If there is any cycling accessory that you should buy even before buying the bike itself, it would be the Helmet. That too a quality one and simply just the cheapest one that the shop owner gives you for free.
If you are new to this sport or know very little about cycling helmets, you might find the information below helpful.
How exactly does a Bicycle Helmet work/protect me?
There are three main components to a cycling helmet.
- The outer shell of the helmet
- Foam on the inside
- The strap that holds the helmet in position
Each of the elements has their own responsibilities in protecting you.
The strap holds the helmet in position even if you are flying off your bike. Without the strap is in place the other two elements will not be able to do their job.
The outer shell’s responsibility is not crack on impact. It also helps you slide on the road/surface so that there is no jerk on the neck or your spin.
The foam’s job is to absorb the entire impact. It will collapse on impact and hence you should replace your helmet once it has had an accident or hard fall. The foam helps protect your skull and brain from a direct impact during an accident.
Things to keep in mind before you select a Bicycle Helmet:
- First thing first, please do not compromise on the quality. Wear a cheap helmet is equivalent of wearing a plastic cap. It will not help in any way during a mishap.
- The helmets mentioned below are unisex and can be used by both men as well as women.
- Buy the correct size of the helmet for your head. The size chart below will roughly guide you how bicycle helmet size is measured.
Benefits of Wearing a Helmet while Cycling:
Following are some of the benefits of wearing a helmet. The first one should be enough to make this accessory a routine.
- A study states that the use of helmets can have a 66 to 88% reduction in the risk of head or a brain injury amongst all age of bicyclists.
- Helmets are generally colourful and/or can have lights attached to it. This increases your visibility on the road. More visibility means fewer chances of a motorist knocking you over at night.
- Can offer protection to your eyes from wind and rain as some helmets come with a detachable visor.
- As you already know that road safety and respect of road law is really low in India. By wearing a helmet you help set an example for other fellow riders.
- Adds to your style (Not very important but a good benefit to have)
Types of Cycling Helmets:
Most widely used cycling helmets are mainly of three variations.
1. Recreational or Commuter Helmets:
These are the most common type of helmets sold on the market. Most of the helmets on my list will also fall in this list.
They are designed for beginners and/or commuters and are not designed for long distance ride or races. These helmets will often come with a lot of functionality like visors, lights etc
2. Road Helmets:
These helmets are designed for speed and will have really good ventilation to keep your head try and cool during long distance races or rides.
They are slightly more elongated and streamlined to make to aerodynamic. They are lightweight and are generally little more expensive compared to commuter helmets of the same quality.
3. MTB Helmets:
MTB riders often take up offroad tracks to test their riding skills. The MTB helmets are thereby designed to be the most robust.
But on the hindsight, this also makes them the least ventilated helmets out of the three.
How to Choose the Right Size?
I have already mentioned at the beginning of this article on how to measure the size of your head. Buying the right sized helmet will depend on you measuring the circumference correctly. If you still haven’t done that scroll right up and have a look at that image.
Once you have done that, the table below will provide you with rough estimates of the helmet size that you need. Do remember, each brand might slightly vary their product and might not fit the measurements provided below accurately.
General helmet sizing guideline: (Based on the circumference of your head)
- Extra-small: below 47 to 49 cms
- Small: 54cm – 57cm
- Medium: 58cm– 60cm
- Large: 61cm – 62cm)
- Extra-large: above 63cm
- Men – One size fits all: 54cm – 61cm
- Women – One size fits all: 50cm – 57cm
- Kids – One size fits all: 46cm – 57cm
Best Cycling Helmets in India:
1. Merida Charger KJ201
- The helmet is suitable for head size 58 to 62 cms (Check the image at the beginning of the article to know how to measure your head correctly)
- Made using a single in-mold construction. This adds to the structural integrity of the product.
- Comes with a removable visor.
- Has a micro dial facility to ensure the helmet fits well to your head
- Is highly ventilated with 21 holes.
- The weight of the product is 250 grams (without the visor)
2. Btwin AeroFit 900
- All their helmets are of really good quality as against the price.
- Most of the models are available in different sizes. You can choose the size that will fit your head.
- They offer free shipping and a 2 years warranty on most of the top models (Refer the individual product page for specifics.)
3. Schwinn Trasher
- The fit of the helmet can be easily adjusted to ensure a good grip on your head
- Has 21 airflow vents to keep you ventilated during a long distance ride
- The material used on the inside contains moisture adsorbing pads. This further helps you remain dry during your ride
- Has a cap like shade on the front of the helmet
4. Triumph Bicycle Helmet
- All their helmets look good and stylish
- Comes with a small LED light on the back. roadhelmets
- This is a great addon for someone who commutes late in the evening or at night time
- Made using lightweight but very durable fibre. The foam used on the inner side is also of good quality
- Has nicely designed and integrated vents for air circulation
- Can be used by both men as well as women
5. Cockatoo Helmets
- The shell is made using a type of plastic (Not recommended for safety)
- Available in wide variety of colours and designs
- The size can be easily adjusted, plus the helmet is available in various sizes
- Uses vents to keep your head ventilated
When to replace your Helmet?
You will need to replace your helmet if your helmet has been in a crash or bumped against something really hard. Do not use a helmet that was not stored correctly for a year or so. Excessive heat, pollutants or moisture can harm the integrity of the material used.
If you notice any cracks to bumps on the outer shell, you should replace the helmet.
Remember, when not in use. Store your helmet well inside your home.
Always wear a helmet when you go out and ride safe!
Original Post Bicycle XP