A normal half-shell helmet is designed for taking on curbs and repetitive low impact stuff. They’re made of hard ABS plastic and under all that hard shell is the soft cushiony stuff that helps to absorb impact. The Expanded polystyrene (EPS) lining is the barrier that saves your noggin. It also pads up your helmet so your head doesn’t bounce around in it. So these helmets are great for low speed, low impact crashes.
Now, if you’re planning on riding at around 60mph, a half-shell will be pretty useless should you take a tumble at these speeds. What you really need is a full-face helmet. These bad boys are built for speed and heavy impact, just like a motorcycle helmet is.
Our NORK helmets are specifically designed for downhill longboarding, with a chin bar to protect your chin, jaw and cheeks. So, if you do eat it at high speed, it will prevent severe face mangle. They have a fiberglass resin shell for extra protection and similar to the half-shell, they have a thick EPS lining that absorbs impact. These helmets are composites made from fiberglass and carbon fibre resin. The tough, scratch resistant visors also protect your eyes from the sun’s glare, so you can see where you’re headed.
You should always check that the full-face helmet you’re buying has ASTM, CPSC and EN1078 approval. These are international safety standards. If your helmet meets these requirements it’ll be perfect for protecting you while you’re shredding. A major consideration is your visibility when in a tuck. Obviously your head will be angled down and you’ll be looking up, so vision in tuck is an important factor, as you don’t want your road ahead to be obscured by a low helmet forehead section. This is often the case when using a helmet that has not been specifically designed for downhill (e.g. a motorbike helmet). So what you want is a helmet that has a large vertical window across the front of the visor.
Safety, fit and design are the most important things to think about when buying any helmet, but we all want one that looks cool too. We reckon we’ve nailed the styling of our NORK helmets.