The choice of motorcycle helmet is often dictated by the kind of bike that is being ridden. This is not just a technical specification involved, as it also depends on the kind of image the rider wishes to portray as a motorcyclist. The leather clad Hells Angel biker has a completely different look to a sleek sports motorcyclist. The choice of helmet is essential to complete the right image, as well as offer essential protection in the event of a crash.
Full face helmets as the name would suggest offer protection not just at the top, sides, and back of the head but across the jaw and cheeks too. The view port provides the rider with good vision and dust and eye strain is protected against from a clear visor which can slide up and down. Many motorcycle helmets of this kind are used on sports bikes which can travel at great speeds and have lightening acceleration.
Unlike half shell helmets where the face is exposed to the elements, and is predominately used by riders of Harley Davidson and chopper - bikes, full face protection helmets are normally well ventilated. This is not just offered under the chin, but many have vents built into them to make travelling cooler for the rider. A hot day and a heavy helmet can make for bad riding conditions, and it is essential that the helmets allow air to circulate as much as it can. Vented helmets are arguably essential for quality motorcycling especially on fast bikes which normally accompany a full face protected helmet.
Many state laws and indeed throughout the western world demand a helmet of some kind. This is to protect the rider as well as the country's health services. Accidents among riders can involve long term care which is obviously expensive, especially if brain damage has occurred. Though motorcycle helmets do not offer the best protection they can help prevent serious head injury. Defensive riding skills and good awareness and reactions are normally what prevents a rider from becoming a statistic.
Riders that sport half shell helmets are normally complying with the minimal requirements by law and their chosen image. Many who ride in a clan or sect like the Hells Angles would use a helmet of this kind. Though the motorcycle helmet offers some protection to the top, sides, and back of the head, it offers no protection for the face, or dust particles entering the eyes.