With cricketers under the age of eighteen now required to wear a cricket helmet as standard, many parents are finding it hard to choose when it comes to their child’s safety.
There are a number of criteria needed to fulfil when buying a cricket helmet.
- The head gear must do its principle function in preventing injury.
- The helmet must be comfortable to wear, be lightweight and, if well fitted, be unstable when running.
- All helmets must be kite marked and conform to British Standards
All reputable cricket specialists will only stock helmets that have passed the required safety tests. So choosing a helmet really comes down to comfort and budget. Most of the latest cricket helmets available have some adjustments which make sure of user comfort. By using a combination of helmet nut settings the grille can be positioned to prevent a cricket ball passing under the visor whilst still allowing good visibility.
The chin strap should be adjusted to prevent the helmet falling off during the execution of shots. This can sometimes happen when the ball rises steeply off the pitch.
Some helmets have an adjustable ratchet or an adjustable band which brings the helmet snug behind the head and stops the visor drooping in front of the eyes when running.
Another means of ensuring a comfortable fit is given by manufacturers providing padding kits. The pads come in different thicknesses which can be used in any combination to fit the dimensions of your head.
Try to remember that even though your child’s head may have the same size circumference as the helmet you’re buying it does not guarantee a perfect fit. Heads come in all different shapes and sizes; it’s the way we were made. The same is true of the different cricket helmets available and some will be narrow, some wide and some a perfect circle! If in doubt with sizing try to get a helmet with most adjustment options to increase your chances of it fitting.
Bearing in mind the hot and humid conditions cricket is played in, for increased comfort some helmets have exposed vents to allow easy heat dissipation. If you tend to sweat heavily while wearing the helmet some brands have removable padding and headbands which can be run under a tap.
As well as being made from very strong, lightweight carbon fibre you can opt for a grill made with titanium. The comparable steel grille weighs three times the titanium equal. The downside however is that the weight saving comes at a heavy price in your pocket.
Some cricket helmet manufacturers have cloth finish or a wipe clean plastic outer shell options and come in a number of colour choices. The cloth-covered helmets are the more traditional option and are generally more popular, however the plastic finish helmets offer a more modern look and have become all the rage with the younger cricketer.
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