A snowboard helmet is a protective gear worn on the head to protect the snowboarder. Just like the motorcycle helmet, it is meant to protect your head in case of a fall or a collision. Have you ever been involved in a snowboarding crash or fall? Well, if the answer is no then you are lucky. Snowboarding accidents can be fatal especially if you suffer head injuries.
The snowboard should, therefore, be made of a hard outer shell and a soft interior lining. A hard outer shell will absorb most of the shock during a crash. If you are considering buying a snowboard helmets, the following are some safety features you should check.
A proper snowboard helmet should be able to fit you snugly. This means it should not be too tight or too loose. It should give you that comfortable, warm and cozy feeling when you put it on. If your helmet rocks back and forth when you wear it, this indicates that it’s too loose.
How do you make sure it’s the right size? You can use a tape measure to measure the circumference of your head. By measuring the largest part of your head you get the right size to fit you. Using these results you can now look up the helmet packaging chart and compare. This will ensure an exact fit.
When wearing your helmet it should not move from side to side. A sizing mechanism should be an available feature here to adjust the size. Your helmet should fit properly above your goggles with no gap between. It should not be so low to push goggles down or block vision.
A right fit for your helmet should be just low enough to protect your forehead. Make sure there is no space between your head and the internal lining. It’s important to note that the right helmet should always be in place in case of a crash. A proper fit may mean the difference between life and death.
The chinstrap is a safety feature for both the motorcycle helmet and snowboard helmet. This strap fits below your chin and against your throat. It is meant to reduce the chance of your helmet coming off on impact.
A chinstrap should always fit comfortably so that you are able to chew. Always adjust the chin and ear straps to ensure a close cozy fit. The chinstrap is fitted with a soft cover to protect you from grazing your chin. Some added feature of the chinstrap includes bright colors. These colors ensure other snowboarders spot you in case of an emergency.
Chinstraps should slide over each other or clip. Make sure you check that this happens before snowboarding for your own safety. Recent snowboard helmet productions are looking forward to making the chinstrap magnetic. These chinstraps are more secure as the straps can connect without looking.
Goggles Safety And Compatibility
Majority of snowboard helmets have a strap or a clip to hold goggles in position. The clips are normally at the back of the helmet. This makes the goggles detachable, meaning you can remove them and wear under your helmet.
Some helmets are fitted with grooves around them to keep the goggles fixed. Goggles need to fit well in the front of the helmet. Goggles that do not fit well with the helmet will expose you to cold. The gap left between can leave your forehead freezing and can be excruciatingly painful.
The issue of goggles and helmet compatibility can be easily solved. You can sort this issue by procuring both goggles and helmet from the same manufacturer. Alternatively, you can bring your goggles when buying your snowboard helmet or vice versa. This is vital to ensuring that goggles fit properly to enhance your safety during snowboarding.
When it comes to construction, a snowboard helmet is different from a motorcycle helmet. Snowboard helmets have features such as thermal sensitive components and ear coverage among others. There are two main types of Snowboard constructions.
a). ABS/ Hardshell construction – These helmets come in more rounded shapes. Their outer shell is made of ABS a durable shock resistant plastic. Its’ inner lining is made of lightweight closed cell insulation (EPS). Their characteristics include:
- More expensive
- More vents for ventilation
Did you know that the outer hard shell spreads impact all over the helmet in case of a crash? This reduces the force of impact and protects your head against major traumas.
Snowboard helmet vents are ports for letting in cool air and warm sweaty air out. Some helmets have detachable vent plugs; hence you have to take them off to regulate airflow. Modern helmets have push levers/switch you can use to adjust the vents for airflow. This ensures you do not interfere with your snowboard ride. Vents ensure that you get the needed warmth or cooling for the most comfortable ride.
Multi-Directional Impact Protection (MIPS)
This is an added safety feature in a number of helmets. The MIPS design is designed to offer extra protection from brain traumas. This is in the case where the crash happens from an angle instead of straight on.
If this happens the brain is likely to be injured by turning in the skull. Helmets with MIPS design have their outer shell moving over an added inner layer. In return, the helmet absorbs and spreads harmful forces, therefore, protecting your brain.
It is very important for a snowboarder to choose the right snowboard helmet. Just like the motorcycle helmet, the snowboard helmet is designed to ensure your safety. Snowboard helmets are built with advanced thermal insulation to protect you from cold. A snowboarder should insist on a well-vented helmet to regulate airflow inside the helmet.
Comfort should also be another feature to consider when purchasing a snowboard helmet. The snowboard helmet you choose should fit you snugly. A snowboarding accident can be fatal. It can also cause serious head injuries. Hence the need for a proper safety snowboard helmet cannot be over-emphasized.