How to Wear Bicycle Helmets

How to Wear Bicycle Helmets
To wear a bike helmet or not? The answer is a no-brainer--and if you don't wear one and have a bike accident, the phrase "no-brainer" could take on a whole new meaning.

Instructions

Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Buying the helmet

Things You’ll Need:
  • Bike helmet
  • Bike helmet
Step 1
Heads come in different shapes and sizes, and helmets are not a one-size-fits-all product. Helmets should be tried on in the bike store, much as you would try on a pair of shoes: in person.
Step 2
Buy a REAL bike helmet, not a kayak helmet or a Nazi storm trooper helmet, which are not engineered to protect your head from a hard crash on a mountain road or on a city street. Make sure the helmet has a seal of approval from the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), American National Standards Institute (ANSI) or Snell Memorial Foundation.
Step 3
By the same token, go to a REAL bike store, not the toy department, to purchase a helmet to get a certified product.

Fitting the helmet

Step 1
A bike helmet should fit on the TOP of your head not the back of your head. This is a frequent mistake new helmet owners make.
Step 2
Adjust the chin strap through its "take up" loop to make it tighter.
Step 3
Open the two side locks (they're just below your ears if you're wearing the helmet) and adjust the straps coming down the sides.
Step 4
Your goal is to have a snug fit for the helmet with no wiggle-room. You should barely be able to place your finger under the chin strap.
Step 5
Your ears need to fit comfortably in the triangle of the two straps coming down the sides.
Step 6
The helmet should not fit so low on your brow that you can't clearly see the road in front of you.
Step 7
Take advantage of the extra pads that come with many helmets and place them at various points inside the helmet to help the fit.

Tips & Warnings

 
Ask the bike store clerk to help you open the locks and do the tightening or loosening of the straps for the first time.
 
If your helmet has cracks, replace it. The helmet may not withstand another severe blow. Don't borrow someone's helmet if it doesn't fit; that quick fix could have terrible consequences if you have an accident.
 
If your helmet has cracks, replace it. The helmet may not withstand another severe blow.
 
Don't borrow someone's helmet if it doesn't fit; that quick fix could have terrible consequences if you have an accident.

Article Written By Nancy Beverly

Nancy Beverly has been a writer for over 30 years. Her work has ranged from plays performed at the world-reknown Actors Theatre of Louisville to scripts on network television. As a freelance journalist, she writes for the Sierra Club newspaper "TRACKS" and has over 60 articles on eHow.com.

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