It does not take a severe injury to appreciate the safety and protection that a helmet provides while skiing or snowboarding. However, a helmet that does not fit properly will not provide adequate protection. Remember that all helmets have limits, so enjoy your time in the snow responsibly.
When choosing a snow helmet, be sure it meets the minimal requirement, as explained in the U.S. code ASTM F0240. It is imperative to use best ski helmet you can afford, don’t try and save a few dollars by buying a cheap one.
Finding the right fit
It is essential to find a helmet with a secure fit. A helmet is useless if it does not stay secure on your head. Goggles can drastically change the fit of the helmet, so be sure to bring them with you as you try on helmets.
To correctly measure your head, position a tape measure slightly above your ears and one inch above your eyebrows. Keep the measuring tape level, while wrapping the tape around your head. This will measure the exact circumference, allowing you refer to a chart in the store or online.
The proper fit feels tight, but not uncomfortable. As with any helmet, it should not be able to shift around on the head, up and down or back and forth. Shaking your head in the helmet is a great way to test the security. If the helmet moves on your head, you need to try another size.
- The helmet should sit low enough on the head to shield your forehead. It should sit no higher than one inch above the eyebrow. There should be no void space between the helmet lining and the head.
- The helmet should be low enough to protect your forehead and high enough so that you can see. Be sure that the helmet meets up with the top of the goggles, and there are no gaps between the two. You don’t want to miss anything, especially a tree, so make sure that it does not obstruct your vision in any way.
Chinstrap and Buckle
It is vital that the buckle of the chinstrap is secured properly. When selecting a chinstrap, consider that it should be pressed against the throat, and should not come off in impact. A good way to measure the recommended tightness is to grab some grub. The chinstrap should remain tight enough to eat, but loose enough that you don’t choke.
Ski / Snow Board Helmet Construction
In-mold style helmets are constructed by a single process that fuses the shell and the liner together. This style of helmet is high in luster and are considerably lighter than the injection-molded helmets.
This style helmet offers far greater protection from high impacts when compared to the in-mold helmets. Injection-molded helmets are manufactured by a two part process that secures the EPS liner to the ABS shell.
Snow helmets can be purchased, in which the ear pads and liner can be removed to compensate for temperature changes.
Ski and Snow Board Helmet Parts
Choosing the right helmet for the right activity, is paramount for safe skiing. Understanding that bike or skateboard helmets are drastically different than snow helmets are particularly important. For example, snow helmets cover your ears. They also have an inner liner that absorbs moisture and maintain a steady temperature around your head.
The shell is the hard exo-layer of the helmet that is designed to absorb impact. The shell is engineered in a way that allows the energy from the point of impact to be dispersed throughout the entire shell. The shell is typically manufactured from acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) plastic.
Much like the shell, the liner is designed to absorb impact, and is manufactured from a material known as expanded polystyrene foam (EPS). At the point of impact, EPS will compress, absorbing any energy that escapes the shell.
Helmets can be purchased with various non-essential features, exclusively created to enhance the experience. These features include shell vents, liner options, camera mounts, google compatibilities, various audio options, helmet storage options and much more. It is important to consider the conditions in which you will be skiing or snowboarding in order to choose the best helmet for meeting your needs.
CAUTION – Any helmet that is subjected to a serious impact, should not be used again.