How Often Should You Replace Your Helmet?

by Ross Stockdale

How Often Should You Replace Your Helmet?

No matter how long you've been riding, what discipline you ride or the amount of training you and your horse have, there is always a chance that you could experience an accident. Riding accidents can happen anywhere and at any time  — your horse can unexpectedly spook when you are on a trail ride, trip when schooling over jumps or buck when asked to do a flying lead change at a show. 

While a helmet can't prevent or protect you from all riding injuries, it can save your life. If you do happen to fall, your helmet will absorb and soften the impact, reducing the possibility of serious brain injuries like concussions. 

When Should You Replace Your Riding Helmet?

You should replace your helmet any time you have an accident, even if it doesn't look damaged. Helmets are only designed to handle one impact from a fall. When you hit your head, the foam lining in your helmet most likely cracked or got crushed, meaning it lost its shock-absorbing capabilities. 

Most major helmet manufacturers also recommend replacing your riding helmet after the "expiration date." For most helmets, the expiration date is five years from the day you purchased it. Over the years, natural wear and tear can affect the integrity of the helmet. Riders who ride more frequently, such as trainers riding multiple horses a day, may want to consider replacing their helmet more frequently. 

How to Choose a Riding Helmet

When you are out searching for your next riding helmet, you need to choose one that is certified by the Safety Equipment Institute (SEI) and bears ASTM standard F1163-15. These designations mean that your helmet has been thoroughly tested and meets all the necessary equestrian protective equipment standards. 

You also need to ensure your helmet fits you properly. Wrap a measuring tape around your head (about 1 inch above your eyebrows) and use your helmet manufacturer's chart to compare the results. You want your helmet to fit snug — not too loose or too tight. It's important to always wear your hair the same way when wearing your helmet to keep the fit correct and consistent. Remember to check the size dial and straps each time to ensure the helmet is on correctly. 

Browse Our Collection of Riding Helmets 

Here at Horse Tack Co., we carry a wide range of riding helmets designed to help keep both English and western riders safe each time they climb in the saddle. From Troxel and Ovation to IRH and Charles Owen, we have helmets for all styles and budgets. Whether you are schooling or showing, protect your head with our ASTM- and SEI-approved options. 

We also carry various helmet accessories, including: 

  • Helmet deodorizer. 
  • Helmet stickers. 
  • Helmet covers. 
  • Sun visors.

Have Any Questions? 

Our team of experts here at Horse Tack Co. is ready to answer any questions you have about choosing the right helmet. Give us a call at 866-624-8225 or reach out online and we will get back to you as soon as possible.  

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