Riding a horse can be unpredictable. The horse may become spooked, irritated, or may just be having a bad day and serious consequences can result. Each year over 70,000 riders are taken to the Emergency Room for equestrian related injuries. Of those hospital visits, about 12,000 are diagnosed as head injuries. To minimize the risk of serious injury, be sure your helmet is the proper fit. It is also a good idea to check your helmet yearly for signs of wear. Below are some helpful hints on how to get the perfect fit, and when to replace your helmet.
Making Sure Your Helmet Fits
Equestrian Helmets come in all shapes, sizes, styles, and patterns. Your helmet should be certified for horseback riding, meet your needs and riding style, and have a proper fit. When searching for helmets, start by measuring your head an inch above your eyebrows and above your ears. As you are being fitted for your helmet, wear your hair the way you commonly wear it during riding activities. Your helmet visor should be one inch from your eyebrow, and the helmet should sit level on your head, covering your forehead. The chin strap should be snug, and when you move your head the helmet should mirror the movement; not wobble. A proper fitting helmet becomes less noticeable after a short period of wear. If you are experiencing a headache, your helmet may be too tight.
When is it Time to Replace Your Helmet?
As a general rule of thumb, you should replace your helmet every five to six years. Helmets should be replaced sooner if you see any visible signs of wear and tear. Signs of wear and tear commonly occur on the inside foam. If you see any cracks in the foam, it is usually time to replace it. Sometimes when your helmet is exposed to extreme weather conditions or outdoor elements you will need to replace it. Helmets are important when riding, and haven proven to save lives. Be sure your helmet is in perfect condition and working order.
To promote helmet awareness, Rod’s will be offering 20% off all helmets until Sunday, June 10th.