Pete's Cycle/Bike Helmet Review
This is the first of my monthly reviews on all things cycling. I hope to cut out the mumbo jumbo and say it how it is. By doing so, help you to find the right piece of equipment, at the right price. Or just help with understanding how or why something works.
I chose to look into cycle helmets after a recent accident between myself and another member of BSB (yes my fault). Both of us avoided serious head injuries due to our helmets. The choice is of course yours, to wear or not to wear. Has anyone ever been hurt because they wore one?
I posed these questions and more to Michael Grimshaw from
Q: Is there a standard a helmet must come up to?
A: The standard in the UK is EN1078
Q: How much should I pay?
A: The cost will depend on type size and design.
Q: What type do I need?
A: Once you know what type of cycling you wish to take up (off road, Road, Racing or commuting) then the type will be obvious.
Q: Is the design important?
A: Design is important when it comes to the fitting, comfort and looks.
Q: Must I wear one?
A: Bicycle helmets are not mandatory for cyclists of any age anywhere in the British Isles.
Q: What’s the difference between the cheap and more expensive ones?
A: It’s all down to how it is put together and quality of finish (remember they must all come up to the minimum standard EN1078)
Safety is the key when it comes to helmets. Tests assess how much protection a helmet will offer in an accident where you hit your head on the road or kerb. Shock absorption tests are carried out so you can be safe in the knowledge that you and your family are well protected. Finding a helmet to EN1078 standard is easy; all UK bike shops carry them. Helmets tested to higher standards can be found, but are more specialised, harder to source and in many cases far more expensive.
Some manufactures are now advertising MIPS (Multi-directional Impact Protection System) and is indicated by a Circular yellow sign
This means the helmet construction spreads the impact no matter what direction it is struck from.
A helmet must fit snuggly all around the head if it's to offer the best protection. The strength of the fastening and how well the helmet stays put on your head to make sure you're receiving the maximum protection. Comfort is also important - you're far more likely to wear a helmet if it's comfortable and is well ventilated.
Bike helmets are also widely available online. But I recommend trying a helmet on in a shop or showroom before buying online, because how the helmet fits on your head is an essential part of bike helmet protection.
Prices depend on the model and style, but expect to pay from around £30 up to £100 for an adult bike helmet and from £10 to £50 for a children’s helmet.
Bike helmets are available in a range of different types that are geared at different types of cyclists, for example road racers or commuters. All helmets, regardless of type, are subject to the same European Standard (EN1078) and will have been tested against this before being put on sale.
Consider how and when you are going to use your helmet to help you choose the one that is right for you.
Ok the big question is which helmet would I recommend? Well it is the one that fits me the best, I like and is affordable. It really is that simple.
So there you go, now your armed with the information go try some on. More money doesn’t always mean more protection.
Photo is a small selection of helmets available at On Yer Bike Blackburn.