How should a motorbike helmet fit?
Modern motorbike helmet fitment is the result of years of development, crash testing, computer modelling and safety testing, which can all be undone if your helmet doesn’t fit properly.
Although fitting a helmet isn’t an exact science, making sure it fits properly is very important. To make sure you are wearing the right helmet for your head, follow these steps to protect you on the road.
Measure your head
Wrap a tape measure horizontally around your head about one inch above your eyebrows. Once you've measured it several times, check a fitment chart for the branded helmet you want to buy and select the helmet closest to your head size.
Knowing if you have a round, oval, egg or reverse egghead is important to choosing a helmet so look at the fitment chart. If your head measures in between two sizes choose the smaller helmet size.
Try on the helmet
In the pursuit of better protection and reduced wind noise, helmet openings have got smaller over the years and it may be necessary to pull the chin straps apart with some force to get your head in. To avoid ripping them, don’t pull on the chinstrap covers, only the chinstrap itself.
Put the largest part of your head in first
Pulling the helmet on from the back (crown) of your head is much easier than trying to pull it on over your forehead. You may find that a helmet you thought was too small is actually just right once you pull it past the biggest part of your head.
A properly fitting helmet will be very snug but once you begin to wear your helmet, it will fit your head better and become a little bit looser.
Ensure your helmet is the absolute best fit for you by asking yourself the following questions:
- Does the helmet's inner lining fit snuggly around your head?
- Does the helmet's top pad press closely on the top of your head?
- Are the cheek pads touching your cheeks?
- Does the brow lining fit snuggly against your brow?
Also, you should not be able to insert your fingers between the lining and your brow. To check this thoroughly, make sure you pull the helmet on hard to compress the foam at the top and back. This is important because the foam will compress with wear over time.
Perform the following checks
Pull the helmet from side to side and up and down to make sure it doesn’t slide and move on your head.
After you have tightened the chinstrap, try to pull the helmet off by rotating it forward from the back.
Now, put your hand under the chin guard and try to push the helmet off by rotating it to the rear.
If you have been able to complete these exercises without the helmet coming off, you may have found the helmet for you.
Take your time
Don’t be afraid to wear your chosen helmet for a while in the shop to make sure it doesn’t become uncomfortable over time. It’s better to be thorough before you part with your cash so you can get on with trying the next option.