Helmets are a big part of canoeing, anyone who is interested in such should know how to choose a canoe helmet. When looking for a helmet for canoeing, you'll find that people will call them kayaking helmets also. They are basically the same thing and serve the same purpose. Don't feel like you shouldn't buy a kayak helmet because of it's name.
When looking for a kayak or canoe helmet there a few things that should be looked for:
- The outside of the helmet should be made from carbon fiber or kevlar. Kevlar is used when making bullet proof vests. It's a really strong material, that is meant to protect from injury.
- The inside cushion should be half an inch to an inch thick. If it is any less than half an inch, you run the risk of not having enough protection. Half an inch is enough to protect your head, but it is strongly recommended you do not go under half an inch.
- Look for a proper fit. A helmet shouldn't be too tight or too loose. A good rule of thumb is to make sure the helmet shows some resistance while you take it off of your head. Though, it shouldn't be uncomfortably tight.
- Look for a helmet that protects ears, forehead and the back of your head. When looking for a helmet find one that protects the ears, but doesn't cover them. When canoeing, you want to especially look for a helmet that protects the sides of your head because all of the dangers that come with falling in the water happen around your head, not on top of it.
- Make sure your helmet has a quick release chin strap buckle. If your helmet becomes attached on something under water, you want to be able to quickly get it off. If it's not able to be removed easily you risk drowning.
- Get a helmet that you can still hear with. Some helmets cover your ears, it's best to avoid these, because you'll need to hear the people you are with.
There are many different styles of canoe helmets available. Choosing one will be mainly about safety, personal preference and price. If price is a problem, many people sell their used canoe helmets online. You might also want to ask your local canoe or kayak shop about any offers they have going on. Also, make sure you ask an employee at your local canoe shop any questions you have. Any shop that is serious about canoeing and kayaking will have people working there that know about those sports. With a little knowledge and a little patience you'll should learn how to choose a canoe helmet.