Bicycle Helmet Safety

provided by Alberta Health Services EMS; Photo:

Head injuries are a leading cause of serious injury and death to children riding bicycles. Most injuries occur when a cyclist suffers a fall, strikes a stationary object or collides with another cyclist/pedestrian.

Remember – it’s the law in Alberta that cyclists under the age of 18 must wear a helmet (and highly recommended for all ages). Helmets should be CSA approved and worn during recreational activities such as skateboarding, in-line skating or cycling.

 Getting informed

  • Wearing a helmet while cycling can prevent a serious injury, or even save a life.
  • Brain injuries can cause permanent disability or death.
  • Reduce your risk by always wearing your helmet.
  • Replace any helmet that has been involved in a crash, even if it appears undamaged.

Getting started

  • Allow children to assist when buying their helmet. Cyclists who choose their own helmet are more likely to wear them.
  • Start the habit early. Young children learning to ride tricycles need to wear helmets.
  • Parents must lead by example – always wear a helmet when cycling.

Getting the right fit

  • Take the time to properly fit and adjust your helmet to
    ensure maximum protection in case of a crash.
  • When worn properly, helmets should fit level, not tilted up, or down over the forehead.
  • Helmets should feel snug, but not too tight. To test the fit, the helmet should not fall off when you shake your head from side-to-side while the straps are unfastened.
  • Adjust the chin straps to form a ‘Y’ below and slightly forward from the ears.
  • Only one finger should be able to fit under the chin strap when it is fastened.
  • Do not forget to use the sizing pads included with the helmet. They will help improve the overall fit, comfort and safety.