face style is also suitable for adding speakers and audio to a motorcycle helmet. There are many options, from headphones only to a full-featured walkie-talkie with Bluetooth integration.
Modular – Somewhere between an open helmet and a full-face helmet, a modular helmet features a chin bar that can be lifted or removed to allow more access to the face.
Off-road helmet – This type of motorcycle helmet features a longer chin and visor, while the face is somewhat open so the rider can wear goggles.
Open-face helmet – Also known as a “three-quarter” helmet, the open-face helmet provides protection for the ears, cheeks and the back of the head. However, it does not have the chin bar found in full-face helmets.
How to take care of your helmet
Your helmet takes care of your head, so you should take care of your helmet, too. While helmets are designed to take a beating, your helmet isn’t immune to age, the elements or bad smells. Here’s how to keep it in tip-top shape and potentially extend its life
After each use: Wipe the inside of your helmet with a cloth or towel to remove excess sweat.
Storage: Store your helmet in a travel case in a cool, dry place. Do not place the helmet inside the vehicle, as excessive heat will affect the helmet’s ability to absorb shock.
Cleaning: Helmets must be cleaned only with water, mild soap and a clean, soft cloth. Air dry only. Under no circumstances should products containing solvents – ammonia or acids – be used. Helmets may be damaged inconspicuously by petroleum products, cleaners, paints and adhesives.
A helmet should be replaced any time an accident occurs. Even if it does not appear to be damaged, a helmet can only withstand one impact. Our recommendation is that helmets should be replaced if they are more than three years old because the foam liner degrades over time and may not provide adequate protection in an accident.
Studies have shown that for cyclists, helmets reduce the risk of head injury by 69%, brain injury by 65% and serious brain injury by 74%. As more cycling injuries are reported each year, it is increasingly important to ride defensively and wear a helmet.
Helmets can save lives, thus dispelling the myth that more helmets on the slopes are associated with more risky behavior and more fatal accidents.