Helmets 101Posted by Pedigree |
For those of you with years of experience on the mountain, you’ve probably noticed a changing trend within the last fifteen years - the switch from hat to helmet. And if you are new to the sport, you may have some questions about investing in a helmet. Below are answers to the most commonly asked questions about helmets.
Do I need to wear a helmet?
Yes. It may feel funny trying it on in the store, but once you are all bundled up on the mountain, you probably won’t even notice you are wearing it. Over 90% of people on the mountain are wearing them - and for a good reason. Between dangerous weather conditions, varying conditions of snow and ice, different level of skiers and boarders coming together on one trail, chairlift shenanigans, and yes - people have even fallen over while just standing still before - anything can happen, no matter your skill level.
When should I buy a new helmet?
The average shelf life of the materials in a helmet are about 5 years, so that is how often you should replace your helmet. With that said, if your head or a child's head is growing and changing shape, you should be checking that the helmet still fits every season. If you decide to pass down a helmet between children, double check that it fits properly as well - what may have been a good fit for one child may not be a good fit for the other. You should also replace any helmet that has had a very hard impact, as that compromises the shell. Just because a helmet may look okay from the outside, does not mean it is safe on the inside. It’s best to air on the side of caution.
Renting vs. Buying
Typically, people decide they want to rent if it is their first time skiing, and they are not sure they will do it again. Other than that, it is generally more safe, clean, cost effective, and convenient to purchase.
The safety of a rental helmet can be unknown - if someone wearing the helmet before you took a hard blow to the helmet, it is not as safe as it was before the incident. And if they didn’t mention that upon returning it, it can then get passed on to you without any knowledge of the incident. The internal parts of the helmet can be compromised with little to no damage on the outer shell. A majority of helmets, if not all of them, are designed to fully protect you from a single bad hit. After that, the safety of the helmet is compromised.
A cleanliness concern when renting a helmet is lice, especially among the younger children. Weigh the cost of buying a helmet vs. renting, and then the pain and annoyance of lice before making your decision.
If you ski or ride for more than about 4 days within the many seasons a helmet should last, it is more cost effective to purchase a helmet. Kids can also use it for more than mountain sports - they can also use it ice skating, sledding, etc.
If you are renting or buying all your other equipment from Pedigree or 44 Board, than you already have everything you need before hitting the slopes - why wait in the lodge rental line just to get a helmet? Be first chair ready, and hit the slopes for those fresh morning tracks!
Don't worry, there is a helmet for everyone! To check out the many styles and colors of helmets that we offer, or for more information, come in to any of our Pedigree Ski Shop or 44 Board locations - we are here to help!