Helmets & Surfing

Discussion in 'All Discussions' started by nickzilla720, Jul 28, 2012.

  1. nickzilla720

    nickzilla720 Well-Known Member

    Jul 28, 2008
    Hey All,

    Heading back to central america again this week. We could be in store for a big, big swell. The kind that shuts down all the beaches and the reefs get pretty darn heavy. Last year we had a similar one and during my session at the peak of the swell, there were more than a couple of guys wearing helmets....and surfing well.

    I didn't get worked that hard that session but seeing guys wearing helmets not only seemed smart but made me feel spooked and vulnerable. I feel like I would charge harder knowing my noggin was protected. I played ice hockey growing up and know the values of a helmet.

    So my question is; I have a Pro Tec skate helmet. It's not specifically designed for water sports. I understand the padding may absorb more water and drip on my face. Any have any experience or tips in the situation??
  2. mexsurfer

    mexsurfer Well-Known Member

    Jul 14, 2008
    if it makes you surf better go for it. but i think an ice hockey helmet would work better than pro tec. ice hockey is sturdy, doesnt come off your head easy, and the foam doesnt absorb water. (i used to play hockey too)

  3. Zippy

    Zippy Well-Known Member

    Nov 16, 2007
    Wow, if I had to wear a helmet I would know that it was probably beyond my limits and I should be taking pictures.
  4. mexsurfer

    mexsurfer Well-Known Member

    Jul 14, 2008
    coco nogales wears a helmet when he surfs big puerto and hes been surfing there since he was kid!
  5. pyroarchy

    pyroarchy Well-Known Member

    May 6, 2012
    Helmet laws for the win.
  6. rlghdude

    rlghdude Well-Known Member

    Aug 19, 2009
    Unless you have a brain disorder that could cause you to die if you hit your head, you are a homosexual if you wear a helmet. There is no way around it.
  7. Swellinfo

    Swellinfo Administrator

    May 19, 2006
    There probably aren't too many people, if any, on this forum with experience wearing a helmet in the water. I'd do some web searching to see if you can find out what other surfer's are wearing. I have no experience with skate helmet, but I'd imagine snowboard helmets would be pretty water proof and would be a good fit. I know they are pretty expensive too. I know my mountain bike helmet wouldnt be good for water.
  8. elementdtlop

    elementdtlop Active Member

    May 6, 2012
    pro Tec makes a water helmet I use to kite surf that's awesome. never surfed anything big enough for it yet but its def a good idea esp for a reef. Even a heavy beach break really. I work in a hospital and I've seen a lot of traumatic brain injuries that could've been avoided if they were wearing one. If it means surfing another day or being alive for that matter why not. To righdude Look up a craniectomy and tell me how gay it makes you. that could be you if you hit your head and the intracranial pressure builds. Try surfing w a piece of your skull missing if you're not a veggie already anyway.
  9. rcarter

    rcarter Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2009
    You are a douche! If the OP wants to wear a helmet then that is fine. And would you call Gerry Lopez a homosexual?
  10. RhodyPedro

    RhodyPedro Well-Known Member

    Jan 24, 2012
    I've got a helemt as well as four of my friends. Some of us have kids, have had a history of concussions, and have been wearing helmets for years as we snowboard etc. Anyway, we all have our reasons and it's a personal choice. I'm not going to debate anyone here about whether they should wear one or not. I first looked into white water helmets but worried that they were too low in the neck area and would be an issue while arching and looking ahead. I went with a Gath. Shipping took a long time and I had to return it b/c it was too small. If you order a large, you will get a medium/large w/ a foam strip to remove as a way to adjust the size. This didn't work out for me b/c I wanted to wear it w/ a hood in winter and with the thicker strip during the warmer months. I dont even notice it when I'm wearing it. The foam doesn't absorb any water and the visor is a plus while looking out to sea and waiting for a set.
  11. Swellinfo

    Swellinfo Administrator

    May 19, 2006
    hitting your head on the bottom and getting knocked unconscious in the water isn't a good thing. No one used to wear snowboard helmets, but now pretty much everyone does... I wouldn't be surprised if you see more and more people wearing them at heavy shallow surf spots in the future.
  12. njsurfer42

    njsurfer42 Well-Known Member

    Nov 9, 2009


    wanna try that one again?
  13. njsurfer42

    njsurfer42 Well-Known Member

    Nov 9, 2009
    to the OP:

    check out gath helmets http://www.gathsports.com/
    i had one of their helmets for about 10 years...wore it snowboarding & bodysurfing, & it worked great...could hardly tell it was there & very streamlined. it died a noble death, doing what it was created to do-protect my noggin from rocks.
  14. surftb15

    surftb15 Well-Known Member

    Feb 25, 2012
    People wear helmets in Kauai all the time; however, mainly on the west side of the island Heavy waves, shallow reef, little room for error. If you get sucked over the falls, you end up washed up on the rocks and get ****ed up. Happened to me more then once.

    Since moving to the east coast, I haven't used a helmet though, there just isn't a need for one.
  15. yankee

    yankee Well-Known Member

    Sep 26, 2008
    No kiddn, eh. And I'd be right there, man, as the cold beer distribution assistant.

    I do a ton of road bike riding. The dorkiest looking thing in the world is a bike helmet. So, I never used to wear one. Y'know, too cool to go to school, I'll never crash, I'm in control, I'm a good rider, blah blah blah.

    Until I met a couple guys in my local pro shop who hit pavement through circumstances beyond anything they could control. And they had the scars on their noggins to prove it. (They got injured because they were out tooling around sans helmet. Now? Dudes are big helmet fans.) So, ok, I get a helmet. Couple weeks later, I take a turn 43 miles from home, at slow speed, on unseen small loose gravel & the wheels get jerked from under me so fast that I still can't believe it.

    Because my feet are clipped in, my head literally bounces off the pavement. Bleeding leg wasn't fun to ride the 43 back home with. The dent in the helmet, instead of my head? Priceless.

    BTW, there's the 50 million dollar idea for anyone with the talent: invent a cool-looking cycling helmet. 'Cause even though they protect & serve, the existing style of helmets still look cheesy & dorky.
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2012
  16. nickzilla720

    nickzilla720 Well-Known Member

    Jul 28, 2008
    Thanks for the responses guys. The spot is heavy and shallow. Hockey helmet does repel water better. However, the chin strap is a pretty weak snap type. Looking into an alternative strap but honestly my skate helmet is more comfortable and has a sturdier strap. I could imagine showing photos of myself surfing with a hockey helmet and getting a lot of laughs from my hockey buddies. Ha!

    I talked to a surfer friend of mine who used to be a semi-pro wakeboarder and he suffered a head injury once and wears one all the time.

    Honestly, I am stoked for my trip and don't give a crap what I look like. Never hurts to be prepared. If I get some sick photos with a helmet on I'll share them here. Plus then I can show them to Mom without her having an anxiety attack! haha
  17. yankee

    yankee Well-Known Member

    Sep 26, 2008
    $ 140.00 gets you into a nice Brine Lacrosse Helmet.
    Gotta luv the connection .... brine....ocean....
  18. coach

    coach Active Member

    Jul 4, 2012
    What ever happen to MAN UP!!!!!!! Surfs up!
  19. yankee

    yankee Well-Known Member

    Sep 26, 2008
    Is it possible that 'coach' is Gruvi's inbred cousin?
  20. Swellinfo

    Swellinfo Administrator

    May 19, 2006
    Its pretty dumb not to wear a helmet road biking... I hear about people getting into accidents all the time on the road bikes.