A helmet is undoubtedly the most important mountain biking gear that is vital for your safety. Several types of mountain bike helmets are available in the market that are designed for specific types of mountain biking. For example, someone who prefers the risky form of riding, such as dirt jumping or downhill riding needs a full face mountain bike helmet that can offer serious protection. On the other hand, someone who rides on single track or cross country should wear an open face helmet meant to provide lightweight and well-ventilated protection.
Most of the latest mountain bike helmets are made of in-mold micro shell unlike traditional hard shell construction. This is because the in-mold micro shell allows larger air vents and facilitates construction of different shapes of the helmet. Many of these helmets also feature a soft crushable foam inner shell often reinforced with nylon.
The prices for mountain bike helmets start at $ 20 for a basic model and can range as high as $ 250 for advanced and high-end models. Basic helmets are suitable for leisure rides at medium pace while high-end helmets feature a more serious impact-resistance technology and additional padding to protect your head even during serious falls. Some of the most popular helmets are Bell helmets, Giro helmets and Met helmets. Bell helmets are among the first few helmet brands to use Carbon fiber inserts in them. Some other brands include Giro, Specialized and Fox.
Some of the key features that you should consider while buying mountain bike helmet are listed below:
• The number of air vents present in a helmet affects the rate of air flow through it. Therefore, make sure that the helmets you choose have right number of vents to offer you the cooling you need for your type of riding.
• Check for inner ring adjustment. It facilitates a better and more customized fit of the helmet for added comfort.
• Look for breathable and moisture wicking padding to soak up perspiration. Removable padding will be an added advantage in terms of cleaning and hygiene.
• Nothing can offer better comfort than a helmet that is lightweight. Of course lighter the helmet, higher will be the cost.
• Correct size of helmet is very important for a comfortable fit. Although the basic helmets are available in only one size, advanced helmets like the Bell helmets are available in three to four different sizes to offer a snug fit for every head size.
• A branded helmet whose spare parts are easily available in the market is a good buy as it ensures a longer life of the mountain bike gear.