Updated: October 14, 2016
Horse Riding Helmet Reviews:Horses are huge animals and we all know that falling off a horse can put someone in the hospital if they hit their head. Over the years there have been some devastating accidents (Christopher Reeves to name one) with riders falling off their horses and injuring themselves. Horse riding helmets are designed to lessen the impact your head/brain will take if you happen to hit your head in a fall. Those that ride horses know that even the periodic hoof can hit you in the head area, so protection is key. My sister rides horses at a local barn and has for almost 2 decades. I went down to the horse barn one weekend to interview her and her fellow riders on what they think of horse helmets and what brands are considered the best. The good news is that each one of them wears a protective equestrian helmet whenever they ride and the barn itself has a rule that any rider must wear a helmet when on a horse. For parents looking to get your kids started in horse back riding, going to barns that have strict safety rules is a good sign. I have included a general buying guide - sizes, brands, prices, safety features, and styles.
Choosing a Horse Riding Helmet - The first thing you need to look for is a ASTM/SEI approved riding helmet. The American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) sets the SAFETY standards and then the Safety Equipment Institute (SEI) tests the helmets and gives certification for those that pass. FIT and COMFORT - What size do I wear? That is a very common question amongst horse riders. There are horse riding helmet sizing charts - we found one on Ebay. The best solution is to measure the circumference of your head (use the widest part of your forehead). The GPS IITM Dial Fit System found in many of the Troxel riding helmets allows for an adjustable fit - great for growing kids or those that change hairstyles. We did hear that some brands fit 'differently' than others. Find the correct size for your head and try it on to make sure it fits comfortably. FEATURES - Some helmets have ventilation holes or moisture wicking sections. With a snug fit, if you are riding in hot conditions, you are bound to sweat under the equestrian helmet. A 3 point retention harness provides for the best fit. STYLE - Many of the helmets we saw are very similar to bike helmets. Horse helmets tend to be a bit heavier duty in construction, but the design and protection dynamics are roughly the same. Many of the girls at my sisters barn have bought the aftermarket accessory riding helmet covers (black polka dots or black velvet) which go over the helmet. They give you a chance to add your own style to the helmet. Most of the Troxel equestrian helmets come in a variety of colors and sizes (small, medium, large, XL) so you should be able to find something that matches your style. Horse riding helmet for kids - look for the small or youth size helmets. Adjustable horse helmets are great for kids who are taking horse back riding lessons and who are not sure if they will continue with horses. If they do, just adjust the helmet to fit their growing head. Equestrian helmets for adults are prevalent in most online horse supply stores or in your local horse shop. We have a shop called Gallops down the road, although pricing can be steep with these types of retailers. Look online for the best pricing possible. You can browse the best selling horse riding helmets here.