Choosing the best helmet for you and your kids
Check that the helmet is approved for use
The most important thing to check when buying a helmet is that it’s safe and approved for use in Australia. Usually, you can confirm this by examining the inside of the helmet for a label that states it is certified to meet Australian Standards. If you’re shopping for your helmet online, buy it from a reputable retailer that states on their website if the helmet meets or exceeds the national standards.
Bike helmets can be used not only as bicycle helmets, but as scooter helmets, skate helmets, and as helmets for roller skating and rollerblading. Whatever helmet you choose to wear, just ensure it’s certified to Australian standards.
Ensure that the helmet fits correctly
Try the helmet on to check for fit. It should be snug but not uncomfortable and sit so that you can fit just two-fingers between the helmet and your brow line. The straps should be flush against your head and the helmet should not be able to be pulled forward on your head once adjusted correctly.
Helmets can come in basic sizes (such as small, medium and large) as well as one size fits all. In-mold helmets tend to be more expensive as the shock-absorbing foam and plastic shell are created as one, fused-together product which tend to be more durable. Both in-mold and other helmets, such as hardshell, can meet the Australian Standards, however.
How to get your child to wear a helmet
One of the best ways to get your child wearing their helmet is to lead by example and make sure you always wear one too. Explain to them why helmets are important and make wearing their helmet an enjoyable experience to help cement this habit early. It may be helpful to have your child help select their helmet or choose a helmet in a colour or pattern they’ll like.
For adults, choosing a helmet in a bright colour with (or adding) reflective strips helps improve safety.
Caring and replacing your helmet
Keep your helmet in a clean, dry area of your home ideally close to wear you keep your bike (to minimise the chance of forgetting it). Avoid dropping or banging your helmet as this can reduce its ability to weather an impact should you have a crash.
If you do crash and your helmet hits the ground, you should replace it immediately even if the helmet shows no signs of damage.