This article will be useful to all beginner motorcyclists. Here is an overview of some important considerations when choosing the right helmet.
Where to begin?
First of all, take your time. Buying a helmet is a very responsible task because it can literally save your life! Therefore, be prepared in advance that the choosing process can take some time.
What type of helmet to choose?
It all depends on where you plan to ride, whether it’ll be roads or off-road.
Motorcycle road helmet is suitable for driving at higher speeds on a highway. Each such helmet has a face shield that protects your eyes from small road trash, insects, as well as from rainfall.
Off-road or motocross helmet, on the contrary, is designed for a low speed. In addition to an off-road helmet, you will definitely need a good motorcycle eyewear, because in off-road helmets, the focus is on internal ventilation, and generally, there is no protective visor.
The minimum helmet standard that can really protect your head is “three quarter” or “full face”.
What should be a helmet? How does protection work?
A helmet protects by a tight fit to the head, using the area of the skull to disperse the impact. Your helmet should feel equally snug around the crown and have a hard shell, which can absorb most of the energy of impact. Tightly fitting inner layers will prevent your head to move inside the helmet. However, remember that the helmet should not cause any pain or too much pressure around your head.
Try to choose a streamlined helmet, which is free from protruding edges or corners. In case of falling, the smooth helmet surface will slide through the road pavement and will not catch on it. Well, a helmet with special air intake vents would look more impressive, but there is a high risk to break your neck in such helmet. Also, choose a helmet that weighs less. The lighter a helmet, the less would be the force of impact to the spine.
A new one or a second-hand?
It is better to buy a new helmet, if possible. Do not forget that over time it wears out and fails. Even if the previous owner treated it gently (didn’t drop or hit it), nevertheless, it has already been exposed to a number of factors. For example, over time, the inner layers compress and become harder, and consequently, the helmet will not fit so well. Clips rust and weaken over time and can fail too.
Also, don’t forget about ultraviolet rays, scratches and etc. Please take into consideration the physical and chemical aging of materials, resulting in loss of original protective characteristics after 5-7 years, even if the helmet was not exploited at all.
Nevertheless, if you have decided to buy a second-hand helmet, please carefully look it over; it should look like a new one. Also, choose a helmet that has been used for less than two years. However, even if these conditions have been met, there is no guarantee that the helmet still has all the protective characteristics.
That’s why we recommend buying a new helmet. However, you don’t have to buy a super expensive one, as you can find a helmet based on your financial capability. In any case, after a few seasons, you will have to buy a new helmet because, as was mentioned above, a helmet wears out over time, and materials lose their strength, even if the helmet just put on a shelf and no one has ever worn it.
Where to buy?
Buy a helmet in well-known and reliable stores. Prices may be a bit higher there than in small and dubious shops or junk markets, but the guarantee that you will buy a good quality helmet with the necessary characteristics is much higher in a good store! Also, there are more helmets to choose from. After all, different helmet types are designed for different head shapes. You have the opportunity to wear several models of different types in a store.
However, be ready that you may not buy anything in the first store. Don’t get upset and just go to another store (in this case, make sure that you have several store addresses in advance). Well, the search for your perfect helmet can take some time, but no worries; you will definitely buy the best one!