As advocates of motorcycle safety, the Riverside motorcycle accident lawyers at Steinberg are firm believers that helmets can be the key to saving a life in the event of an accident.

But finding the right-sized motorcycle helmet is more involved than just picking out a cool color or design. While we know that you want something that will complement the bike you are riding, it's important to buy a helmet that fits well, so that it can do its job if you are ever involved in a Southern California motorcycle injury accident.

This is why we want to provide readers with some tips on how to choose a helmet that will fit correctly.

The best way to start is to figure out your hat size. If you don't know what it is, check out the guide below. Measure the circumference of your head at its largest point, which is usually slightly above the eyebrows and all the way around the back.

Inches      cm        Hat Size
21 1/4       54        6 3/4
21 5/8       54.9     6 7/8
22             55.9     7
22 3/8       56.8     7 1/8
22 3/4       57.8     7 1/4
23 1/8       58.7     7 3/8
23 7/8       60.6     7 5/8
24 1/4       61.6     7 3/4
23 3/4       62.9     7 5/8

You can then check with the helmet manufacturer to see how these hat sizes correspond with their sizes, which are usually labeled S, M, L, XL, etc. If you are in between sizes, you will most likely have to get the larger size.

After determining the size of helmet that you need, make sure to do these additional fit checks to ensure the perfect fit for comfort and safety. Note that the helmet should be secured with the chin strap for these checks, and the helmet should be snug, but not to the point of causing discomfort.

  1. Shaking your head side to side: When this is done, the helmet should not move independently around the face. Your skin should move with the helmet, as the liner and cheek pads should be in direct contact with your skin. 
  2. The pinky test: With one hand on the back of the helmet pushing it forward, you should not be able to slip your pinky in between your forehead and the helmet. If you can do this, the helmet is too large. 
  3. Helmet lift: You should not be able to lift the helmet off of your head by pushing up in the front or pushing up in the back when the chin strap is secure. If you can do either, the helmet is too big. 
  4. Face shields and chin pieces: For full-face helmets, your nose or chin should not touch the front of the helmet. If it does, choose a different one, since the wind in your face during a ride will push the helmet closer to your face and harder against you. 
  5. Comfort: The helmet should not produce any red spots or pressure points on your face or chin, even in a new helmet, which will feel snug at first. A new helmet should be as snug as you can comfortably stand it to be.

Have you or a loved one been injured in a Southern California motorcycle accident? Contact the lawyers at Steinberg at 800.989.6385 immediately for your free copy of Seven Biggest Mistakes That Can Ruin Your California Injury Case. You also can fill out this online form to schedule a complimentary case evaluation.
Peter Steinberg
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Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney Since 1982