HOW IMPORTANT IS your helmet choice? For triathletes the answer to that question is “critical.” Not only does a helmet need to protect your head in the case of an accident, but for those looking for some added performance, an aero helmet can improve times by minutes.
Triathletes used to have to make a choice between an aerodynamic helmet and one that would provide more ventilation. Which is why, at a race like the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii, with its scorching hot temperatures, you’d hardly ever see an aero helmet a decade ago. Those days are done thanks to some innovative technology that’s hit the market, though – now you can get a helmet that offers lots of air flow to keep your head cool that’s still pretty aerodynamic. Those looking for Tour de Francelike performance will likely still want to lean towards some of the true aero, tear-shaped models available, while those gearing up for a hot Ironman might lean towards a model with more vents that might give up a bit of its aero qualities in order to remain a bit cooler.
One feature that has begun to appear on more helmets over the last few years is called MIPS – Multi-directional Impact Protection System – which provides added protection by allowing the head to rotate slightly on impact. We reviewed one helmet that offers MIPS (the Giro Synthe), while a few others on our list are available with MIPS if you want. Luckily enough none of our reviewers were able to test the benefits of the MIPS technology during our tests, but we certainly applaud the addition of even more safety features to many of these tri-friendly helmets. Bollé One
You can dial in the aerodynamics and ventilation with the Bollé One thanks to the 31 vents that can be covered with specific aero shells to create the best combination of air flow and speed, depending on your event needs. The helmet comes with two different linings for either summer or winter use and has a “sunglass garage” which provides the perfect perch for your glasses if you decide to take them off during a ride. Comfort is also dialed in thanks to the click-to-fit system that keeps the Bollé One firmly on your head.