How to Choose a Bicycle Helmet
Few people on the road choose not to wear their seat belts while in a car. So, why would anyone ride a bicycle on the same city streets without a helmet? It just doesn’t make sense. Helmets are designed to make riding a bike safer, more accessible, and easier. In some areas, laws require the use of a helmet while riding on public roadways and paths. By law, all helmets sold in the country must meet the regulations of the Consumer Products Safety Commission. Some are even endorsed by other organizations.
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Types of Helmets
Believe it or not, there are actually three basic types of helmets: recreational, road, and mountain. All models are designed specifically to protect your head from injury. There are, however, clear-cut differences between the three.
- Recreational – Recreational helmets are an economical choice for anyone, no matter the type of rider. They often have a visor to shield the sun.
- Road – Road helmets are designed specifically for enthusiasts who ride on city streets alongside cars. They typically forego the screen to ensure reduced weight and an unobstructed view.
- Mountain – Mountain helmets are designed to ventilate at low speeds. They’re distinguished by their visor, rear-head coverage, and secure fitting. Some even feature full-face protection for riding down a hill or mountain.
Finding the Right Size
When selecting a bicycle helmet, sizing is crucial. Most helmets run in small, medium, large, and extended.
To find your perfect size, wrap a flexible tape measure around the biggest portion of your noggin – about 1-inch above your eyebrows. Then, match the measurement to the size. You want to select a helmet that fits flush on your head.If a helmet is too loose, it may not do its job of protecting your head.
- Extra-Small – Below 20”
- Small – 20” – 21.75”
- Medium – 21.75” – 23.25”
- Large – 23.25” – 24.75”
- Extra-Large – 24.75”