FKA Kiteboarding Forums  

Go Back   FKA Kiteboarding Forums > General Discussion > Kiting Magazine Articles > Kiteboarder Magazine
Connect with Facebook

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 03-27-2007, 05:49 PM
RickI's Avatar
RickI RickI is offline
Administrator
Site Admin
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Florida
Posts: 8,652
Default Helmets!





__________________
FKA, Inc.

transcribed by:
Rick Iossi
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 04-23-2007, 09:22 AM
RickI's Avatar
RickI RickI is offline
Administrator
Site Admin
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Florida
Posts: 8,652
Default

A plain text version of this article appears below for easier reading:

Head Case: Anatomy of a Helmet

By James Brown and Rick Iossi

The demand for safer and more stylish helmets for kiteboarding has been met by a growing number of manufacturers. We couldn’t possibly show all of the various models available for water and snow use. So we designed this guide to simply help you make good decisions when you go out searching for your new helmet.

Purpose

Obviously you want to protect your skull and the gray matter we call your “brain” from impact trauma. You also want to avoid being knocked unconscious which puts you at risk of drowning or being dragged into something. A helmet can help to do this by slowing impact by cushioning, spreading the impact area, limiting piercing by sharp objects and abrasion.


Added Benefits

Shades head and eyes from sun and intense heat. Keeps head warmer in cold conditions. If wearing sunglasses or goggles, it can keep them from getting yanked off. You can put stickers on it! Some helmets are even equipped with waterproof ear pieces/mic’s for communications.


Fitting

It should cover the forehead, back and sides without slipping over your eyes, to the sides or backwards exposing the forehead. It should fit snug, but comfortable without readily pulling away much. Straps should hold it in place without any chaffing and have adequate adjustment options to make it fit comfortably. After your first couple of sessions, you won’t even remember it’s there!


Construction

Three basic components - Shell, cushioning and straps

Shell should resist breaking, crushing or piercing. Common materials are plastic or carbon composite.

Cushioning ranges from soft single-layer closed-cell foam (won’t soak up water) to high-density bike helmet style Styrofoam. The higher the foam density among other factors, the better protection you will receive from a violent crash. Bike helmet style foam is the best for land impacts, but they should be replaced in the event of a crash. Even softer so called “multiple-impact” helmets can be compromised by an impact without any visible damage. Your head is worth replacing a helmet if you have a bad crash. Some companies may give you a discount on a replacement helmet.

Straps should be strong and have durable fasteners that won’t rust or corrode. Inspect your connectors when putting on a helmet to make sure they are free of sand that can readily cause the connector to open.


Features to look for

• Impact resistant – the best is high-density foam.
• Durable materials – pick something that can handle some abuse.
• Light-weight – you don’t want to feel the weight, ideally less than 500 grams.
• Comfortable – pick one that feels natural. Try on many different brands and models till you find the right one. Soft, squishy foam can be very comfortable but offer less protection.
• Low drag – helmets for water kiteboarding. Thicker, larger helmets can offer excellent impact protection until you start to hit water when they can become a pain in the neck, literally.
• Straps – get adjustable straps that don’t chaff or choke.
• Fasteners – choose ones that won’t rust or corrode.
• Compact – choose a close fitting helmet without protrusions.
• Goggle shelf and strap (for snow helmets) – indent for the strap to rest in so it doesn’t slide up or down and a strap to hold it in the back.
• Vents - for snow helmets more vents are best for warm days. There are two types. Slide vents allow on-the-fly open and close. Vent plugs that you can remove/replace before your session.
• Ear pads - protect your eardrums from bursting on impact.
• Audio - most snow helmets offer standard or optional ear pads with speakers for listening to your tunes. You can also wear regular ear buds underneath the standard pads for snow or water.
• Style - pick a style that you like. If you don’t wear it, you’ve wasted your money and lose all the great benefits of wearing it.


What to avoid

Any protrusion like bills or visors, lose or poor fit that may cause excess drag or “bucketing.” Bucketing is what happens when a helmet scoops water or snow in a fall. It can cause damage or paralysis in your neck - even in impacts just against water! Avoid excessively large helmets for water kiteboarding that create too much drag on impact with water, e.g. contoured bike helmets. Not all helmets on the market are necessarily appropriate for water or snow kiting. You need to do some homework to improve the odds of selecting a good helmet for water or snow kiting. If you want a bill or visor, get one that can readily break away completely.
__________________
FKA, Inc.

transcribed by:
Rick Iossi
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 04-23-2007, 12:16 PM
BigR's Avatar
BigR BigR is offline
Can't Re-member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: In Motion
Posts: 1,620
Thumbs up

Great write-up Rick!

Congrats!


p.s. that is a nice photoshop of Clarissa on the googles
__________________
__________________
___________________________________
You don't direct ostriches, you herd them
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:17 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Do not advertise outside of [COM] Forums.
Do not show disrespect for others in your postings.
Users can be denied access to this Site without warning.
FKA, Inc., it’s officers and moderators are not responsible
for the content of the postings and any links or pictures posted.

Report Problems by PM to “administrator” or via email to flkitesurfer@hotmail.com

Copyright FKA, Inc. 2004, All Rights Reserved.