What Each Motorcycle Helmet Safety Rating Means


Parsing the different motorcycle safety ratings can be a bit of an uphill battle for beginners, but the important thing to keep in mind is that each one has its own significance, and not every safety endorsement is absolutely necessary for every helmet you buy. There are a couple that demonstrates an adequate range of safety testing for the forces encountered in accidents at road and highway speeds, and those are used by various governments to decide which helmets are legal. For the rest of the safety ratings and endorsements you see, the goals are to certify helmets for various off-road and track competitions.

Sometimes, motorcycle helmets with a high impact safety rating that makes them appropriate for track use or off-road riding are still illegal for road use because of their size or field of vision, or for other reasons that have nothing to do with strength. That’s why you need to make sure the basic safety ratings for road legality are present on any helmet you wear for a ride on public roadways.

Why You Need to Make Sure Your Motorcycle Helmet Comes With These Safety Ratings

The two most important safety ratings for road helmets are DOT and ECE certification. Both are awarded on a pass/fail basis, so you just need to look for the DOT or ECE sticker on the helmet to know it’s certified. The DOT certification is from the Department of Transportation, the U.S. government’s federal road safety oversight agency. It’s an older standard but one with robust requirements that simulate many forces encountered in common traffic accidents at various speeds. DOT stickers are required for all road helmets in the U.S., and wearing an illegal helmet is often a ticketable offence in states with mandatory helmet laws.

The ECE is the Economic Commission for Europe, and its standards for safety are a little newer than the DOT standards, so they use a different set of tests. Over 50 countries require ECE endorsement on-road helmets and most major manufacturers looking to sell internationally get certified by both agencies to gain wide distribution. Additionally, track helmets for officially ranked competitive events are often required to use the FIM standard, which was designed by the global racing organization that oversees organized motorcycle events.

Small Differences That Differentiate a Man’s Helmet Form a Women’s Motorcycle Helmet

Most women’s motorcycle helmets are little different from a men’s helmet designed for the same head size and shape, but that doesn’t mean there is not a difference. Women tend to have an average head shape that is a little different from the average for men, with a greater tendency on average toward intermediate oval shapes rather than the long oval that is most common for men’s designs. Knowing that and checking your own head shape and size, it is possible to shop for helmets without regard to gender if you’re careful about looking into the optimum shape the manufacturer intends. You’ll find a wide selection with a huge range of sizes from all today’s top manufacturers from the same people you already trust to bring you the best motorcycle jackets for men each season.