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Bike helmets: Find the right fit

Photo: Spotmatik/iStockphoto

It’s common knowledge that when bike riding, skateboarding or rollerblading, you should wear a helmet for safety. But do you know how to properly fit a helmet?

Follow these six steps from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration:

  1. Measure your head to find the correct size. Try on a variety of helmets in your size. Place the helmet on your head and adjust the sizing pads or fit ring until the helmet is snug.
  2. Ensure the helmet sits level on your head and low on your forehead, about one to two finger-widths above your brow.
  3. Check that the slider on the straps form a “V” shape under – and slightly in front of – the ears. Does the slider have a lock? If so, use it.
  4. Center the left buckle under your chin.
  5. Buckle the chin strap, and tighten the strap until it’s snug.
  6. Perform a final fitting. If you open your mouth wide, the helmet should pull down on your head. If it doesn’t, tighten the chin strap more. Does your helmet rock back above the eyebrows? If so, shorten the front strap and retighten the chin strap. Does your helmet rock forward? Tighten the back strap by moving the slider toward the ear.

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