Choosing a helmet:
Fit is crucial.
Adjustment is important:
- The helmet should fit snugly but not uncomfortably, with your head partially compressing the soft foam pads inside--even before the straps are tightened.
- The front edge should be no more than 1 inch above your eyebrows
- The straps form a V under and slightly forward of each earlobe.
See: How to Choose a Bike Helmet: Sizing Guide - REI Expert Advice
- With the straps fastened, push up firmly on the front edge of the helmet. If it moves back, the straps are too loose.
- Push the helmet side to side and front to back: It should be snug enough that the motion wrinkles the skin at your temples.
- o test that a buckled chin strap is tight enough, open your mouth halfway; the helmet should press down on the top of your head as you do.
- Grab the back tip and try to pull it up over the top of your head to the front. If the front of your helmet slips down, shorten the back straps.
and Best Bike Helmet Buying Guide - Consumer Reports
One newer offering in helmet technology is the Multi-directional Impact Protection System (MIPS). This thin, low-friction liner inside the helmet allows the outer shell to slide a few millimeters across the skull on impact, reducing rotational force and the amount of energy transferred to the head. Rotational force is thought to be a factor in concussions.
In Consumer Reports tests of two pairs of the same brand and model helmets--one MIPS, one not--the MIPS helmets reduced rotational force up to 43 percent compared with the non-MIPs helmets.
There are several styles of helmet.
See Bicycle Helmet Types | helmets.org
and Helmets for different cycling disciplines explained | EvansCycles.com, UK
There are other types, childrens, full-face (for dare devels)
- Road bike
They have an elongated shape.
They assume you will fall onto flat pavement, so covering a little bit in the back is enough to stop your head from hitting.
They include racing and time trial (TT) helmets which are more aerodynamic with fewer vents.
- Commuter bike
The term coined by Bell in 2004 when they introduced their Metro model. It has come to mean a helmet with a rounded shape
- Mountain Trail bike (MTB);
They usually have fewer vents and they cover more of the back and sides of the head.
They usually have a visor. A visor may also obstruct your vision during road cycling, particularly if your road bike has a more aggressive geometry
Mountain Trail bike falls are more likely to be onto something pointy like a rock or a root and you can hit the back of your head.
Note, however that not every helmet in this style actually has additional rear coverage. Manufacturers know that many buyers are looking for that, so they are designed with the L shape from the side, but when you put on many of them and position them correctly on your head the "additional coverage" disappears as the front edge comes down to your brow line.
Helmet Ratings Virginia Tech College of Engineering Tests 2018
They tested 30 helmets with scores from 10.9 (best) to 25.3 (2 stars).
They used the the STAR protocol originally developed for football helments to estimate the incidence of concussion that a college football player may experience.
A lower score offers better protection
|Helmet ||Cost ||Score
|Bontrager Ballista MIPS ||$200
|Louis Garneau Raid MIPS ||$80
|Bell Stratus MIPS ||$150
|Specialized Chamonix MIPS ||$75
|SCOTT Arx PLUS (MIPS) ||$100
|Bontrager Quantum MIPS ||$100
|Specialized S-Works Prevail II ||$225
|Smith Optics Overtake ||$163
|Bell Draft MIPS ||$60
The Bontrager Ballista is designed for racers with a lot of aerodynamic testing and claim with only 3 vents in front they get better ventilation than their competitors. Of course when you're going 30 MPH only 2 holes would probably give you good ventilation.
Louis Garneau Raid MIPS
Specialized Chamonix MIPS
Consumer Reports Review 2016
Scores ranged from 88 to 22.
CR Rating - Consumer Reports 2016
Ease of use
|Scott Arx Plus ||$92 ||88 ||* ||5 ||4 ||5 ||5
|Cannondale CAAD MIPS bike helmet ||$80 ||85 ||* ||5 ||4 ||3 ||5
|Giro Register MIPS bike helmet ||$65 ||85 ||* ||5 ||5 ||3 ||5
|Bell Gage Mips bike helmet ||$195 ||83 ||* ||5 ||3 ||5 ||5
|Bontrager Circuit MIPS bike helmet ||$150 ||83 ||* ||5 ||4 ||5 ||5
|Giro Register bike helmet ||$45 ||83 || ||5 ||5 ||3 ||5
|Bell Draft ||$40 ||82 || ||5 ||5 ||3 ||5
|Bontrager Circuit ||$80 ||80 || ||5 ||4 ||3 ||5
Scott Arx Plus
Bike Helmet Buying Guide | Consumer Reports
Bicycle Helmet Ratings - Virginia Tech College of Engineering Tests 2018
Bicycle Helmet STAR Protocol
Bicycle Helmet Ratings Overview | Consumer Reports 2016
last updated 3 Oct 2018