By Sonal Parmar

Whether you’re searching for a new catcher’s mitt or a new pair of shoes, finding the perfect fit is important. So why should a bike helmet be any different?

Wearing a helmet while biking reduces the risk of head injury by 85 percent, the risk of brain injury by 88 percent, and the risk of injury to the upper or mid-face by 65 percent.

bike helmet fittingFollow the easy steps in our proper fit guide and these DOs & DON’Ts the next time you put on your helmet for a bike ride:

  • DO wear a helmet every time you bike. Helmets save lives!
  • DO choose a helmet that covers the forehead and back of the head evenly.
  • DO adjust side straps so they form a “V” below the ear.
  • DO adjust the chin strap so that no more than one or two fingers fit under the strap.
  • DON’T unbuckle the chin straps while biking. In order for a helmet to work, it has to stay on your head even if you fall upside down.
  • DON’T reuse helmets after a crash. Even if the helmet looks undamaged, it may not be able to withstand the force of another crash.
  • DON’T wear your helmet backwards. It’s uncomfortable and it may not protect you fully.

Now that you know how to perfectly fit a helmet, get one for the perfect price. The city provides helmets for $5.00 at Boston Medical Center’s gift shop in Menino Lobby. Please visit our website or contact InjuryPrevention@bphc.org or 617-534-5197 for more information on injury prevention and bike safety.

Sonal Parmar is a program coordinator for the Injury Prevention Program at the Boston Public Health Commission. Recently she blogged about keeping kids safe at home.

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