GET YOUR HELMET FIT SPOT ON: AVOID PAIN, ENSURE PROTECTION, DON'T WASTE YOUR MONEY
With 4/10 (four out of ten) motorcyclists wearing the wrong size helmet, you have a near 1-in-2 chance of being one of them. It's not only a safety issue or comfort issue - Don't waste your money on an ill-fitting helmet, which you then only have to replace shortly after.
- Learn how to measure your head
- Discover the pitfalls of sizing up your helmet
- If you signed up to our helmet fitting email sequence, you will know by now that some helmet brands fit so much better out of the box than other brands
- Find out how we can take the risk out of all this & help you
Motorcycle Helmet Sizing: Watch our Video Guide or read on after the Video
Motorcycle helmet sizing: Why it is so important to get your motorcycle helmet fit right
Comfort & Safety. Out of all the things we can tell you about buying a crash helmet, getting the fit and sizing of your helmet right is the most important thing. A helmet that's poorly fitting, where the helmet size is wrong or the internal shape of the helmet is wrong, will cause you no end of pain and will not protect you properly when it matters.
CUSTOMER REVIEW: How a helmet fitting makes every mile better
The expertise of these geared heads is amazing (..) I've always had a size L helmet in most brands but never had a scorpion and without hesitation he looked at my face and told me about my shape and brands that work. He then asked the price bracket were gonna work with and he said “you'll need a XXL but if it's too loose I can grab a XL but I'm sure you're a XXL”. I was okay I'll give it go and try, he got the helmet then asked me to wear it for a timed 10mins to see how the pressure points feel, he pulled on the helmet to check fitment also in directions. He then asked me to take it off and the examined my head for the pressure points and the helmet was on point, I asked to try a XL as I thought it felt a tad lose at first as I'm used to tighter helmet as preference. He got the XL and I tried it on and went through it all again and took it off and you could see the marked pressure points. In short journeys you don't notice it but if I wanted to do a longer ride it would be a headache and possible nausea. I was ecstatic, I then asked to try a cheaper helmet to tell the difference (keep in mind it's the same helmet but didn't have the flip down sun visor and cheaper cheek pads). The fitment was the same but you could tell after 10 mins that it wasn't the same and was going to become uncomfortable after a longer journey even though it fitted fine. It also didn't have as good sound insulation as it didn't have the chin flap. I ended up with the helmet he had first recommended from what I had asked for
- Scott, via Google
SECTION LINKS: All you need to know about helmet sizing & fitting
Motorcycle Helmets Sizing Step 1: How to measure for a helmet
Motorcycle Helmets Sizing Step 2: The helmet size chart
Motorcycle Helmets Sizing Step 3: Exercise caution
Motorcycle Helmet Fitting: What to check
Motorcycle Helmet Fitting: Where it should be snug
Motorcycle Helmet Fitting: What is too tight
Motorcycle Helmet Fitting: What is too loose
Motorcycle Helmet Sizing FAQs
Motorcycle helmet sizing: How to find your 'right' motorcycle helmet size
Before you start, narrow down what is the most likely helmet size for you by measuring your head and deciding what motorcycle helmet type will suit your riding needs best.
When initially trying on motorcycle helmets, make sure you take your time to check the fit for safety. Remember that the right helmet will 'bed in', meaning the helmet should start off fitting snug, and then get more comfortable as the padding adjusts to your head.
Motorcycle Helmets Sizing Step 1: How to measure for a motorcycle helmet
First measure head for a helmet with a tape measure. When measuring for a motorcycle helmet, take a flexible tape measure and wrap it around the widest point of your head. Usually that is just above the ears.
That gives you a centimetre measurement that corresponds to a brand's helmet size guide or chart. If that measurement shows you to be "between helmet sizes", start with the smaller size and go up a size, if the smaller size is too snug. The motorcycle helmets size charts we come to next:
Measure horizontally around the head at the widest point, usually about 2cms above the ear.
Motorcycle Helmets Sizing Step 2: Compare your unique helmet size measurement to the motorcycle helmet size chart
With a few exceptions, all motorcycle helmet manufacturers work to a similar motorcycle helmets size charts, or helmet size guide, and this is it:
|Likely Helmet Size
Not all crash helmets are available in all the sizes shown above. Normally, a motorcycle helmet style will be available at least in a size range between X-Small and X-Large. If your head is larger, we have some good news below!
If you have a larger head, there are specific helmet styles that have an extended size range up to either size 3XL or 4XL.
Motorcycle Helmet Sizing: Exceptions to the standard motorcycle helmet size guide
AGV in the past offered sizes "Small-Medium" and "Large-Medium" in some of its crash helmet styles: What it means is that there are 2 size options to choose from for heads with a circumference between 56cms and 59cms.
And Schuberth works to its own unique motorcycle helmet size chart, different by 1cm to everyone else:
|Schuberth Helmet Size
|Likely Helmet Size
Motorcycle Helmets Sizing Step 3: Exercise caution when comparing sizing between helmet brands
If you've had a brand X motorcycle helmet before and you want to buy a new helmet from brand Y, please be clear that crash helmet sizes do not translate seamlessly between helmet brands. They're similar, but they're not the same. That is not least because the motorcycle helmet fit differs between brands, even if the measured circumference is very similar.
So, if you're looking for your first helmet, make sure you refer to motorcycle helmets size charts above first to have an initial stab at the correct size. And if you're switching between brands don't assume you will be the same size in all of them.
Motorcycle Helmet Sizing: What's your head shape?
Figuring out what size to start with is a good starting point, but not the answer. That measurement doesn't talk at all about the size of your forehead, for example. And it doesn't talk at all about whether you've got more of an oval shaped head or more of a round shaped head.
Most helmets are designed for the average oval shaped head, so if that doesn't apply to your head shape, try on a range of helmet styles from different brands.
Motorcycle Helmet Fitting: What to check - Your helmet measurement is only the 1st step to a crash helmet that fits
Perform the following checks to make sure your motorcycle helmet is not just sized correctly, but it also fits correctly
Once you've set your heart on a helmet and you think you know what size you are, you can put it on and test that the helmet fits as required. If the helmet isn't immediately too tight or too loose, keep it on for ten minutes. That's because the helmet might fit and feel fine for a minute or so, but starts to feel uncomfortable after a period of riding. If it's going to give you a problem, you'll be able to try the next size up.
How a motorcycle helmet should fit: The 3 places your motorcycle helmet should be snug-fitting
In order for the helmet to be safe, it does need to fit firmly in three places. Those pressure points are your two cheeks (cheek bone or jaw bone), and the upper back of your head. A safely fitting helmet will be snug in these places so the helmet is securely seated, can protect you if you crash, and does not move while you are riding.
If your helmet is too tight or too loose in these places, you have not found the motorcycle helmet size that's right for you. If no matter which helmet size you try the helmet will just not seat securely in these 3 places, then that helmet style is inappropriate for your head shape and you're better off trying a different brand or style.
How a motorcycle helmet should fit: How tight should a motorcycle helmet be?
There is such a thing as 'too tight'. First, look in the mirror: If you look like a hamster and start to bite into the inside of your cheeks as you close your jaw, then that helmet is too tight.
For the lining of the inside of the cheek to press in between the open jaw is normal. For you to bite the lining of the inside of the cheek as you close your jaw is not normal. The lining of the inside of the cheek should escape as the teeth close up.
And equally, if you see really strong impression marks or indentations after you've worn the helmet for five minutes, it's likely that that helmet will become uncomfortable after wearing it for longer. These marks will appear across the forehead usually, but also the temples and some other parts of the head.
If the helmet doesn't give you any serious discomfort but still feels a little too tight, remember that any new helmet will 'bed in' after about 15-20 hours of riding and feel more comfortable.
How a motorcycle helmet should fit: How loose should a motorcycle helmet fit?
There is also such thing as too loose. This can be tested quite easily by taking the helmet, leaving your neck still and getting somebody else to move the helmet up and down, and left to right. If the helmet quite easily slips over the skin instead of moving the skin, then it's too loose.
Or, if the helmet cheek pads separate from your cheeks as the helmet gets turned to the left and the right, it may be the right size, but it might be the wrong shape of helmet inside. Or, it might just be the wrong size. For that you'll need a specialist opinion to get that right quickly.
How Helmet Sizing & Helmet Fit ensure your safety
Motorcycle helmets are constructed from four mains parts: The hard outer shell, the EPS liner, the chin strap and the comfort lining.
How a well-fitting helmet protects: Dispersal of impact forces
The hard outer shell is the first point of impact in a crash. Its main function is to disperse the energy across its surface by fracturing out from the point of impact in a controlled manner. That is why a helmet that has been dropped should be replaced. Hairline fractures prevent a broad dispersion of the impact force. The shell also prevents any objects from penetrating the helmet. For that to work as required, your head should not move separately inside the helmet, but move with the helmet during a crash.
How a well-fitting helmet protects: Absorbing of impact forces
The EPS liner then absorbs the energy of the impact by crushing with the energy dispersed. A bigger area of EPS padding absorbs the impact more easily; effectively the EPS padding is what protects your skull and brain. Premium motorcycle helmets have different density layers of EPS padding in order to control that process even better.
How a well-fitting helmet protects: Your helmet stays securely in place
The chin strap (when properly fastened) makes sure that the helmet remains on your head. While the comfort pads ensure that the helmet remains in position during the crash and prevents your skull from bouncing within the helmet shell.
Motorcycle Helmet Sizing FAQs
How do I know if my helmet fits properly?
Essentially, if your helmet is too loose or too snug, it does not fit properly. Follow the 3 GetGeared steps to fit your helmet. Once you have done so, your helmet will be snug against your cheeks and back of head, but it won't be uncomfortable or leave pressure indentations on the skin.
What do I do if my new helmet doesn't fit right?
Quite a few of the motorcyclists that we meet in person in the shop have a poorly fitting helmet, either too large or too small, but poorly fitting. And quite often the question is, can you do something about it?
After the event this is difficult to fix and you are best to put it down to experience. Let us help you buy, first time around, the right size helmet and the right fitting helmet. That's what we do!
Why does my motorcycle helmet need to fit a particular way?
Comfort & Safety: Wearing a helmet that's too tight is likely to lead to discomfort and headaches, and wearing one that's too loose will compromise your safety in the event of a crash.
Motorcycle Helmet Sizing: Once you're certain you have the right motorcycle helmet fit
Leave the helmet on for a little while to make sure it doesn't start to give you any discomfort. Then choose your colour and ride away safe, in safety and in style.