When it comes to motorcycle helmets, one thing you do not want to experience is a loose or too-tight helmet. If the helmet is loose, you won’t get the most safety out of it. On the other hand, if it happens to be too tight, you tend to experience some discomfort that could be painful and possibly distracting.
But sometimes, you might mistakenly pick a helmet from the store that doesn’t fit you well. If such a thing happens, it becomes crucial to know how to make a motorcycle helmet fit better. That’s exactly what you’ll find below as you read the guides below. You will discover how to stretch your helmet and make it fit snugly on your head.
How Tight Should a Motorcycle Helmet Be?
Knowing how tight the motorcycle helmet should be will help you determine your next move.
A proper helmet fitting should not be extremely tight, such that it becomes a pain rather than a protection. It should fit snugly instead of causing headaches or red marks on your forehead. Neither it should be loose enough to be movable around with hand while on the head.
Some of the problems you will experience if your motorcycle helmet is too loose include,
- Involuntary movements, especially when you are not aware of or expecting them.
- Extra noises due to the wind that goes through the helmet
- It may accidentally come off, which might be risky on a ride
So, while wearing your helmet for the first time, it should hold your head snugly, but not so much to pose any form of discomfort.
When you’re getting it, know that the helmets loosen up after a few hours of use. This is because the comfort line suppresses with time. So, if you get a new helmet in which your head slides in easily, you may end up with a helmet too loose for your head circumference.
Can You Stretch Out a Motorcycle Helmet?
You can stretch out a motorcycle helmet to make it more comfortable for use. To stretch out a motorcycle helmet, these are the steps you can try to solve the situation:
1. Pain in the Forehead
Your helmet can cause pain in your forehead if your head shape does not match the helmet’s shape. In such a situation, deflate a soccer ball and insert it into the helmet. When this is done, inflate it to serve as a human head and push over the foam.
Leave it in that position for a couple of days and try it afterward. It should fit more comfortably on your head this time.
Caution: We do not advise adjusting the shell or EPS lining of the helmet, as this can alter the protective function of the helmet.
2. Discomfort around the Cheeks and Chin
The foam lining around the cheek and chin region of the helmet can also cause some discomfort to the user. Fortunately, some helmet brands come with an aftermarket foam lining alternative.
Solution: If your helmet brand is one of such brands that come with an aftermarket foam lining alternative, then you can simply substitute the foam for a more comfortable one.
However, if the helmet does not have that offer, one thing you can do is take out the foam and resize it to a preferable snugness.
Caution: The DIY procedure may weaken the overall performance of the helmet, but not to so much effect. Also, this is not a long-term remedy. This will only sustain your comfort until you get a more comfortable helmet.
This is just the much you can go about stretching out your helmet while maintaining your safety. The most important thing to note is a helmet adjusts to the shape of the head over time. You, most likely, will not get the exact fitting of a helmet on the first trial. The indicators above will tell you if you can continue with the helmet or simply replace it.
How to Make a Motorcycle Helmet Fit Better?
A motorcycle helmet is originally intended to serve as protective gear for your head, but this can change if there is a problem with proper fitting. This is because going on a ride with an ill-fitting motorcycle helmet will be completely inadequate to provide the protection your head needs.
On most occasions, a motorcycle helmet may be too tight for the user. Unfortunately, there are countless drawbacks to wearing a helmet, either too tight or too loose. These disadvantages range from being distracted to experiencing severe migraine, even on a ride.
However, there are certain things to consider for a better fitting of your motorcycle helmet. Check them below.
1. The Helmet Size
Start by using a soft tape to measure the top of your head horizontally. Doing this will present you with ideas on which helmet size to get. Moreover, with the measurement result, you can compare it with what the manufacturers have on their size chart.
Motorcycle helmets usually come in various prices thus reflecting on the accuracy of the given size. For a motorcycle helmet under 300 bucks, the padding on the inner layer should be good enough, and accurate as well. All you have to do is, pick the right size from different shell sizes.
You’ll usually have 2-3 sizes to choose from. However, the more expensive ones usually come with 4 or 5 different shell sizes, and more shell sizes mean more custom fit.
2. Cheek Pads
One quick way to tell whether or not your helmet fits appropriately comes from the feeling you get from the cheek pads. You can ask yourself this, do they align with your cheekbone, or do they compress it and make you feel uncomfortable?
Another easy way to know a properly fitted helmet is the difficulty in chewing gum. A properly fitted helmet will not give you that chewing allowance, as your cheek are pushed up nicely and firmly.
3. The Position of the Helmet
The correct position is when your helmet properly sits a bit lower than the forehead or just a finger-width distance from the eyebrows. Also, there must be a firm and nice push-up on the cheeks. In this position, you should also have a clear view through the helmet’s visor. Meaning, there should not be any restriction to your view from the top or side.
When placed on your head, you must not notice any gap in the contact between the helmet and face; forehead and checks to be precise. Therefore, the helmet should comfortably hold your head throughout a journey.
4. Chin Strap Modifications
Whether the chin strap on the helmet are D-rings or ratchet straps, they must support modifications. This means you should be able to adjust the straps to your proper fit, and not more than one or two fingers should go through the space between your throat and the strap.
5. Swappable Padding
Some manufacturers make things easy by providing custom-fit helmets that support swapping the padding around the cheek region and headlining. This is quite beneficial for riders whose head sizes fall in-between helmet sizes, especially those with different shell sizes.
Such manufacturers observed that some helmets might be too loose in cases like this, while others might be too tight. So to make this easier and more convenient, they made the cheek pad and headlining a few more mm thinner or thicker from the next or preceding size. This has accomplished a proper fitting for many riders.
Most manufacturers do not recommend a DIY procedure for adding or removing padding. If the helmet’s cheek pads are extremely tight, it is advisable to return the helmet or get another.
If the cheek pads of your helmet are weak, while the helmet still appears new, you can consider getting a fresh set of cheek pads from the manufacturer. You must not go on a ride with a loose helmet, or things might turn out wrong!
6. Stretch Out the Helmet
It is not a safe act to stretch your helmet. The safest method of stretching out a motorcycle helmet is through constant wearing. By regular wearing, the helmet’s inner lining condenses, resulting in a more convenient fitting.
If you believe your helmet requires stretching, you will have to get a size more comfortable to your head. By stretching the helmet, you can impair the reliability and the outer and inner shell, which affects its performance in a mishap.
The main idea behind a motorcycle helmet is to protect the head, which is the most sensitive part of the body. This is why it is good to know how to make a motorcycle helmet fit better.
But if you’re considering a measure that can alter the complete safety of the helmet, it is, therefore, better to get a new helmet that offers better comfort. If Follow the tips above only if you’ve got a helmet that doesn’t fit you just slightly.