The motorcycle helmet is the most important piece of safety equipment for a dirt biker. The helmet’s whole purpose is to limit the forces that the brain may experience during an accident. All humans respond differently to sudden jerks or accelerations applied to the brain. However, an 80G impact to the head will produce a concussion.
A good motorcycle helmet provides the rider with impact protection, comfort, ventilation, good vision, lightweight, easy cleaning, and the latest style.
Before getting to the tips, let us understand what G-force is and why it matters so much in off-road biking.
What is “G-force?”
The term “G” refers to the acceleration of a body due to the force of earth’s gravity. For example, if your head experienced a 150G hit, that is a force 150 times stronger than the earth’s gravitational pull. That force works out to 4830 feet per second or approximately 11 mph.
A motocross helmet won’t pass the Snell Certification test mentioned below if it transmits anything more than 290G’s to the brain after slamming headfirst into the ground at a speed of 19.2 mph because it is likely that forces above this level could cause catastrophic brain damage.
A 400G force blow to the head is more than enough to kill you. The helmet’s job is to absorb a large portion of that energy and give up its life expectancy to save yours.
Most people do not understand this important aspect. A bike’s helmet is a disposable piece of safety equipment. Even a mild crash can compress the helmet’s foam material no matter what the outer shell of the helmet may look like. If you were to take a successive hit in a nearby location, the dirt bike helmet might not do its job!
Having understood this important concept, here are some important criteria to consider before making your next helmet purchase for riding your bike.
Proper sizing is the most important consideration of purchasing a motorcycle helmet. Some speculate that up to 80% of motorcycle riders are wearing a motorcycle helmet that is a size too big! Not all helmet manufacturers sizing feels the same to the rider, and no human head has the same shape.
Your new dirt bike helmet should provide uniform distributed compression around your head’s surface. This is the fit scenario in which the helmet has been designed and is the best chance that the helmet stays in position in the event of a crash.
The motorcycle helmet should not feel extremely tight (Pressure Point) in any area. However, it should provide uniform compression and be tight enough that the head can’t bounce inside the motorcycle helmet during a violent hit
Good quality motocross helmets and ATV helmets can vary from approximately $200 to $900. Price of a helmet has little to do with how well it will protect your head. However, often you will be paying for better materials, better fit & finish, and the motorcycle helmet passing additional safety standards. Consider going with Fox Helmets. They offer great protection at affordable prices.
Note: Motocross gear is not cheap. Determine your budget in advance and don’t compromise on getting full protection.
Look for a dirtbike helmet which offers an adjustable visor with adequate length to provide both sun and “roost” protection during riding. Also, evaluate the method in which the visor is attached to the helmet and whether it can be moved easily if bumped or jostled during a hard landing.
Observe the chin bar and look for distance relative to the face. The closer proximity to the face, the greater protection the chin bar will offer. Ensure the mouth guard has adequate ventilation and will flow plenty of air, yet has a design which will offer filtration and be easy to clean.
Your bike’s helmet can be the difference between life and death in the event of a crash. You don’t want to regret not making an informed decision while purchasing it. We hope the tips mentioned in this article will help you make it.