Dirt bike helmets save lives. So if your child is determined to ride a dirt bike you’ll need to give as much time and consideration to which helm et they wear as you do to the bike they ride. The fact is dirt bike riding with custom motocross graphics can be a safe and exhilarating experience if you make sure they learn how to operate their dirt bike correctly and that they wear proper safety gear – starting with the helmet – at all times. That said let’s take a closer look at kids dirt bike helmets.
Kids Dirt Bike Helmets: the Top Brands
Let’s start right off with a look at 3 of the top brands of dirt bike helmets for kids before getting into more detail about what to look for and how to choose one.
- Vega – Vega Helmets makes high quality protective headwear for riders of all ages. A Vega helmet like their Junior Mach 2.0 is going to set you back a bit more than some cheap dirt bike helmets for kids but what you’ll get in return is a little something called peace of mind.
- Fox Racing – Fox was established in California more than 40 years ago. Over the years they’ve grown into one of the pre-eminent manufacturers of safety gear for riders. Their Youth V3 helmet is a good example of the care and quality that goes into their competitive headwear.
- WOW – WOW makes a range of dirt bike helmets for kids that will keep them safe without breaking your bank. Helmets like their WOW Motocross Youth Spider MX Helmet are a good example of what skillful engineers can do with a limited budget.
Why Pick Those Companies?
We picked the above manufacturers because their cool dirt bike helmets score big when weighed against those things we feel you should be looking for in a kids dirt bike helmet.
Like the following:
- The Safety Rating – If you’ve decided to let your young son or daughter take up dirt biking there’s one consideration that will trump all others: safety. The US DOT publishes safety guidelines for helmets that are readily available through the web. Read ‘em and learn.
- Extended Chin Protector – Every kid’s dirt bike helmet should have a protrusion in the front that wraps around the rider’s’ chin and protects it from impacts, dust and other debris. Don’t even consider one for your youngster that doesn’t have this.
- Shell Material – Since it’s the shell that’s going to bear the brunt of any contact it needs to be tough. Yet it can’t be so heavy that it causes neck problems. Most of the best helmets today have a shell fabricated from either polycarbonate, fiberglass or carbon fiber.
- Size – As with any kind of headgear you’ll need to make sure you get the right size. If you’re not sure what your child’s head size is take a tape measure and measure around the widest part of their head.
Don’t Forget These:
- Designated Head Shape – Competent helmet manufacturers produce different helmets to accommodate different head shapes. Everything from the “Round Oval” to the “Long Oval”. Keep this in mind when selecting a helmet for your kid.
- The Liner – EPS or Expanded PolyStyrene is the liner material of choice in most high quality dirt bike helmets for kids. Don’t worry though. The EPS used in helmets is several orders of magnitude better than that used to make your cooler.
- Special Venting – It’s really important that a dirt bike helmet be well ventilated. Helmets get really hot even on relatively cool days and if you don’t vent that heat you’re in for a long uncomfortable experience.
As you can see there’s more that goes into selecting a dirt bike helmet than “eenie, meenie, minie, mo”.
Won’t Any Expensive Helmet Fit the Bill?
We hear that question a lot and it’s a pretty reasonable question. After all, if you’re paying $500 for a helmet you have every right to expect that it’s the safest one out there. But high price doesn’t always equal increased safety. Here’s why:
Extra! Extra! Extra!
Assuming that really expensive helmets (say, $500) are going to be many times safer than cheap kids dirt bike helmets (those around say, $100) is not really a safe assumption. That’s because once you get to a certain price point the fundamental safety level of most helmets tends to max out.
That little fact then begs the question “So why is one helmet $500 and the other $100?” The disparity can almost always be attributed to “extras”. Those options that are nice to have but don’t add anything significant by way of safety over cheap youth dirt bike helmets.
- Removable Lining – Some expensive helmets let you remove the lining so you can wash it when it gets skanky. That’s a nice feature but one that doesn’t increase the safety of the helmet.
- Enhanced Ventilation – We mentioned this as something you’ll want to look for in a helmet but it’s also a feature that will jack up the price. It also doesn’t make the helmet any safer.
- Exotic Materials – In order to make their helmets both strong and light some manufacturers will use carbon fiber. But while you’ll pay a handsome premium for the lightness the helmet itself won’t necessarily be any safer than a $100 polycarbonate helmet.
- More Aerodynamic Profile – Some more expensive helmets eliminate the problem of drag by embracing more aerodynamic designs. But that design process is not cheap and the costs will be passed directly on to you.
The Bottom Line?
Don’t be fooled into thinking a really expensive helmet is necessarily any safer.
Whether you’re looking for a girls or boys dirt bike helmet safety is your paramount concern. It’s important that you give the matter plenty of thought before plunking down your hard earned. The above tips and information on kids dirt bike helmets should help ensure that the dirt bike helmet you buy is one that stand its ground when it’s called on.