What is MIPS Bike Helmet? Is It Really Safe?

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What is MIPS bike helmet and how does it work?

Before we know what is MIPS bike helmet we should know that wearing a helmet is not merely a legal obligation, but it is, first of all, an essential safety measure for the driver (and for the passenger).

According to Istat data relating to road accidents, in 2017, these decreased by 4.2%, but those of motorcyclists and cyclists increased.These data do nothing but confirm that cycle helmet are a fundamental element for the safety of those who drive a two-wheeler and the passenger. Because you must consider that you must protect yourself from non-compliance with the highway code and the distraction of those you find on the road.

Excess speed, failure to use safety devices, and mobile phone use while driving find the causes. Mips is one kind of technology which gives you better safety while bike riding. So we have to know what is MIPS bike helmet and how it works.So, further any questions, let’s get started.

Getting know: What is MIPS bike helmet, and how does it work?

Choosing the helmet correctly will help to avoid unpleasant consequences in the event of an accident. In addition to not getting “useless” fines, the helmet protects us from the asphalt impact. When we are about to choose our dear and faithful travel companion, we try to follow these small rules: they will help us with the correct purchase, or at least they will give us good help. Before knowing the details, we have to know the MIPS definition and the work process in more information. Let’s have a look.

What is MIPS bike helmet?

MIPS stands for “Multidirectional Impact Protection System.” After many years of study, we have combined the classic head protection with MIPS to improve the protection against angular impacts. It is a sliding plane system designed to rotate inside the helmet with the intent of decreasing and slowing down the quantity of energy substituted to the head. It also reduces injuries caused by impacts rotational. MIPS required several years of collaboration with designers. Scientists developed the technology at Karolinska Hospital and the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden. Scientists found this concept after 19 years of academic research.  Here are some following benefits of using a MIPS helmet that you should know before purchasing.

1) Imitating the brain:

MIPS copies the brain’s protection mode thanks to the reduced friction layer between the outer shell and the helmet liner.

2) Low friction layer:

In a MIPS helmet, a low-friction layer separates the shell and liner that allows the helmet to slide relative to the head during an angular impact.

3) Angular impact:

Traditional helmets are examined by shooting them vertically on a level outside. Companies design the MIPS covers to trade with how some events can happen, with angular forces to the end.

How does MIPS work?

MIPS is an additional layer inside your helmet. Regardless of the helmet, that layer could rotate slightly when it comes into contact with the ground. The outer layer of your helmet captures the big shot. MIPS ensures that the head can move a little inside the helmet. It assists stop head injury. MIPS can bring ten to fifteen mm related to the headgear. It doesn’t appear like much, but it’s just to make a variation.

MIPS in all brands of bike helmets

As surprising as it may be, a bicycle helmet manufacturer didn’t conceive MIPS but by a Swedish team of brain specialists. The latter realized the improvements that the helmets could be subjected to, allowing them to develop MIPS. That’s why MIPS can be located in various companies such as BontragerPOCAbusBell en Lrazer, Gpiro, and Giant. A helmet with MIPS more valuable than a helmet. But the cost variations are becoming smaller and more petite.

The MIPS helmet: different models to choose from

Now you know what is MIPS bike helmet. Now you should know what are the motorcycle helmet models that can be found on the market. Here is a summary of the most common ones:

Full-face helmet

Full face helmet covers the entire head and consists of a movable visor. Professionals often use it and indicate it with a P in terms of approval;

Jet helmet , open or semi-integral

Unlike the full-face helmet, it does not cover the lower part of the face it protects the head up to the cheeks but leaves the jaw and jaw exposed. A J in terms of homologation indicates it.

Demi-Jet helmet 

It differs from Jet in that it does not offer coverage on the cheeks, very often its visor is removable.

Modular helmet :

Offers the possibility to remove or move the chin guard, thus offering greater comfort to the motorcyclist.

The different materials and structures of MIPS bike helmets

The materials and structures used to design a bike helmet vary from one model to another. Design differences can include impact resistance values, weight, life cycle/durability, comfort, and consequently, price. Let’s start by analyzing the individual components.

The shell

The outer part of the helmet is the most visible and aesthetically most relevant on which screen-printed prints and paints are applied. PVC, polycarbonate, and sometimes carbon reinforcements can make it. The material chosen has a direct impact on the price of the helmet (low-cost PVC and high-end polycarbonate) and longevity. PVC aged much faster than polyurethane when exposed to sunlight frequently.  

Therefore you should replace a PVC helmet every two years. You can replace the polycarbonate models on an average of five years. The paint applied to the exterior affects the air penetration coefficient. Specific paint finishes the high-end helmets and designed to improve this coefficient. This is especially true of the high-end models, as the cost is also high.

The main structure: the polystyrene shell

It is the most important component of the bike helmet. Steam under pressure into the molds injects the polystyrene. It has 100% polystyrene shells, and these are the least expensive solutions. It is the least resistant to many impacts and uses it in entry-level bike helmets. The high-end helmets have an internal expanded polystyrene frame, which reduces the volume of the injected polystyrene. It gives greater resistance to multiple impacts.

Screen or visor

The visor or visor is the part of the helmet through which you can see the outside. There are many types of visors. Plastic makes the screens and can be transparent, tinted, or colored. Besides, these visors on current helmet models can be interchanged. For example, a screen must be made of hard plastic and have both of products to avoid fog, not scratch, and UVA rays.

Outer layer

A multitude of layers and various components make up shells. The shell is the outer part of the helmet that absorbs blows’ energy, and its mission is to decrease it as much as possible.

Injected thermo-plastic

It is a simple and inexpensive material; they resemble ABS or polycarbonate. You should change them every 4-6 years. In the event of an impact, the absorption of a possible blow is concentrated in a single point and as time goes by, its absorption capacity diminishes.

Reinforced resin material “fiberglass”

It is the material that best fits the blows. Its benefits are suitable for the money it costs. The shell distributes the impact, reducing possible damage that may occur in a fall or blow. It is light.

How to choose the right MIPS helmet

Precisely, because of its importance on the road when we are riding, art regulates the helmet’s choice. In this case, the savings element must be set aside to leave room for safety, which is the only detail that must be of interest. A helmet that does not meet your needs and those of road safety is a useless object.

Helmets must always be homologated, this is the first rule. If it is not approved, it is subject to seizure and confiscation. The choice will fall on one of the existing models on the market, which are divided into integral, Jet, Demijet, modular. As you can guess from the name, the full-face helmet covers the whole head and has a movable visor.

One size for every rider

As with any other item that must fit perfectly, bike helmets also have a perfect fit for every rider. Measuring the head’s circumference just above the eyebrows with a tailor’s centimeter can take the right measure. Once you know this, it will be easier to make the right choice. The advice to always follow is to never buy a helmet without knowing the precise measurement of the head circumference because a helmet that does not fit perfectly will be a useless and not at all safe helmet. Objects that do not respect necessary details such as size will only worsen the situation in road accidents, even if not profound.

Fixing and adjustment systems

First, in the event of an accident, the helmet must remain on the head to be effective. Just like shoes, helmets from different brands are all made to fit slightly different shapes. So it’s important to try before you buy. Most helmets use a dial-based adjustment system to adjust the fit. The vertical adjustment range (for example, how high or low the rear adjustment mounts are on the head) also varies from helmet to helmet, so this is also something to keep an eye on.

Materials

Expanded polystyrene foam (EPS) mainly makes most bike helmets. This design is then coated, to varying degrees, in an obstinate case (and seldom with carbon fiber) to combine concentration and preserve the EPS foam from unexpected bumps and cuts.

This basic structure has been around for decades now, but other manufacturing techniques and materials are starting to emerge, such as 3D printed polyamide 11 or other “proprietary polymeric materials.”

Security features

While not talking about helmets’ overall effectiveness, it is deserving noting that all helmets sold in the PU should comply with the standard UN 10008 (and therefore have the PCE value). All helmets that comply with these organizations offer head protection against bumps and scratches if you fall off the bike while riding.

Ventilation

For fast driving on the road, especially in hot climates, ventilation is essential. A well-designed vents and channels system in a helmet’s internal structure can help draw air over the head and dissipate heat. The insertion of holes in a helmet to increase ventilation can reduce weight and, potentially, to less strength. To remedy this, helmets often need more external reinforcement or more expensive materials build it to ensure they still meet safety and durability standards.

Now you know what is MIPS bike helmet. But factors that we should know before choosing a MIPS helmet

Does a cheap helmet protect just as well?

The price does not affect the ability to protect in the event of a collision. If the helmet complies with the European safety standards in force with the CE EN 1078, ANSI, and SNELL certifications, it has been validated, approved, and tested. But be careful; this European standard (the rules differ from country to country) is based on the helmet’s ability to absorb only two different types of impact.

Internal structures reinforce the high-end helmets (armed), which are crucial to withstand many impacts during the fall. In fact, it is highly probable that a biker will suffer many different kinds of effects in the event of a fall.

Likewise, material aging is generally faster on low-end models because the materials the company uses are less durable! On the other hand, the price of the MIPS is a little costly but has great value.

The weight of the helmet

As we have seen, bike helmets are designed with a material made to absorb and resist shocks. Low-end helmets are generally quite heavy and have a construction closer to a full, thick, and durable shell. A material also covers the top to act as a reinforcement ( PVC, polycarbonate, or carbon ). The high-end helmets use rigid foams of different densities to save weight in less vital points for the biker’s head, but on the contrary, rigid foams have a high density of important parts of the head protection in case of impact. The high-end ones have their internal structure reinforced with Kevlar, nylon, aramid, or carbon. It maintains the effectiveness of the impact protection but allows you to lighten the weight while also offering greater ventilation, which is very important for the skull.

Ventilation of the skull

The pressure cooker effect is the biker’s enemy in the summer. The helmet must therefore be well ventilated, i.e., allow adequate ventilation. As we have seen, the more the helmet is ventilated, with a perforated structure, the more the technical materials that compose it will be technological. Therefore it is expensive to compensate for the lack of material to resist shocks without cracking during the impact. The study and design of the air passage on the head also require a specific design effort.

Helmet maintenance

Comfort is essential when wearing a helmet for many hours. The points of contact with the skull, forehead, temples, and the back of the head are the main points where the helmet rests. The low-end helmets are equipped with a “standard” head profile, while the top models have a finer and more ergonomic design and are perfectly protected by antibacterial foams. The plastics used are also less coarse and more refined, perfectly integrated into the helmet, and offer a more pleasant feeling.

Bonus Tips: Adjustments for the bike helmet

In a bike helmet, there are three main mounts/adjustments:

  • The chin strap adjustment that rests under the biker’s jaw
  • The side straps
  • The occipital support on the back of the skull.

The quality of the chin strap plays an important role. The finer the adjustment, the better the tightening and adjustment possibilities and consequently the comfort. The side straps, their adjustability, the thickness of the fabric used, and their anchor points impact the quality and design of the bicycle helmet, increasing its cost. A well-designed adjustment allows adapting the helmet to the biker’s morphology perfectly. The quality of the advanced occipital support adjustment is an additional cost.

Some helmets are still equipped with notched clamps (adjustments by pressure and sliding). In contrast, high-end helmets adopt the adjustment wheel system. It is allowing adjustment to the millimeter provided that the cutout is well finished and well worked.

Final verdicts

Wearing a helmet is an extremely important factor to be able to travel safely with your bike. It is not just a legal obligation but a precious habit that every motorcyclist should observe. In addition to its life-saving function. That’s why we should wear a helmet for safety.

MIPS technology offers you perfect head safety while riding. Intended as a life-saving element or as a means of expressing one’s personality, the helmet is undoubtedly a bike accessory of extreme importance to understand how it works and to dwell on carefully before purchasing. Traveling safely is a factor that absolutely cannot be taken lightly! If you are already following this article properly, you may know What is MIPS bike helmet and how it works. If you need more asks, let us know via email or comment below the post. Thank you for your concentration.

Testing MIPS Helmet with a Crash

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