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How to choose a helmet for kids
Every year, you hear about bike-related head injuries and deaths involving kids. Otasuke, a Japanese support group claims that more than 60% of traﬃc accidents involving children are high school students while some 24% are elementary graders. Children become vulnerable to traﬃc accidents because they are short so speeding cars are less likely to notice them. They also zoom the streets without looking.
Thanks to the invention of helmets for cyclists, the risk of brain injury from an accident is reduced by as much as 80%.
Helmets must be able to absorb safety impact tests including dropping a heavy helmet onto an anvil. A bicycle helmet is designed to withstand only one strong blow so if your child has a bad fall on his head, replace his helmet even if it does not look damaged on the outside. Don’t buy a helmet at a sayonara or a yard sale for this reason. You do not know if it has been in an accident.
What to look for in a helmet for safety
1. The helmet must sit straight on your child’s head, with the front edge or or
two-ﬁnger widths above the eyebrows. It should cover most of the forehead.
Research shows that kids wearing helmet tipped back on their head are 52%
most likely to suﬀer from a head injury than those who wear it properly.
2. Center the left side of the buckle under the chin. Adjust if it is too long or
3. Adjust slider on each of the side straps so they form a “V”, just below the
child’s ear. Lock the slider .
4. Fasten the chinstrap for a snug ﬁt. You should not be able to ﬁt more than
two ﬁngers underneath when fastened correctly. When your child opens his
mouth wide, he should be able to feel the helmet pull down on the top of his
head. If he can not, tighten the chinstrap.
5. The helmet should not be able to move more than an inch in any direction
when you tug on it. If it tends to slide backward, unbuckle it and shorten the
front strap by moving the slider forward. If it rocks forward into your child’s
eyes, tighten the back strap by moving the slider back. Don’t be afraid to try
a diﬀerent model if the one you like does not work.
Lastly, remember that
Asians by nature, have a wider head circumference than most other races so
buying from a Japanese online store is not advisable.