Head and shoulders, knees and toes – yes, ski wear and ski equipment comprise many pieces covering our whole body. It is essential in skiing to protect you from wind, weather, and accidents to make the sport super fun and safe at the same time. One of the most significant parts to be protected is our head. Skiers unfortunately had to learn this lesson the hard way. For a long time, most people on the pistes wore caps or headbands instead of ski helmets. Many accidents later and a few years of settling in down the road the ski helmet is a highly sophisticated piece of ski equipment. In this article, we will give you 5 technical information about ski helmets and show you why it is way better than any cap and cooler than you would expect.
Protection on a high-tech level: MIPS
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Let's talk about the core reason to wear a helmet: we need to protect our biggest asset – our brains. Skiing is a relatively safe sport if we behave ourselves on-piste and be careful, but even the best skiers sometimes fall, and hitting the head on ice or snow is not really fun (surprise). No wonder researchers put in enormous effort to find the most comfortable yet effective solution to protect the brain from any harm. One of the breakthroughs in this field was MIPS – short for Multi-directional Impact Protection System. This technology improved various helmet brands and increases the effect of a ski helmet enormously.
Researchers found out that one of the most dangerous things that injure our brain is rotational impact instead of linear. What does that mean you ask? Well, let's say you get hit on the head by someone, this is linear impact. But if you fall and the impact comes from an angle which makes your head roll, consequences might be fatally worse. And statistics show us that it's common to fall at an angle, especially on steep pistes. Due to this discovery, MIPS is a layer inside your ski helmet that allows relative motion of 10-15 mm into all directions. Therefore, it transforms rotational forces into linear ones and protects your brain more than regular helmets do.
Cooler than a cap: Super ventilated ski helmets
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What ski beginners oftentimes do not expect before trying on a ski helmet is, how incredibly warm they keep your head. This is very important because the helmet replaces the cap which was intended to keep our ears and heads warm.
Then again, we sometimes sweat when on the piste, and especially on warmer spring days we do not want to be stuck in a sweaty helmet and let our scalp breathe. Consequently, ski brands producing ski helmets developed various systems to increase airflow when needed. Most of the time you will find a slider on your ski helmet with which you can manually open vents. But there are also technologies incorporated that let warm air out automatically. And the possible types of vents are almost endless. Most of the time they are equipped with some sort of membrane that makes sure only air comes in and water or snow stays outside the ski helmet.
Let's see: Full-face helmets/visors and goggle security
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Ski helmets have a best friend, and they are called ski goggles. Ski goggles are just as important in ski equipment as ski helmets are because no one wants to experience sunburn on the eyes. Literally no one. Plus, we need to wear them on the head just like the helmet. Therefore, all helmets have some sort of strap or clip on their back with which you can fix your ski goggles on the ski helmet so that they almost become an entity.
Some ski helmet producers even went further than the strap and incorporated the ski goggles to the helmet. These kinds of helmets are called full-face helmets or visors. Reminding of SIFI-movies you can slide the ski goggles element up and down the front of your ski helmet. There will not be a need to buy ski goggles separately in that case. They seem more like a protective shield than goggles in that case. But they look super cool and some people swear that they are more comfortable to ski with. Especially wearers of glasses prefer them because visors do not have a frame and the view can be much larger.
Embed your head: Fit adjuster and chinstrap
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Just as all helmets should do, ski helmets fit perfectly. They always do when chosen right, because they are not only offered in various sizes but because they are equipped with a chinstrap and a fit adjuster at the back.
The chinstrap we also know from other sorts of helmets is a must-have. They make sure that the helmet stays in place, and they are usually easy to open and close with cleverly designed buckles. Furthermore, they are quite comfortable on your chin, because they have a cover of fleece and hold your neck warmer in place on cold days.
All we want is to feel comfortable and secure in a helmet and a fit adjuster is like the key to that door. No matter how your head looks like and whether you want to wear a cap underneath your ski helmet like the youngster free skiers do, the ski helmet will always fit perfectly. There are many various kinds of adjusters on the market that let you loosen or tighten the system inside the ski helmet. There are even some adjusters that make it possible to adjust the ski helmet vertically, to perfectly harmonize with your neck and ski goggles on your forehead.
Party on the piste: Headphones
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Yes, also ski helmets can be equipped with gadgets and one of the most popular ones is the compatibility with your mobile phone. Some ski helmets have ear pads that work like earphones when connected, bringing the party to the piste. Others even have a Bluetooth function so that you can listen to music wireless. Even though this is a cool gadget, you should never forget to get lost in the music on-piste. We still need to be aware of our surroundings and care for others on the piste – so please do not get too distracted.
5 technical information about ski helmets: To sum up
Hopefully, you are more excited now about wearing a ski helmet than you were before. We are well aware of many skeptical ski beginners who doubt the comfort and safety of such helmets. But in fact, most people love theirs the first time they go skiing wearing them. Ski helmets are comfortable because they warm your head but also have cooling ventilation options. Furthermore, they fit way better than other helmets we know, because they are extraordinarily adjustable. They complement your ski goggles the perfect way because they secure them way better than a cap ever could. And if you are a fan of gadgets and love music they can be your headphones as well.
Anyhow, most importantly they protect your biggest asset: your head, face, and brain. That is something we certainly should prioritize and never underestimate as skiers.
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