For everyone who rides, mountain bike helmets are the single most important piece of equipment. Although back in the day some people rode without helmets, it's just not safe to do—and any serious rider won't. At BTO Sports we carry a wide range of styles of mountain bike helmets and BMX helmets so you're sure to find the right look and fit for your riding lifestyle.
Mountain bike helmets and BMX helmets have reaped the benefits that science, engineering, and technology have had to offer in recent years. Today's MTB helmets feature added coverage, with more emphasis on protecting the back of the head. Modern BMX helmets and MTB helmets look a lot like motocross helmets, with a full-face design.
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BMX Helmets and MTB Helmets
Mountain bike helmets are either full-face or half-shell. Full-face helmets look like motocross helmets and cover the entire head; they also have a chin guard which protects the part of the face. Half-shell helmets look somewhat like road bike helmets, and mostly protect the top of the head. Full-face helmets are the more common choice for both BMX helmets and MTB helmets for more aggressive downhill riding.
Both half-shell and full-face mountain bike helmets have visors which protect the eyes from mud, rain, and sun. These visors are typically adjustable, letting you pick their angle based on your course or the weather (just like you adjust your car's sun visor as you drive) to get more or less protective power for your eyes. Even so, both half-shell and full-face MTB helmets can be worn with goggles, and this is the preferred choice. They are more secure than glasses and offer more protection (and most downhill riders consider glasses with full-face helmets to be a fashion “don't”).
For the rider who loves to tackle aggressive courses, serious off-road challenges, and steep descents, full-face mountain bike helmets are probably the best choice. They cover and protect the entire head from injury and provide the most coverage. If serious or violent crashes are at all likely for you given your style and preferences, the design of full-face MTB helmets includes the additional benefit of the chin guard—extra insurance against eating dirt and losing teeth. Unlike half-shell MTB and BMX helmets, they can also safely be worn with a neck brace.
There are down sides to the full-face mountain bike helmet, of course. They are the heaviest type and also the least ventilated. This can take some getting used to. If you have the ability to invest in carbon fiber models which are lighter, that helps. Full-face MTB helmets also cover your ears, making it harder to hear and a little trickier to get in and out of.
Still not sure which kind of MTB or BMX helmets might be best for you? Reach out, we'd love to talk to you about our mountain bike helmets. At BTO Sports, we are available for all of your questions, and we have the expert knowledge to answer them because we ride too.