More children ages 5-14 go to emergency rooms for bicycle-related injuries than with any other sport, and many of these are head injuries. Whether or not your locale requires a helmet, make sure your child wears one. A properly fitted bike helmet can save lives.
Get your child a helmet that fits now, not one to ‘grow into.’ A helmet needs to fit well to provide protection. Here are ‘fit tips’ from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration:
Get the right size helmet:
- Measure around your child’s head.
- Now try on several helmets in the correct size. Size can vary a bit between different manufacturers.
- The helmet should sit level on the head and low on the forehead—not tilting on the back of the head—one or two finger-widths above the eyebrow.
Once you’ve got the right size helmet, adjust it for the right fit:
- Adjust the side straps so they form a “V” shape under, and slightly in front of, the ears.
- Buckle the chin strap and tighten it. If the straps need to be longer or shorter, take the helmet off to pull the straps from the back of the helmet.
- The final step is…a big yawn! With the mouth wide open the helmet should pull down on the head. If it doesn’t, tighten it up.
Do the same for yourself! And be a good role model – wear a helmet for every ride.
Get more bicycle and vehicle safety tips here.