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Types of Helmets

Pragya T Aug 29, 2020
The type of helmet to be bought depends upon its purpose. Here are various types of helmets used for various sports and work-related purposes.
A helmet is basically a protective headgear. An injury to the head can be life-threatening, hence it is recommended to wear a helmet during any activity that requires protection to the head. Many states have laws which make it necessary for anybody riding a bike to wear a helmet. Today, there are many types of helmets.

Different Types of Helmets

Bicycle Helmets

There are many types of bicycle helmets and many of these types come with a rear blinker, detachable visor, winter ear flaps, mirrors, etc.

Sports or Commuter Helmet: Commuter helmets are less elongated. They have air vents on the top. Inside, they have a covering of foam and on the outside part, there lies a covering of thin plastic.
Mountain Bike Helmet: These helmets are similar to commuter helmets, except that they have a visor added to the design and are slightly elongated.

Downhill Mountain Bike Helmet: These are lightweight helmets, which are similar to motorcycle helmets. These helmets come with a chin bar and are made of plastic, fiberglass or carbon fiber.
BMX Helmet: These can be lightweight or full-weight helmets, which are similar in design to motorcycle helmets. They have a chin bar, and a large squared-off visor.

Chrono Helmet: These are special helmets which are high in aerodynamic efficiency. They are used during racing events.
Children's Helmet: Children's helmet comes between the ages of 5 to 10 years. These helmets often come in bright colors. Children's helmets look similar to sports or commuter helmets. However, sometimes you can find them in a skull-cap design too.
Women's Helmet: Earlier, bicycle helmets used to come with space for long hair, because men used to wear their hair long too. However, now men's and women's helmets are almost the same, except with some graphic differences on the helmet.
One-Size-Fits-All Helmets: These helmets can be adjusted using a ring to make a snug fit to any head size. These helmets are a good option for children and people who can't find the right size of helmet.

Motorcycle Helmets

Motorcycle helmets come in various sizes and designs. They come in plain colors or with stunning graphics.

Skull-cap/Dome Helmet: Skull-caps are popular among cruiser riders. They are common among states where it is necessary to wear a helmet when riding a motorbike. These provide minimum protection as they cover only the top of the head.
Open-face/Half Helmet: These helmets cover the top side and back of the head and come with a visor. These can be seen on cruiser riders and police officers.

3-quarter Shell Helmet: These helmets cover the sides, back and top of the head along with ears and cheeks. They also have a snap-on visor which protects the eyes and face against bugs and sunlight glare.
Full Face Helmet: These helmets are commonly used because they provide good protection. They cover the entire head and come with a transparent or tinted visor.

Flip-up Modular Helmet: These are a hybrid between full face and open face helmet. They have a chin bar, which can be flipped up so that the helmet works as an open face helmet.
Motocross/Off-road Helmet: These helmets are designed to have an elongated chin and visor. This provides extra protection to the rider. With these helmets, a face mask and goggles are usually worn, as these helmets are mostly used during dirt bike racing.

Sports Helmets

Keeping in mind the type of sport, the design of the helmet changes, which helps to protect the wearer's head and face.

American Football Helmet: This type of helmet is used while playing American/Canadian football. It has a hard plastic top and thick padding inside. It comes with a face mask made with plastic bars.
Equestrian/Horse Riding Helmet: These are worn by horse riders. These helmets are lightweight and cover the top of the head and come with a visor style brim.

Hockey Helmet: These helmets can be seen worn during ice hockey or inline hockey. They cover the top, back and sides of the head. They come with a transparent shield to protect the face from any hits.
Sun/Pith Helmet: These helmets are worn during a safari. These are lightweight helmets which are covered with cloth. They are mostly made of cork or pith. They come with a large brim to protect against the harsh sun.

Batting Helmet: These helmets can be seen to be worn by batters either in softball or baseball. They cover the top, back and sides of the head.
Cricket Helmet: Cricket helmets are used by batsmen. They help to cover the whole skull and have a grill which helps to cover and protect the face.
Ski Helmet: These are lightweight helmets used for skiing, which are made of carbon fiber, and have a soft padding on the inside part. They can come with or without a visor. These helmets protect the top, sides and back of the head.
Lacrosse Helmet: Lacrosse is a team sport in which a lacrosse is used to catch a ball. For this game, a special helmet is worn. This helmet is made from hard plastic. It has a visor and face mask made out of plastic bars. This helmet protects the top, sides and back of the head.
Roller Skating Helmet: These are similar to bicycle helmets. These helmets cover the top of the head and have vents which keep the head cool.

Scuba-diving Helmet: These are worn by professional divers. These helmets seal the complete head from water. This helps the diver to see clearly. These helmets also provide breathing gas to divers.
Skateboarding Helmet: This helmet is similar to skull-cap helmet. They cover the top of the head and have few vents to keep the head cool.

Snowboarding Helmet: These are similar to skateboarding helmets. They look like skull-cap helmets, as they protect the back, sides and top of the head. Most of the time, these helmets are worn with goggles.
Kayaking/Whitewater Helmet: These helmets protect the head during many water sports. These helmets come in various designs; they come in full face or skull-cap motorcycle helmet styles.
Sparring Helmet: These helmets are made out of soft leather and foam. They help to protect the complete head. Also, they come with a solid welded grill to protect the wearer's face.

Work Helmets

Many jobs require a person to wear a protective headgear. However, some jobs require a person to wear a helmet as a part of their uniform.
Miner's Helmet: These helmets come in bright colors like red or yellow. These helmets are made out of hard plastic and many times come equipped with a light. These helmets protect the top of the head and come fitted with a visor brim.
Space Helmet: These are special helmets which are pressurized to contain breathing gas. They are worn in space by astronauts along with a space suit.

Welding Helmet: This is a protective headgear which protects the neck and face of the welder. These helmets prevent the arc eye condition. These helmets come with a tinted glass which allows the welder to see.
Firefighter's Helmet: These helmets protect the head from fires and hits. They are made of thermoplastic or a composite material. They have a brim at the back and cover the top of the head.
Hard Hat: Hard hats are mostly worn at construction sites. These helmets are lightweight, and protect the user against falls, bad weather and electric shock. They cover the top of the head and have a brim in the front.
Lifeboatman's Helmet: These helmets worn by lifeboatmen are similar to motorcycle helmets. They protect the top, sides and back of the head and come with a transparent visor.
British Police Officer Helmet: Custodian helmets are worn by British police officers in England and Wales. It's a traditional headgear which is black in color and sits at the top of the head. It has a brim which is pointed in the front.
Riot Protection Helmet: These headgear protect the sides, top and back of the head. They have a small brim in the front and come with a large transparent visor to protect the face. They are used generally by people in the military.

Ancient and Mythical Helmets

In ancient Rome and Greek various types of helmets were used.

Hawaiian Feather Helmets/Mahiole: This is not exactly a protective headgear but was a symbol of the highest rank reserved for men who belonged to the chiefly class in Hawaii. These helmets were woven pieces, which were decorated using red feathers.
Winged Helmet: Hermes, the Greek God, used to wear a winged helmet along with winged sandals. Hermes is also known as 'Mercury' in Roman mythology.

Tarnhelm: This helmet is a mythical helmet, which seems to make the wearer invisible. It is also said to grant long distance travel instantly.
Cassis/Galea Helmet: These helmets were worn with the Roman armor. They were beaten out using a single sheet of iron or brass. Later on, crossbars were added to these helmets.
Spartan Helmets: These were used by Spartan warriors and were made using a sheet of metal. They covered the top, sides and back of the head along with the cheeks and forehead. Generals wore a variation of these helmets, which had a feather plume.
In case you are buying a helmet for riding, sports or work, make sure it fits you snugly and offers you maximum protection. Also, remember to replace your helmet in case it is damaged or worn out.