Lacrosse Helmet Buying Guide
What is a Lacrosse Helmet?
Most people spend a lot of time trying to find the right lacrosse stick or head, but most people don’t realize that the helmet is equally as important, because it keeps you safe out on the field. We explored the top rated helmets on the market, and now in this buyer’s guide we’ll take an in-depth look at lacrosse helmets, and the features that you really need to look out for.
Your lacrosse helmet is your best defense against taking a career-ending hit out on the field. If you love playing lacrosse, then you need to make sure that you keep yourself safe so that you can play the game for years to come.
Not only do you want to read this before you drop some serious cash on a lacrosse helmet, but you also need to ask yourself some key questions along the way. You need to narrow down what your style is, what kind of fit you’re looking for, and the level of protection that you need. Your skill set comes into play here, as well as how often you play the game. Lastly, you can take into consideration what elements you’d like to add to your helmet, such as decals, helmet wraps, and even lacrosse visors.
Safety is Key
No matter how tricked-out you make your helmet, it’s really all about safety. Lacrosse is growing in popularity, and this only means that players are getting faster, bigger, and even more competitive than ever before. If you seek to play with the best of them then you need to wear a safe and high quality lacrosse helmet to keep you safe at all times. Concussions are a serious problem in sports, and that’s why it’s vital to keep your head safe. The only way to do this is with a high-performance lacrosse helmet. If you’re a goalie then protection is even more important. Make sure that you add a throat protector to your lacrosse goalie helmet.
The gold standard for assessing the quality of lacrosse helmets is the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment. You want to absolutely be sure before you purchase a helmet that it is NOCSAE certified. You’ll know that it is by the logo on the box. These helmets that are certified go through a number of tests to ensure that they can handle the abuse that happens out on the field.
Lacrosse Helmet Design
When it comes to protecting your face, neck, and head from injury, you need a lacrosse helmet because they’re designed for full cranial protection. The helmet acts as a complete shell that surrounds your head, and this can integrate with a full face mask for the ultimate in protection out on the field. If you wear the helmet properly it is going to protect you from hard shots, and reduce any risk of spinal injury. Lets take a look at the parts of the lacrosse helmet, and these can vary from helmet to helmet.
- Hard Plastic Shell: This is a single piece that is impact-resistant, and it’s made from lightweight plastic or polycarbonate. This shell will protect you from impact without weighing you down. The best helmets are also going to add ventilation to the equation, as well as technologies that give you a comfortable feel.
- Visor: The visors fits onto the helmet and keeps the sun from shining in your eyes. It does this without obscuring your vision, as well. This will integrate with the shell piece, giving you a rigid protection system that won’t budge even upon impact.
- Thick Internal Padding: The lacrosse helmet shell is lined with an impact-absorbing foam that is durable and disperses impact energy to protect your head from injury.
- Metal Facemask: This mask is made from a strong yet lightweight metal material like steel or tungsten. Most face masks are grid-patterned for full facial protection that does not obscure visibility. Any high-performance helmet should give you a wide face mask for the best possible visibility.
- Chin Bar: This integrates into the shell, and it’s designed to protect the chin while still giving you easy communication and ventilation. Most chin bars are injection molded, or they can be filled with fiberglass for a more durable, rigid construction. The chin bar is going to manage impact energy from any front hits.
- Chin Straps: The chin strap is designed to improve the fit of the helmet, and it keeps the helmet and chin bar in place when you’re out on the field.
Why use a Lacrosse Helmet?
Lacrosse is a full-contact sport, and that makes it a high-impact sport. To play this sport and stay safe, you need lacrosse padding and helmet to keep you protected from impact between players, stick checks, and any hard shots or passes. The helmet is designed to keep your head, neck, and face safe from injury.
When you play without a helmet you could end up with some serious injuries. By wearing a high-performance helmet you can still take a hit without getting injured, allowing you to keep playing for years to come. If you love the sport of lacrosse then you owe it to yourself to invest in a high quality helmet that is going to extend your years of playing.
Do lacrosse leagues require helmets?
Helmets are a requirement for all men’s lacrosse and youth boy’s lacrosse leagues, and for good reason. When it comes to women’s and girls lacrosse, there are some variations in rules. Usually there is less physical contact in women’s lacrosse, and this is why helmets are optional. Female lacrosse players will often wear goggles that protect their face and eyes from impacts and high shots. Goalies in women’s lacrosse are however required to wear a helmet.
Finding the Right Fit for a Lacrosse Helmet
When it comes to fitting a lacrosse helmet, you want to make sure that you get a snug fit, while still experiencing comfort. A safe helmet is going to stay on your head, and it won’t shift while you move. A helmet should also provide you good visibility while staying securely on your head. Most helmets come in only one size, and then there’s a micro-adjuster knob in the back of the helmet. This knob will tighten or loosen the helmet around your head, giving you a snug fit that won’t budge.
When you have a properly fitting helmet it should sit squarely on your head with the front of the helmet just about one finger’s width above your eyebrows. This means that the helmet is capable of protecting your forehead. Make sure that the padding of the helmet fits firmly on your head without any feeling of tightness, as this can give you a headache. You should still be able to move the skin of your forehead back and forth when wearing the helmet. You want to be sure to tighten the chin strap so that there’s no slack, and then you’re good to go.
What is a Helmet Tilt?
The term ‘tilt’ refers to how the helmet sits on your head. More specifically, it means how low the helmet is on your head. The tilt of the helmet is mostly about style, and most players desire it because it looks pretty intimidating.
There are other uses for the tilt, as it improves visibility and provides superior chin protection. When you do not tilt your helmet you are looking through the middle bar, which is an incorrect placement. By tilting the helmet you can see through the top bar, and this gives you the very best visibility.
There’s no question that you need to own a lacrosse helmet if you competitively play the sport, but then it comes down to a matter of choice. There are so many kinds of lacrosse helmets out there that it can seem daunting when it comes time to find the right one. There are a few key brands that make the best lacrosse helmets, and we highlighted those above.
If you select one of these helmets you can be sure that you’re getting a quality piece of equipment that is going to keep you protected during the game. If one of these helmets seems out of budget, it’s suggested that you consider the helmet to be an investment in your own safety and just fork over the cash.