How should a bike helmet fit? A guide to fitting bike helmets
If you’re in the market to purchase a brand new bike helmet, simply continue reading to discover how to properly fit a bike helmet. As a bonus, you’ll also discover a few tips and tricks, which will help you purchase the right helmet for your needs.
Why is important to choose a helmet which fits you well?
The Bicycle Helmet Saftey Institute recently conducted a series of tests which proved that wearing the right size helmet, can reduce your risk of incurring a serious head injury by 85%.
How should a bike helmet fit?
Ideally, your helmet should sit level on your head. With the front of your helmet fully covering your forehead. A great tip to remember when you go shopping for a bike helmet is that a helmet that fits you right, should cover the same areas of your head, which would be covered by a traditional baseball cap.
The chin strap of your helmet should fit snugly underneath your chin. So that you can fit a single finger between your chin and your helmet’s chin strap. If your chin strap is any looser, your head will move around inside your helmet, while if your chin strap is too tight you increase your chances of choking in the event of an accident. Thankfully, most helmets offer adjustable chinstraps. Lastly, ensure that the v parts of your chin strap sit just below your ears.
Before you head out on the open road, try to push your helmet down and then up. If your helmet moves more than an inch in either direction, your helmet is too big and you’ll need to try a smaller size.
If in doubt, just remember, your bike helmet should always fit low and snug against your head.
How to choose the perfect helmet: 5 Helpful tips
1. Avoid purchasing a helmet which only comes in one size
High-quality helmets, which you can trust to protect your head in a collision, come in a wide variety of sizes which usually range from xs-xl. There’s no point purchasing a cheap helmet, which claims that one size fits all as it’s highly unlikely that it will fit your head snugly.
2. Measure your head with a tape measure, before you start to browse stores
Many brands offer handy size charts. So it’s well worth getting a friend or family member to measure the circumference of your head with a tape measure before you indulge in a little online shopping or head out to your local bike store. As you’ll be hard-pressed to find a bike store which boasts a tape measure, which you can borrow!
Once you’ve found your size helmet on the size chart you’re looking at it’s still advisable to try it on. As size charts often vary from store to store and are only meant as a rough guide.
3. Look for a CPSC sticker in the inside of your helmet
In the US, helmets must meet the Consumer Product Saftey Commission’s rigorous safety standards, before they are sold. To ensure that the helmet, which you’re interested in purchasing has passed safety standards, simply check for a CPSC approval sticker. Which should be located inside your helmet.
4. Choose a helmet which features straps which are easy to adjust
Over the course of a four-hour bike ride, you may need to tighten or loosen your chin strap. If you’re unable to tighten your chin straps on the go, you’re far better off opting for a different helmet.
5. Decide whether or not you’d like your helmet to feature a peak
If you plan on mountain biking down muddy trails, you’ll need a cycling helmet which boasts a large visor. Which will prevent stones, debris, mud, and dust from flicking up into your eyes an obscuring your vision. If however, you plan on cycling primarily on roads, you may be able to get away with a helmet which offers a small peak, instead of a large visor.
So if you’re in need of a brand new bike helmet, simply use the tips listed above in order to choose and fit, your brand new helmet. Keep in mind, that most manufacturers recommend replacing your helmet every 5 years. Regardless of whether or not you experience a serious crash.