Aside from cyclists and motorcyclists, it is rare to see civilians donning helmets. Protective headgear is commonly considered to be only relevant to professionals such as firefighters, law enforcement, or military personnel. However, there are many reasons why a civilian may find it useful to have a quality helmet within reach. Here are some of them.
If you partake in sports such as base jumping, motocross, mountain biking, skateboarding, or skiing, you likely anticipate falling on occasion. While you may only take a tumble once in a blue moon, you want to ensure that you are well protected when it happens. Wearing protective headgear is critical for young adults and teens, who suffer the majority of extreme sports injuries.
According to studies, 83 percent of injuries sustained during extreme sports are to the head, with concussions being the most frequent form of head or neck injury. Skateboarding, snowboarding, and skiing are the three sports with the highest incidents of head and neck injuries with skateboarders having the highest risk of skull fractures. Medical professionals firmly recommend the use of helmets when participating in these popular sports.
Helmets can be useful as bases on which you can attach accessories. For instance, instead of strapping a headlamp onto your head, you can attach reflective patches and headlamps to your helmet to increase visibility when you ride a bicycle at night. Similarly, many helmets can be fitted with eyewear attachments to ensure that your eye protection accessories such as anti-glare goggles remain firmly attached regardless of your movement.
Another accessory that is frequently attached to helmets is the action camera. Helmet cameras can be used to record recreation or tourism footage, freeing up your hands and allowing for more complete documentation of the experience. For sports such as airsoft or motocross, it is essential to have full use of your hands. Likewise, helmet cameras are excellent for recording training exercises for firefighters or military personnel.
The possibility of having to defend your property from a breach is a valid concern for many people who live in remote areas or homesteads. Law enforcement is typically stationed far away and can take a long time to arrive. Before they arrive, you are the only line of defense between the intruders and your family. Hence, it is useful to have a full set of protective gear—or a Kevlar helmet and vest at the very least—to shield you from serious injury.
An accessory that can be helpful in nighttime emergencies is a night vision system that can be mounted onto your helmet. Most opportunistic intruders are poorly prepared. They may not have the tools to help them to navigate well in the dark. If you have night vision set up on your helmet, you may gain a valuable advantage. Unlike flashlights that give away your position, night vision will allow you to hide or slip away without harm.
In Case of Disaster
If you live in an earthquake or hurricane zone, it may pay to have a helmet ready. Helmets provide vital protection for your head and skull from falling objects and can increase the chances of a safe evacuation. The aftermath of a disaster is also important to consider as there may be incidents that threaten your safety such as battling for supplies or looting. It is prudent to have protective gear for such contingencies.
On the Job
Certain positions such as security or law enforcement come with an increased risk of attack or physical harm. However, not all companies or public departments have the budget to provide their employees with high-quality protective equipment. A ballistic helmet or vest could be the difference between life and death. So, if your employer does not provide you with the best equipment, you should think about purchasing it yourself.
What is Kevlar?
Kevlar is a material that is made from exceptionally strong yet lightweight synthetic polymer threads. The material belongs to a class of aramid (aromatic polyamide) fibers that are made up of repeated molecular polymer chains. Kevlar was invented in 1965 by Stephanie L. Kwolek, a Polish-American chemist working at DuPont. Due to its unique properties, its strength-to-weight ratio is five times higher than steel and it can be made even tougher through combination with other composite materials.
Since it was trademarked and launched for mass production in 1971, Kevlar has been used in hundreds of products from tennis rackets to bridge reinforcements. The public is most aware, however, of the use of Kevlar in body armor. Kevlar is extremely rigid and holds its shape well even under significant impact or force. Therefore, it has been used in armored cars, bulletproof vests, and ballistics helmets to prevent bullet penetration.
Although we often see helmets as equipment that is exclusive to the military, there are many practical uses of protective headgear for civilians. While you may not need to get ops-grade Kevlar helmets for everyday purposes, high-end helmets provide extra protection and a tailored experience for users who prefer tactical gear. Consider your priorities for protection when choosing a helmet for yourself.