Buying the right helmet for kids
Even though there are many attractive and fun options in the market, kids’ helmets go beyond just being a cute accessory. It plays an essential role in keeping your child safe from potential life threatening head injuries. It can also help act as a buffer to protect the face from injury. That is why buying kids helmet is very important.
Importance of kid’s safety gear when riding bikes
Biking provides a sense of freedom and fun, but as we know it can be dangerous if the correct safety gear is not worn by the child. Due to the very nature of bike accidents it can cause immense harm to the head and face area. Especially in young children a head injury can lead to brain injury which is why a helmet is an essential safety equipment during any ride.
Selecting the right size
It should go without saying that the helmet should fit perfectly, being neither too tight nor too lose. It is best that each helmet is bought specific for the child so that it can function correctly and provide the expected protection. Remember sizing is key to a helmet providing the proper protection.
The below list will help you determine the correct helmet size for your child.
- When the chin strap is buckled in should have a snug and comfortable fit. The straps should form a ‘Y’ around the ears so that even when you try to move the helmet from side to side it should stay snug on your child’s head.
- The helmet edge should sit about one to two fingers width from your child’s eyebrows and should not move when the head it tilted backwards or forwards. Your child should be able to see the edge of the helmet when looking up.
- When your child opens his or her mouth, he/she should feel it pull down on the head. Also if the fit is good, your child should be able to see and hear clearly once the helmet is fastened.
If you cannot find a helmet that provides the perfect fit then it would be wise to have one custom made or professionally adjusted to fit. Remember the helmet is there to protect your child’s head from severe harm and should fit perfectly in order to do so.
Types of Kid’s helmets
Kid’s helmets come in three basic styles of which there are many variations. Depending on your child’s age, abilities and type of riding they do, you can choose from a Traditional Style, Mountain Bike Style or Skater style. Most come with ventilation vents to help keep the head cooler and more comfortable while also making the helmet lighter. Some come with a sun visor, especially mountain bike helmets, but if not you could buy googles instead.
Bike helmets are designed using different technologies such as Multi-directional Impact Protection System (MIPS) and WaveCel to reduce rotational force and the impact on the brain. MIPS is a thin, low friction inner liner that allows the outer shell to slide very slightly which reduces the rotational force on the skull.
Choosing bright and visible colours
Bike helmets for kids come in an array of bright colours which are not only attractive but also provide added protection in the form of visibility to other riders or motorists. Make your child part of the selection process so that they choose one that they love and would willingly wear.
Quality and durability
Quality and durability are the main features you should be looking for. Ensure the helmet meets safety standards and has a CPSC or Consumer Product Safety Committee sticker inside which certifies that it will provide a high level of protection in case of impact. Law requires that helmets manufactured after March 1999 meet the CPSC standard. If the helmet was made before 1999 then look for voluntary safety standard labels such as ASTM, ANSI or Snell.
One of the best ways to ensure you are buying a quality helmet is to purchase it from a reputed seller.
The tips given here will help you as a parent, make the best helmet choice for the safety of your children when they are out enjoying the thrill of riding their bikes.