10 Best Water Sport helmets

10 Best Water Sports Helmets
Best Overall 🏆
Triple Eight THE Certified Sweatsaver Helmet for Skateboarding, BMX, and Roller Skating, Black Glossy, X-Small / Small
Best Runner Up 🥈
Vihir Adult Water Sports Helmet with Ears - Helmet Men Women for Skateboard Boating Surfing Kayaking Canoeing Sailing
Third Place
Tontron Adult Kayaking Helmet (Gloss Black Fiber Forest, Medium)
Triple Eight Sweatsaver Liner Skateboarding Helmet
Vihir Adult Water Sports Helmet
Tontron TC-WH01 Adult Water Sports Helmet
Features
  • Fits a large range of adult head sizes
  • High-density Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene thermoplastic polymer outer-shell
  • Moisture-wicking Sweatsaver Halo Water Liner with 3-layer foam
  • Adjustable chin strap with side-draw buckle
  • 3 months manufacturer warranty
  • CE EN 1385:2012 Certified Standard for Water Sports
Features
  • High-density ABS thermoplastic polymer outer shell with Chimei 709 material
  • Cold-resistant, impact-absorbing EVA foam liner
  • Customizable chin strap
  • 11 vents for proper ventilation around the head
  • Fits a large range of adult head sizes
  • 100% money-back manufacturer guarantee
  • Variety of colors to choose from
  • CE EN 1385:2012 Certified Standard for Water Sports
Features
  • Lightweight
  • High-density ABS thermoplastic polymer outer-shell
  • Impact-absorbing EVA foam liner
  • Customizable chin strap
  • 11 vents for proper ventilation around the head
  • 3 head-size options: large, medium, and small
  • European CE EN 1385 water sports standard.
Best Overall 🏆
Triple Eight THE Certified Sweatsaver Helmet for Skateboarding, BMX, and Roller Skating, Black Glossy, X-Small / Small
Triple Eight Sweatsaver Liner Skateboarding Helmet
Features
  • Fits a large range of adult head sizes
  • High-density Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene thermoplastic polymer outer-shell
  • Moisture-wicking Sweatsaver Halo Water Liner with 3-layer foam
  • Adjustable chin strap with side-draw buckle
  • 3 months manufacturer warranty
  • CE EN 1385:2012 Certified Standard for Water Sports
Best Runner Up 🥈
Vihir Adult Water Sports Helmet with Ears - Helmet Men Women for Skateboard Boating Surfing Kayaking Canoeing Sailing
Vihir Adult Water Sports Helmet
Features
  • High-density ABS thermoplastic polymer outer shell with Chimei 709 material
  • Cold-resistant, impact-absorbing EVA foam liner
  • Customizable chin strap
  • 11 vents for proper ventilation around the head
  • Fits a large range of adult head sizes
  • 100% money-back manufacturer guarantee
  • Variety of colors to choose from
  • CE EN 1385:2012 Certified Standard for Water Sports
Third Place
Tontron Adult Kayaking Helmet (Gloss Black Fiber Forest, Medium)
Tontron TC-WH01 Adult Water Sports Helmet
Features
  • Lightweight
  • High-density ABS thermoplastic polymer outer-shell
  • Impact-absorbing EVA foam liner
  • Customizable chin strap
  • 11 vents for proper ventilation around the head
  • 3 head-size options: large, medium, and small
  • European CE EN 1385 water sports standard.
Table of Contents
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    Injuries sustained in the head during watersports activities are one of the most dangerous and the causes of the vast majority of recorded deaths on the water. These injuries are often sustained through hitting unanticipated things. 

    Rocks, for instance, are often submerged in water at a depth that may not be easily seen from on top of the water, so any dwindling of your kayak or canoe, or board due to rising wind can wreak havoc if you lose balance and fall into the same water. 

    Also hitting the head with trees, tree roots, and lumps can render one unconscious, leading to the danger of drowning.

    Our Top 10 Picks at a Glance

    Therefore, the need for water sporters to always wear water sports helmets cannot be overemphasized, whether they’re beginners or not. 

    Although, sadly, some might say it is not necessary when you’re on slow-moving water, or when the weather is “cool” with no excessive storm. They’re mistaken because there may be unforeseen situations they never even considered. 

    For instance, what if the weather changes all of a sudden? Or there’s accidental tripping over? It is good to not expect accidents but it is wise to always be proactive.

    If you decide to go for a helmet for the protection of your head on your next water adventure, then you’re on the right page to find some of the best available water helmets currently on the market.

    In this article, we have reviewed 10 of these helmets through their amazing features and what customers have to say about them.

    1. Triple Eight Sweatsaver Liner Skateboarding Helmet

    Triple Eight Sweatsaver Liner Skateboarding Helmet

    Features

    • Fits a large range of adult head sizes
    • High-density Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene thermoplastic polymer outer-shell
    • Moisture-wicking Sweatsaver Halo Water Liner with 3-layer foam
    • Adjustable chin strap with side-draw buckle
    • 3 months manufacturer warranty
    • CE EN 1385:2012 Certified Standard for Water Sports

    The Triple Eight Sweatsaver Liner right here is amazement in the world of water sports helmets. Why? Each feature comes with its versatility. Water sporter of any size can use this helmet, whether adults or youths. Even kids can use it.

    This is because not only does it come in a variety of colors, but it also comes in multiple sizes to pick from XS fits 20.1–20.5 in (51–52 cm), S fits 20.6–21.3 in (52–54 cm), M fits 21.4–22 in (54–56 cm), L fits 22.1–22.9 in (56–58 cm), XL fits 23–24 in (58–61 cm), XXL fits 24-25 in (60–62 cm). You can know the exact size for you by taking measurements around your head using a soft tape rule or string.

    Moreover, the outer hull is molded using a high-density ABS thermoplastic polymer that meets the European water sports safety standard: EN 1385:2012, while the subshell is designed using an impact-absorbing EVA protective foam.

    The Triple Eight Sweatsaver Liner features, perhaps, above all a moisture-wicking Sweatsaver Halo Water Liner with 3-layer foam to give stink-free protection. 

    There’s also an adjustable chin strip with a side-draw buckle. To cap it all, there’s a manufacturer’s limited warranty of 180 days on the product.

    2. Vihir Adult Water Sports Helmet

    Vihir Adult Water Sports Helmet

    Features

    • High-density ABS thermoplastic polymer outer shell with Chimei 709 material
    • Cold-resistant, impact-absorbing EVA foam liner
    • Customizable chin strap
    • 11 vents for proper ventilation around the head
    • Fits a large range of adult head sizes
    • 100% money-back manufacturer guarantee
    • Variety of colors to choose from
    • CE EN 1385:2012 Certified Standard for Water Sports

    The Vihir Adult Outdoor Water Sports Helmet is a highly ranked head protection due to its excellent performance over time. It is made of a tough ABS outside cover using Chimei 709 material, providing impact protection for your head.

    And on the inside, there’s a cold-resistant EVA foam, with a flexible waterproof lining that gives you optimum comfort while wearing.

    There are two detachable ear pads including protecting your ears from scratch without inhibiting your hearing. Just ensure that you keep the ears safely when you remove them to avoid loss.

    The chin clasp of the helmet is made with strong lines with webbings to help hold it in place when worn. Moreso, the helmet is built to make your head experience adequate ventilation with 11 venting channels divided in the front and back.

    Fresh air is drawn in through the front channel pushing the mist air already around your head out through the back.

    Moreover, the helmet has a convenient adjustable strap system that makes it fit your head in case it is a bit smaller or bigger when you wear it without mounting pressure on your head. You also have red, gray, black, blue, white, and bright color options to choose from

    Another interesting thing about this helmet is its versatility. It is suitable for all water sporting activities like boating, surfing, kayaking, fishing, and more. You can also use it for off-water activities like snowing, skateboarding, etc.

    The 304 stainless steel rivets on the helmet have been tested with salt spray and have passed, making them safe for both fresh and saltwater use. Plus, there’s a 3-month 100% money-back manufacturer guarantee on the helmet to assure you of the competence.

    3. Tontron TC-WH01 Adult Water Sports Helmet

    Tontron TC-WH01 Adult Water Sports Helmet

    Features

    • Lightweight
    • High-density ABS thermoplastic polymer outer-shell
    • Impact-absorbing EVA foam liner
    • Customizable chin strap
    • 11 vents for proper ventilation around the head
    • 3 head-size options: large, medium, and small
    • European CE EN 1385 water sports standard.

    The Tontron TC-WH01 Adult Water Sports Helmet is a stylish yet tough head protector with an outer shell made from high-density Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) and a sub-shell from an impact-absorbing EVA foam liner.

    There are ear covers provided for protecting both ears from scratches without inhibiting your hearing. The ear covers are detachable and can be kept safe after every use.

    The helmet weighing just about 0.88 pounds features an adjustable back of the head, and has three size options viz, Large (21.7-24.0in) | (55-61cm). Medium (20.9-23.2in) | (53-59cm). Small (20.1-22.0in) | (51-56cm).

    On the helmet are 11 air vents for proper air circulation around your head. Moreso, it meets the European CE EN 1385 water sports standard.

    4. NRS Havoc Livery Whitewater Helmet

    NRS Havoc Livery Whitewater Helmet

    Features

    • A ratchet-adjust mechanism for quick fit adjustment
    • Lightweight
    • High-density ABS thermoplastic polymer outer-shell
    • Impact-absorbing EVA foam liner
    • Customizable chin strap
    • 6 vents for proper ventilation around the head
    • Fits a large range of adult head sizes
    • CE EN 1385:2012 Certified Standard for Water Sports

    Storm on the water with your water vessel in the helmet that suits all your surfing needs, the NRS Havoc Livery Helmet. The lightweight yet tough whitewater helmet is designed to perfectly fit many adult head sizes.

    You don’t have to worry about strength because the outer shell is molded from Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS). EVA foam liner and fit pads are also included in the sub-shell, to cushion the toughness of the outer shell on your head. 

    The pads are attached to the inner shell to keep them from coming off in the event you’re paddling through rough waters.

    The helmet is further equipped with a customizable chin strap that helps keep the helmet in place through any storm. There’s also an adjustable ratchet system that assists you in easily adjusting the fit by simply turning the knob.

    To make room for more than enough air circulation around your head, the NRS Havoc Livery whitewater helmet comes with 6 vents, draining water and excess hot air out of your head fast.

    The only downside of this helmet is the absence of a protective visor for the eyes and face. Besides this, it is nothing short of excellent.

    5. WRSI Current Water Sports Helmet

    WRSI Current Water Sports Helmet

    Features

    • Auto-adjusting IRS (Interconnect Retention System)
    • Triple-layered Impact-resistant: ABS- outer-shell; EVA foam liner; polyurethane sub-shell
    • Removable and cleanable liner
    • 3 air vents available for enhanced air circulation
    • Exclusive adaptable O-Brace Harness
    • European CE EN 1385 water sports standard.

    Here comes another reliable creation from the Whitewater Research and Safety Institute (WRSI), distributed in collaboration with the Northwest River Supplies (NRS).

    This high-impact-resistance open-face helmet with outer-shell molded from high-density ABS. On the hard shell are multiple vents for adequate air circulation and water drainage.

    The inner part on the other hand is made of an EVA foam liner and a polyurethane subshell to lessen collision impact. To further foster comfortable head-fitting especially when wearing is prolonged, a padded liner and an adjustable O-Brace Harness are included.

    Furthermore, like other WRSI helmets, the Current Water Sports Helmet is equipped with the unique Interconnect Retention System for better hold and auto-adjustment under hydraulic forces.

    6. 3M™ SecureFit™ Safety Helmet, X5014VX-ANSI

    3M™ SecureFit™ Safety Helmet, X5014VX-ANSI

    Features

    • Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) outer-shell
    • EVA foam liner
    • 6-point adjustable ratchet suspension
    • 3M Scotchlite reflector
    • EN 12492 and ANSI Z89.1 certified standard

    This is a safety helmet design inspired by height. It is a special helmet with a high level of toughness that makes it

    not only suitable for whitewater use but also for manufacturing, telecommunication, construction, and any activity that is height-related. 

    The outer-shell toughness is made possible by the Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) material used. This toughness, however, is cushioned by an EVA foam liner that ensures a comfortable fit on the head.

    It features a Pressure Diffusion System that helps to reduce the pressure felt by the forehead when worn. Also included in the design is a 6-point adjustable ratchet suspension to allow you to customize how high and tight you want the helmet to sit on your head.

    To ensure good ventilation around your head, air vents are provided on the sides and back. Moreso, a proprietary UV indicator feature is added to the helmet to alert you of the need to change it due to UV exposure. 

    It also comes with a 3M Scotchlite reflector, so you can stay visible to other whitewater paddlers, especially at night.

    This helmet passed all impacts and penetration tests and therefore met both the ANSI Z89.1. and the EN12492 standard performance requirements, making it one of the best to put money on on the market.

    7. WRSI Trident Composite Kayak Helmet

    WRSI Trident Composite Kayak Helmet

    Features

    • Adaptable O-Brace Harness for a comfortable fit
    • Impact-resistance carbon-composite outer shell design
    • Interconnected Retention Mechanism for roll-back prevention
    • Combines EVA foam liner and polyurethane for the inner part
    • Brim guard for eyes and face protection from rain and sunlight.
    • CE EN 1385:2012 certified

    If what you’re looking for is sleek coupled with strength, then you have your helmet in the WRSI’s Trident Composite. It delivers excellent performance in style even under the toughest of water conditions.

    Made with a durable carbon composite, the outer body can withstand multiple accidental knocks and impacts, whether you’re out to enjoy a simple whitewater adventure or you’re hitting rough waters up to Class IV. 

    Like most WRSI helmets, the inner part of the WRSI Trident Composite helmet that comes in contact with your head is designed with a combination of EVA protective foam padding and polyurethane to provide improved knock-resistance.

    Moreso, you can easily remove the padded liner in case you need to wash it. Moreover, the helmet is equipped with a brim for good coverage and protection of your head, face, and eyes against rain and UV rays from the sun. 

    You can achieve a better comfortable fit on your head, thanks to its O-Brace Harness. And in case you suddenly experience a sudden jack on the water, the presence of an Interconnected Retention System under hydraulic forces guarantees prevention against roll-back.

    8. SANDBOX Classic 2.0 Low Rider Helmet

    SANDBOX Classic 2.0 Low Rider Helmet

    Features

    • Impact-absorbing ABS outer-shell and EVA foam liner
    • Simple and special visor helmet
    • Double sets of fit pads for comfortable head-fit
    • Stealth vents for proper air and moisture removal
    • Comes with a user manual and sticker sheet
    • CE EN 1385:2012 Certified for Water Sports

    The SANDBOX Classic 2.0 is a stylish helmet that offers excellent protection for the head against injuries during any of your loved water sports. It features an ABS thermoplastic polymer outer shell with an EVA foam liner for impact absorption in case of an accidental hit.

    Whether you’re canoeing, kayaking, wakeboarding, or whitewater rafting, you know that you are protected from head injuries while wearing the SANDBOX Classic 2.0 Low Rider Helmet. 

    This great-looking helmet features SANDBOX’s signature brim and offers comfortable protection. Also in the helmet is a double set of fit pads of varying thickness, included to provide an extra better fit on your head. 

    The pads are made using a high-quality, quick-dry polyester spandex material for better comfort.

    Furthermore, there are air vents privately installed at the front and back of the helmet, like every other model of the SANDBOX 2.0 Classic, to provide proper air circulation around your head. 

    Fresh air enters through the front into the EVA subshell and pushes the existing heated air and moisture out through the rear vents.

    The only drawback of this helmet is that its weight seems to be relatively heavier on the head than other helmets in its category, and it does not come with ear covers. Besides this, all you’ll find is a truckload of positivity.

    9. WRSI Current Pro Kayak Helmet

    WRSI Current Pro Kayak Helmet

    Features

    • Removable ear covers for protection and extra warmth
    • Sleek brim guard for protecting the eyes and face from sun rays
    • Adaptable O-Brace Harness and Interconnect Retention System for a comfortable fit
    • Triple-layered impact-absorbing shell design
    • Removable and washable liner
    • European CE EN 1385:2012 Certified Standard for Water Sports

    As an upgrade on the existing WRSI Current Water Sports Helmet, the Current Pro comes with better amazing safety features in addition to all the features of its predecessor.

    Like the WRSI Current, it sports a solid triple-layered combination of a high-density ABS outer shell, an inner EVA foam liner, and a polyurethane sub-shell. This combination provides excellent impact absorption as well as ensures comfort.

    Also like its predecessor, it combines the power of the O-Brace Harness and Interconnect Retention System to provide better head-fit and safety under the influence of hydraulic forces.

    One major distinction between the Current helmet and the Current Pro helmet is the added brim guard for protection from rain and UV rays from the sun. 

    Another is the addition of detachable ear covers for both ears for protection against fast-moving waves as well as for extra warmth.

    10. SANDBOX Legend Low Rider Helmet

    SANDBOX Legend Low Rider Helmet

    Features

    • Simple design with a tough outer shell and soft EVA foam for head-comfort
    • 11 air vents for proper ventilation
    • Class IV EN 1385:2012 certified

    Top of the table among the helmets for navigating the toughest of rapids is the SANDBOX Legend Low Rider.

    The outer cover is made with a strong ABS for reliable resistance against impact, and the inner part is padded with an EVA  foam to prevent your head from discomfort as well as from shock.

    Moreover, this helmet comes with a  simply unique design featuring 11 air vents included for better ventilation around your head. In addition, you can adjust the helmet in 18 different ways to fit your head perfectly, thanks to built-in multi-fit pads of varying thickness, a common feature of many SANDBOX Sports helmets.

    Two sets of pads, made of quick-dry polyester fabric, are included to help you easily prevent moisture from getting to your face

    The only drawback is that it does not feature ear covers, but you can purchase them separately for better protection for your ears during cold weather.

    Types of Water Helmets

    Many manufacturers of water helmets exist with several designs for water sport activities like kayaking, surfing, paddle boarding, and many more. However, these designs are categorized into just three types. 

    The type you acquire will be subject to the activity you’re going for, how skillful you’re in water sports space, the location, and how dangerous the activity is.

    Half-Cut Helmets

    This is the simplest of the three helmet types. It is designed such that it covers the top of your head, the sides, and the back leaving the ears open. 

    Hence the half-cut name. It is popular among users who participate in water activities whose danger levels are ranked ‘low’. Examples of such low-danger activities are canoeing, recreational kayaking, and fishing.

    Full-Cut Helmets

    The Full-Cut helmet type is almost like the half-cut but with a little improvement. Unlike the half-cut, it comes with a cover for the ears in addition to the top and back of the head. 

    This is a better option because it offers protection when you are enjoying the water in cold conditions. Moreso, in the case of tip-over during whitewater sports, the fully covering, Full-Cut helmet offers excellent protection from cold.

    Full-Face Helmets

    Exactly as the name suggests, the Full-Face Helmet is designed to provide maximum coverage for the whole head. It can be related to the full cover seen on motor bikers. It is usually tough and is recommended if you’re anticipating having full fun on up to Level IV whitewater rapids

    Is a Water Sports Helmet Important for me?

    No law in the United States outrightly spells out the illegality of not wearing a water sports helmet. Your use of a helmet when you go on a water sport adventure, therefore, depends on how much you feel the need.

    And this depends on various factors such as your watersports skills, the water size, weather forecast, and expected level of danger, not to mention but a few.

    At this point, you must understand that the helmets used on motorbikes and bicycles are quite different. While those are designed for head and brain protection against hard surfaces in case of a fall, water helmets are designed to protect against submerged rocks, logs, trees, and tree roots.

    Moreover, there are always branches of trees extending slowly along the path of slow-moving waters that need to be looked out for. And in case you accidentally hit them, your helmet may be what saves you from the impact.

    Accidents are often unexpected, so need to be planned against. Another reason to consider the purchase of a helmet is to prevent the fatal effect of an accidental collision between vessels that are out of control in fast-moving waters.

    Being proactive by buying the best water sports helmet can save you a lot of money, time, troubles, and ultimately, the risk of fatal injury and death on the water in the long run.

    The final choice is yours to make. And we’re sure you’ll make the right one.

    Factors To Consider When Buying A Water Helmet

    EN 1385 Helmet Certification

    There is no existing standard certification in the US for helmets used in various water sports, however, there’s a recommended standard by the Consumer Product Service Commission which is the EN-1385. 

    The EN-1385 recognizes that drowning after an accidental knock on the head is the cause of most whitewater sports deaths, and so provides helmet certification for users water sporting on rapids between Classes I and IV.

    Class IV is the maximum certification because conditions in fast-moving waters cannot be predicted and can become extreme at any time, therefore, there’s no guarantee for your safety.

    Helmet Fit

    There’s no use for a helmet that doesn’t fit the head that wears it as it defies the main purpose. A helmet that is too big will not stay firmly in your head and may fall off when the water current rises, exposing your head to danger. 

    Likewise, a helmet too small for your head will be too tight, make you feel uncomfortable under it, and may even cause you to not wear it when you need it the most.

    Ensure you buy a helmet that fits your head perfectly. Fortunately, some of the helmets we mention on our list come with adjustable chin buckles that make them fit any size of the head. Look for these types and save yourself from discomfort while enjoying the waterways.

    Helmet Retention

    When you have finally secured a water sports helmet that fits your head, another thing to consider is how well you can sustain it on your head when you hit the waters. 

    We recommend that you go for a helmet that not only fits your head firmly but also comes with a chin strap for proper retention.

    In addition, ensure the strap is strong enough to last long because if it snaps quickly, the helmet is as good as not having any strap and will fall off immediately after you start to drift on the water.

    Helmet Dryness and Care

    The Dryness

    Without much argument, the primary purpose of a water sports helmet is to protect the head by reducing accidental knocks and impacts, hence, the tough ABS outer shell.

    However, to enjoy a long time on the water, you need to feel comfortable around your head in the helmet that is why moisture-wicking paddings are added in most helmets to quickly see to the removal of water that might find its way into the head.

    Also, vent holes are included to further improve ventilation by letting in the fresh air, pushing out heated air and moisture around the head in the process.

    The Care

    When water finds its way into the helmet, you must ensure that after each adventure, the helmet is dried to avoid water rusting the metals connecting the straps in the inner part.

    If you’re having your adventure at sea, there is a high possibility that the metals will be exposed to corrosion by saltwater. Therefore, ensure you wash your helmet with fresh water and air-dry after every use.

    Always check out the integrity of the straps before setting hitting the water. Look out for cuts and frays, and draw the straps out. Careful, not with full strength so it doesn’t get the weakness it didn’t have before. Although it’s better to lose it off-water than on it.

    In addition, check for the certification. The US doesn’t have it but we use the European EN1385 Certified Standard. With any helmet having this certification, you’re good to go!

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