Cycling is a great way to stay in fit whether you are young or old. It also provides benefits than those that are health-related, including expanding your network, creating an alternative means of transportation, and many more. If done the right way and with the right gear, such as the best helmet for mountain bike, you will reap the most benefits from your cycling efforts.
Like other sports activities, biking requires that as a rider, you will follow the rules of the sport, and that includes wearing a helmet. The important thing about this matter, however, is that even the most experienced and most alert cyclist can still get hurt while on the road. According to the 2017 Road Safety Factsheet, head injuries that range from fatal skull fractures and brain damage to minor concussion and cuts, are quite common injuries that cyclists experience. In fact, hospital data shows that more than 40% of cyclists, and 45% of child cyclists, suffer head injuries while on the road.
The very simple rule that could probably save you from the most unexpected impact while riding your bike is to wear a helmet. As revealed by the Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute, wearing a proper fitting, Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) certified helmet could prevent 85 percent of biker’s head injuries. Not only will provide another protective layer for your head and your brain but wearing a good-fitting helmet with proper vents can also keep your head warm and dry. That is especially true when you are riding on a wet pavement or when the temperature is quite chilly. Wearing a light-colored helmet or one with a reflector will also make it easier for other motorists and other drivers to see you while you are on the road, especially when it is already dark outside.
Finding a perfect-fitting helmet is not easy, however. The truth of the matter is that there is an overwhelming number of helmets available in the market today that makes it quite difficult to find the right one that will provide the most benefits. That’s where this guide may come in handy. This primer will provide you with the basic information about helmets, including how to find the perfect fitting helmet that will do the job of protecting your head.
Once you’re done with this guide, you can start your search for what could be the best helmet that you can use while you are on the road.
Check the label
It says “bicycle helmet,” it should meet the standards set by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. It’s a part of the US regulations. There are other standards that exist, such as Snell’s B-95 standard, and this is even tougher than the CPSC standard. However, if you are just buying a bike helmet, you can be assured that a low-cost helmet also meets the same safety standards that a high-end helmet meets. A CPSC sticker inside the helmet will provide proof of this claim.
Consider the construction
Most of the bike helmets available in the market today are made of expanded polystyrene foam that is covered with a tough-but-thin plastic shell. This forms a protective layer that on impact, will shield your head and your skull. The foam gets crushed instead. In lower cost helmets, the plastic shell is bonded or taped to the foam, while in more expensive helmets, all the pieces are molded as one during the manufacturing process. Both of these helmets are safe. The molded types are just lighter and more aerodynamically designed. These helmets should be replaced after an unexpected impact to ensure the biker’s safety.
Size it up
Most lower-priced helmets are usually one-size-fits-all. They are normally designed with an adjustable internal strap for a better fit. Costlier helmets, however, are available in a range of sizes. Before you look for a better fitting helmet, you will need to get the measurement of your head. It should be cross your forehead and an inch or so above your eyebrows.
Look and feel
How the helmet of your choice will look and feel on your head is as important as how it will provide protection. Thus, you may also need to consider the color. A brightly-colored helmet will provide greater visibility while on the road. How about the cut? Do you prefer a helmet that provides greater coverage at the back of your head or do you think you will need one that will provide greater protection for your face?
Check the vents. Do you think one with a visor will work better for you? These things are a matter of personal preference that you also need to consider when deciding which will best suit you while you are on your bike and on the road.
Wear it properly
Your helmet should sit snuggly on the shape of your head. Make sure that it does not wobble or fall to either side of your face as this will make it easier to pedal and see where you are headed while you are on the road.
Your helmet should rest properly on your head, with the front of the helmet covering most of your forehead. If the helmet tilts and exposes your head, it will not protect your head. Connect the chin strap and tighten it so that it will rest firmly on your chin. In the end, you should not be able to move your helmet any more than an inch in any direction.
You will need to check your helmet every now and then as it the straps of the helmet may loosen. Give it a quick wiggle check before you hit the road.
Accidents happen when we least expect it and the only way you can prevent it is to take the necessary safety measures. Start with these basic guide so you can ride with confidence any time.