Ski, Snowboard | Nov 17, 2021

Ski helmet size & fit: How to find the perfect helmet

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Let’s face it: No matter how good of a skier you are: Falls happen to everyone. And they can end quite badly if you don’t protect your most vital asset – your brain. That’s why ski helmets are an essential safety item for every winter sports enthusiast, whether you’re into skiing, snowboarding, freeriding or ski touring.

However, finding the perfect ski helmet is not just about choosing your favourite colour. More than anything else, it’s about finding a model that properly fits. Are you looking for a helmet but unsure how to find the right size? Don’t worry! Together with the ski helmet experts at ATOMIC we have compiled some tips for finding the perfect ski helmet.

Why should I wear a ski helmet?

The number one reason why you should get a ski helmet is simple: safety. Studies have shown that ski helmets can reduce the risk of head injury by about 30 to 60 per cent. In addition, there is a number of other reasons to wear a helmet on the slopes:

  • Helmets keep your head warm.
  • They help keep your goggles in place.
  • They help keep the snow out of your eyes.
  • They can be used to express your personality by adding stickers or designs.

Do I need a specific helmet for skiing, snowboarding or ski touring?


More than anything, choosing a type of helmet is a question of aesthetics as there’s no real technical difference between, say, a ski helmet and a snowboard helmet. However, there are a few convenient features and properties that make certain products more suitable for certain disciplines.

Helmets for …

  • … resort skiing: are versatile and boast different features (adjustable ventilation, audio system, etc.)
  • … backcountry skiing: are lightweight and well-ventilated
  • … ski touring: are ultralight and well-ventilated, some of them complying with the climbing and mountaineering standard (EN 12492)
  • … freestyle skiing: are stylish and reinforced
  • … Alpine racing: are aerodynamic and sturdy

How do I find the right size helmet?

Before choosing a helmet, it’s vital to measure your head. Don’t worry, it’s easy! All you need to do is run a tape measure around it. To do so, position it about one centimetre above your eyebrows and ears. Keep it level and measure around the largest part of your head (not at your hairline) to determine the circumference of your head.

Our tip: The tape measure should be snug but not too tight. Once you have determined the circumference of your head, simply check the size chart below to find out your perfect helmet size.

By the way: Did you know that ATOMIC’s Live Fit and 360° Fit Systems allow you to adjust the helmet to your individual head size, giving you a custom fit?

Are there differences in ski helmet sizes for women, children and men?

While kids‘ helmets usually run from size S to M, adult helmets are available in sizes from XS to XL. In the case of ATOMIC helmets, children’s helmets are available for head circumferences between 46 and 55 centimetres. Adult helmets cover the range between 51 to 65 centimetres.

The big advantage: Thanks to their 360° Fit System and Live Fit, every helmet can be individually adjusted to your head shape.


How can I test the fit of my ski helmet?

Your helmet should feel snug but not tight. If there’s still room to rock it back and forth, it is too loose. Adjust the size system so that the helmet doesn’t shift. The good news: ATOMIC’s size system is also height-adjustable. This gives you a perfect fit and makes your helmet extra compatible with your goggles.

A quick test to see if your ski helmet fits is to put it on with the chin strap and tightening system open. In a next step, adjust the chin strap so that the helmet sits snugly. Make sure that you can still breathe and swallow easily. Use the size system to adjust the helmet to your individual head shape. Shake your head slightly to see if the helmet stays in place.

NB: Don’t max out the tightening system of your helmet! With a properly fitting and comfortable helmet, the system should neither be fully tightened nor fully loosened.

What about helmets with adjustable fit?


As we said before, ATOMIC offers ski helmets that can be individually adjusted to your head shape. This not only gives you a better fit but also more comfort and increased safety. Most of their adjustable ski helmets feature the following two technologies:

  • 360° Fit System: This system lets you fine-tune your helmet from every angle using the dial at the back. The system is also height-adjustable to give you 100 per cent customised comfort on your ski day.
  • Live Fit: Live Fit pads are a wide band of memory foam that adapts to your head shape. The soft, cushioned layer provides you with all-day comfort and an added layer of protection.

What should I wear under my ski helmet?

The truth is that wearing a ski hat underneath your helmet is more about fashion than function. All good-quality ski helmets should be lined and insulated enough to keep you warm. For instance, all of ATOMIC’s all-mountain helmets, such as the ATOMIC Savor AMID Visor HD boast perfect ear fit, making it unnecessary to wear a hat underneath.

Their 3D-molded ear pads feature a special design for even more comfort and a better fit. They fully cover your ears, providing you with extra warmth and protection. The Merino 3M™ X-Static lining is a high-end lining made from merino wool with antibacterial and anti-odour properties. It regulates your body’s temperature, keeping you warm on freezing days and cool on warmer days.

For an extra touch of style, you can also use ATOMIC’s Four helmets, such as the Four AMID, without a lining.


Did you know that INTERSPORT Rent not only offers skis and snowboards for rent? At our many rental shops, you can also find a vast selection of accessories – including high-quality ski helmets to keep you safe and warm in the mountains. Your advantage: The RENTertainers on site will be happy to help you choose the right size helmet. As true winter sports experts, they know all about finding the perfect fit.

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