What's the Deal: Bike helmet buying guide

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A helmet can save your life, but only about 20 percent of adults wear one. Consumer Reports tested bike helmets and has some great recommendations. (WPVI)

A helmet can save your life, but only about 20 percent of adults wear one. Consumer Reports tested bike helmets and has some great recommendations.

Elliot Scott loves biking. But two years ago, he collided with a fellow biker at about 30 miles an hour, sending him flying through the air.

"The impact was hard. Many of the bones broke in my body, and my head did come down rather hard on the pavement," said Scott.

Consumer Reports tested 14 adult-size helmets this year to see how well they resist impact and absorb force.

The chin straps and buckles were also tested for stretching or breaking.

Consumer Reports checked for ventilation, too, by judging airflow at high speed.

Some of the helmets have MIPS technology, a special lining which claims to reduce force when impacted at an angle. Consumer Reports tested those claims, and says MIPS may lower the risk of traumatic brain injury.

"We found it can reduce rotational force by 25-43 percent," said Rich Handel, Consumer Reports.

Consumer Reports recommends three MIPS-equipped helmets: the Scott Arx Plus for $125; the Bell Gage for $195; and the Bell Draft for $60.

"We also found some very good helmets without MIPS," said Handel.

Consumer Reports Best Buys include the Cannondale Quick for $40; the Bell Draft, also for $40 dollars; and the Schwinn Intercept for $22.

It's essential to always wear a helmet. Just ask Elliot.

"If I didn't have my helmet on, I am pretty sure I would have been killed," said Scott.

For maximum effectiveness, make sure your helmet fits properly. It should be snug and the straps should make a Y around the ears.

Fore more information on buying the right helmet and making sure it fits correctly click here.

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