Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Should I wear a Soft Foam Helmet or a Hard Foam Helmet?

Question #1:
Should I wear a Soft Foam Helmet or a Hard Foam Helmet?

The Answer is:    Hard Foam Helmet.

If you are riding a skateboard, bike or roller skates. You should ALWAYS wear a CPSC certified helmet. And the only helmets that pass the CPSC test are hard foam (eps) helmets. A Hard Foam Helmet is much more effective at reducing the risks of concussion in Skateboarding, BMX and Roller Derby.

Question #2:
What the heck is a "multiple impact" helmet?

The Answer is:
You should just stop calling your helmet a "Multiple Impact" Helmet. Stop using this term.  No helmet is "Multiple Impact" if it gets hit hard enough!!!!!

Both the soft foam helmets & hard foam helmets are considered multiple impact helmets in minor less significant hits.  And in the case of severe impacts they are both considered single impact helmets. 

The bottom line is that a hard foam helmet (that is CPSC Certified) absorb up to 5 times more impact than soft foam (non-certified) helmets. The whole point of wearing a helmet is to protect your brain from absorbing shock in head impacts. So why not wear a helmet that performs this task the best?

More Information: (if you want to learn even more about all this stuff)
Here is some clarification as to what is widely considered a “Single Impact” and what is considered “Multiple Impact”.

"Multiple Impact"
What is commonly known as, "Multiple Impact", has been a soft foam (eva foam , epp foam) non-certified helmet. The idea here is that the foam is soft and compresses on impact and than rebounds back to absorb another impact. The helmet does do this to an extent but after a heavy impact it should be replaced because it has most likely been compromised. In reality, “Soft Foam” helmets are merely minimum impact helmets.  They do NOT pass any certification testing parameters!  They do not pass the ASTM 1492 test or the CPSC standard test for Bike and Skate.

 "Single Impact"
The idea of a “single impact” helmet is that you have hard foam EPS (Expanded Poly Styrene) as the inner foam mold. This EPS mold is designed to crush or crack on impact.  By crushing or cracking it is absorbing the energy that would normally be going into your head.
The misconception of these helmets is that they can only take one impact. These helmets have to take multiple impact hits (4)  in different areas of the helmet in order to pass the CPSC certification test. The hard foam helmet can take minor impacts, bumps and hits and still maintain its shock absorbing abilities just like a soft foam helmet. The Hard foam helmets are much more durable than many people think. However just like a soft foam helmet if the helmet is involved in a heavy impact it should be replaced.

S-One highly recommends that you wear a Hard Foam (CPSC Certified) helmet because a hard foam (cpsc) helmet will protect your head better than a Soft Foam (non-cpsc) Helmet. Both helmets are multiple impact for low impacts. And both helmets are are single impact in the case of heavy slams. The only difference is that the Hard Foam helmet absorbs more impact in the heavy slams.  Get it? Good. :)

Check out the S-One CPSC Certified Helmet selection here.

Watch an S1 Lifer Helmet vs a Soft Foam Helmet:
S1 Lifer Helmet Vs. Soft Foam Helmet (Helmet Testing Lab) from s-one helmet co / s1helmets on Vimeo.

Watch an S1 Lifer Helmet VS. Soft Foam Helmet Vs Hockey Helmet - The S1 Lifer Helmet is the only helmet that passes the Mulitple Impact Certification Test !
Multiple Impact Helmet Test from s-one helmet co / s1helmets on Vimeo.