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7 Ski Tips: Helmets for Kids

Helmets save lives. Luckily, as far as kids are concerned, some of them can even be regarded as cool. Adults too should set an example and helmet-up. Here are 7 hard facts you should know.

1No helmet, no ski. This should be the #1 rule for your kids. Skiing and snowboarding are high-risk sports – just ask the insurance company – and accidents can happen even on green runs.

2Kids are more susceptible to brain injury because of their developing, softer skulls, so for your children, helmets are vital. The good news is ski schools in Australia won’t let your child ski without a hard hat. Adults should take note and follow suit.

3Fit is the #1 priority when hiring or buying a helmet. Helmets should be snug and firmly fitted, but not so tight they are uncomfortable. Before you shop measure your child’s size by wrapping a tape measure around their head just above their ears. Armed with this number you can then try on for comfort. Make sure goggles fit properly around a helmet, so take them along or buy a pair at the same time.

4If you want your child to actually wear the helmet you buy, style counts too. As any teen snowboarder will tell you, what is cool in helmets changes every year, so try and choose something that won’t be out of fashion by next season. Luckily helmets come in a great variety of colours and designs. Giro, Protec, Red and Smith all have good ranges of kids’ and teen headgear.

5Ask what activities are available. Wear it right. The helmet should be positioned low enough in the front to protect the forehead with no gap between hat and goggles, but not so low as to push the goggles onto the nose or restrict vision. Look for an adjustable dial at the back to alter the tightness.

6The shake test. Get your child to nod their head to make sure the helmet doesn’t wiggle, then tilt the helmet forward and back and side to side – the skin and the forehead should move without the helmet moving.

7If the helmet is involved in a serious crash it should always be replaced, even if it appears undamaged. Wear and tear, being banged around or dropped on the ground after a hard day’s skiing can also make helmets less effective because foam lining acts like a car airbag and shouldn’t be compressed

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