Children’s helmets test & 2020 comparison
A helmet is always part of the safety equipment when handling the wheel or bicycle. After all, the coordination of the little cyclists is not yet fully developed and the next fall is soon to come. What is happening? The head is almost unprotected and injuries can be very severe without a helmet. Parents should therefore get their children used to the bicycle helmet early on and, of course, best set a good example. But how exactly can you recognize a good bike helmet, how is it constructed and which criteria do you have to consider when buying? We want to take a closer look at all of these questions in the following sections.
This is how a bicycle helmet for children works – hard shell, soft core
A modern children’s helmet is equipped with a hard outer shell and a padded interior. There are basically three types of construction:
Hard shell helmet Micro shell helmet Softshell helmet
The safest models belong to the micro shell helmets, which convince with many openings for ventilation and a low weight. The shell is mostly made of plastic and only of the expensive models made of carbon. The advantage of carbon is the lightweight construction, which plays a role more in bike racing than in children’s helmets. The plastic is not so important due to the many openings and ventilation slots. Directly under the outer shell there is an identical shell made of rigid foam, which is welded firmly to the upper part. It must be at least 2 cm thick and line the entire helmet. The hard foam absorbs shocks optimally and offers insulation in cold or very hot temperatures. Underneath is the inner pad that creates the connection to the head and provides a comfortable fit. After all, the helmet must not press or fit against the head. Ventilation holes ensure that the children do not sweat too much when wearing them. They are usually additionally lined with a fabric net.
In the back of the head there is an adjustment mechanism so that the helmet can be loosely put on and then tightened. You move an inner construction made of flexible plastic using a small wheel, the the Head shape tightly encloses. Therefore, not every helmet fits every head and your child should be able to try out different models. Comfort is paramount if your child is to voluntarily put on the helmet later. The chin strap is the last component and serves as a clasp. It is usually additionally padded so that the closure leaves no pressure points on the chin. It is a plug lock that does not open easily during everyday driving or in the event of a fall.
How does the helmet catch a fall? – Pressure wave is released
Wearing a helmet alone is said to reduce the risk of head injuries by 30 percent. If there is an impact, the helmet is the protective element, which distributes the energy much better. The material compresses, dissipates the energy by means of a pressure wave and conducts it away from the head via the outer shell – like a kind of lightning rod. If the helmet breaks, the force is optimally absorbed and your child remains unharmed on the head. So it is not a material defect or a defect, because a broken helmet shows its ability to absorb energy.
Choose the right size – from XS to M
The right size is crucial for every child’s helmet, as the little ones are still growing. Optimal protection is only required if the helmet is firmly and properly attached to the child’s head. It must not be easy to pull forward or push it back. A game to the side is also not recommended. Some helmets grow with their interior settings. This means that they can be used significantly longer and adapted to different head shapes.
But how do you get the right helmet size? Simply measure the head circumference and compare it with the table. To do this, take a measuring tape and put it on over your ears to the middle of your forehead. However, the tape measure must not fall on the neck, but must always be against the head. It is best to measure several times to be sure. If the head circumference is between two helmet sizes, always choose the larger variant. After all, your child will grow quickly and the helmet must not push or cut under any circumstances. The following sizes are available from most manufacturers:
|helmet size||head circumference||Age|
|XS||44 cm – 49 cm||0 – 3 years|
|S||46 cm – 51 cm||2 – 7 years|
|S / M||49 cm – 53 cm||3 – 9 years|
|M||52 cm – 58 cm||From around 4 years old|
Even larger helmets are available in L and XL from a head circumference of 60 cm. However, these are more intended for older children over 12 years and adolescents. If you don’t have a tape measure, just take a longer cord and then measure the circumference on a ruler or a ruler. But be careful: the sizes vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. It is best to always compare the size with the measured head circumference and check whether it is in the frame. The larger the circumference, the bigger the helmet you choose, of course.
Not only suitable for bicycles – also for inliners and scooters
A bicycle helmet for children is of course not only intended for the first attempts with your own bike. It is best to start getting your child used to the helmet in good time. The little ones take part in road traffic with a running bike or scooter and should be properly protected. After all, a fall or impact doesn’t always have to be your own fault. Later, of course, the helmet is also used for skateboarding, inline skating or karting, depending on the children’s preferences.
Colorful colors and beautiful designs – let your child choose
After the shape and size have been determined, it is time to choose the right design. Whether it’s a pink girl’s dream, zoo animals or cartoon characters – there are really no limits to what children want. However, an important rule: let your child make the choice himself. After all, wearing a helmet should be fun and should not start with an aversion to color or design. If you like the helmet externally, you will wear it later and never forget it.
The advantages and disadvantages of a bicycle helmet for your child
The main manufacturers – Uvex, Alpina and Co.
Of course, there is not only a large selection of models and designs. In the following table we want to give you a brief overview of the most important manufacturers for children’s helmets and their special features. This may make your selection a little easier.
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