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Marketing trends suggest that ‘touring’ helmets are what you need for long rides. But what exactly is a touring helmet and what should you look for when buying one?
Looking for a new helmet but don’t know where to start? Open-faced, full, jet, modular, street, touring... the list is never ending. Latest trends point to ‘touring’ helmets. But what exactly is one? How different is it from a normal helmet? We may have an answer for you.
If you’re going to put decent miles, you must look for a full-face helmet. They not only provide maximum protection but also keep you from unwanted wind buffeting and noise. A lot of buyers shy away from buying full-face helmets but modern lids come with excellent ventilation, so fret not.
Having a good field of vision is primary when looking for a helmet. You should ideally be looking for a helmet that comes with an anti-scratch visor and Pinlock compatibility or which comes with anti-fog coating. Get a helmet with easy visor mechanism as you’ll be operating the helmet with your gloves on.
You may not be spending time on a racetrack but that doesn’t mean you should be carrying bucketloads of weight around. Your lid’s weight can make a huge difference on your neck. Wearing it for hours at an end adds strain to your neck which already has the task of carrying 4.5-5kg of your body mass.
Many riders associate having an aerodynamic helmet with race helmets as opposed to touring. However, clearly designed helmets ensure that the air movement around the shape is as smooth as possible equating to minimal wind buffeting and noise.
Integrated sun visor
We’ve all had it. Turn into a corner and the sun is trying its best to blind you over the top of a hedgegrow. An easy to use, integrated sun visor is a must which refrains you from halting and putting on sunglasses or worse still, squint to see. Look for a helmet that has an easy operating mechanism and fully-covered visor.
High levels of comfort start with a good fit, so make sure you’re opting for the correct size. Good ventilation is important too - look for a helmet that has adjustable inlet and outlet vents. Even better if they can be opened/closed, on-the-go. We’d also recommend looking for helmets that feature a removable and washable interior so that you can keep it fresh and clean.
1. Shark Spartan GT Carbon
2. Arai Profile-V
3. HJC RPHA 11