If your child skis or snowboards, a helmet reduces the risk of serious head injury. Before you hit the slopes, read these tips from Michael Berry, president of the National Ski Areas Association.
- Select a helmet designed for skiing and snowboarding. It provides more insulation and protection against impact than a bike helmet does.
- Check that it meets an appropriate safety standard. Look for one or more of these labels: ASTM International (formerly known as American Society of Testing and Materials), CEN (European Committee for Standardization), or Snell Memorial Foundation.
- Look for a helmet that's brightly colored. It will be more visible on the slopes than one that's dark.
- Buy a helmet that fits now, not one that your kid can grow into. Make sure it's snug and covers most of her forehead. You shouldn't be able to move it front to back or side to side. Have her wear it centered on top of her head -- not tipped back -- with the chinstrap buckled.
- Take your child's goggles along when buying her helmet. If they don't fit together properly, your child's field of vision can become blocked.
Originally published in the December 2011 issue of Parents magazine.
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