There’s a good reason why helmet manufacturers invest incredible amounts of time and money to make their helmets the way they are. As a matter of fact, the reason why one rider may pick one helmet over another is simply because the first helmet had one specific benefit that the other lacked. The best way to understand what exactly that special feature is that would make you want to choose one helmet over another depends on what type of riding you do.
Here are some basic questions to get you thinking: “How long do I usually ride my bike?” “Do I ride my bike year round?” “What do I hope to accomplish as a rider?” By determining the answers to these questions (and please, be very honest, you’d only be hurting yourself if you weren’t) you can begin to take the right steps to finding the perfect match.
For those who intend on travelling long distances, touring, or ride for longs stretches of time, comfort and versatility should be your main focuses, and your helmet better deliver. Not only do you want a plush interior, but you’d also want it to be quiet and light to minimize rider fatigue. If you intend on riding over multiple seasons, your helmet needs to suit every one of them. For this, modular helmets, flip down sun visors, and adjustable vents are absolutely essential for giving you the comfort that you need for arduous rides.
For riders that push the limits on sportbikes, safety and performance is everything. Most riders prefer good ventilation to keep the temperatures at a manageable level, as well as a strong shell and aerodynamics for high speeds. Generally, you are looking for a carbon fiber or multi-material shell that combines aerodynamic shape and strength. Many are surprised at how much of an impact aerodynamics has when really twisting the grip. Since high speed performance is the main focus, these helmets have little to no noise protection and are less comfy than helmets made for touring.
If you feel like you don’t fit into any of the above situations, don’t worry about it. The majority of these options/features once found only on specific helmets have since made its way into nearly every standard helmet on the market. Everything from washable and removable liners to sun shields, locking shields, Bluetooth capability, and more – at all price ranges. So even if you aren’t some hotshot rider setting a new world record or dominating the trans-American interstate, there are plenty of helmets that will suit your needs.