How to Make Your Bike Helmet Fit

How to Make Your Bike Helmet Fit

The rule is simple: If you ride a bike, you need to wear a helmet.
There are an overwhelming number of helmets on the market to choose from. Fortunately, we’re here to help.

Today, most of the bike helmets are made of expanded polystyrene foam (like what’s found in picnic coolers) covered with a tough-but-thin plastic shell. On impact, the foam gets crushed instead of your skull. In less expensive helmets, the plastic shell is glued or taped to the foam; in more expensive helmets, the pieces are moulded together during the manufacturing process. Either type of helmet is safe, though moulded helmets are lighter, have more vents, and are generally sexier (if helmets can be sexy).

Size it up: Lower-priced helmets are often one-size-fits all; you simply adjust an internal strap to get the helmet snug. Higher-priced helmets are available in a range of sizes.

Look: Most riders probably won’t admit it, but the look and feel of the helmet is just as important as how well it protects their grey matter. If you overheat easily, the more vents the better. But how you look and feel out on the trail is still something to think about.
Wear it right: Low, level, and snug: That’s how your helmet should sit on your head.

Look in a mirror. Your helmet should sit level on your head, and the front of the helmet should cover most of your forehead. If the helmet tilts back and exposes your forehead, it’s not going to protect you.

Connect the chin strap, and tighten it so that it’s snug beneath your chin-you should barely be able to fit a finger between the strap and your chin. Adjust the side straps so that the point of the V sits just below your ears.

Push the helmet back on your head. Can you move the helmet more than an inch? Tighten the straps in front of your ears (loosen the rear straps so that the V points still sit just below your ears). If you can push the helmet forward, adjust the straps behind your ears. In the end, you shouldn’t be able to move the helmet more than an inch in any direction.

Check often: Helmet straps tend to loosen, so give your helmet a quick wiggle-check before every outing. Tighten the straps if you can move the helmet more than an inch in any direction. Then enjoy the ride.

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