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How is a climbing helmet different than a skate boarding helmet?
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By Siberia
From Birmingham, AL
Jul 30, 2012
What the title says. Any safety reasons not use a skateboarding helmet?

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By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Jul 30, 2012
Bocan
Considering they used motocross back in the day I'm sure you can use it no worries. BUT I would imagine maybe climbing specific are probably more reinforced on the top. Don't have too many direct drops on the top of your head in skating.

But I'm sure there are nuances like headlamp clips that are climber specific.

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By JoeR
From Eugene, OR
Jul 30, 2012
weight

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By Mike McKinnon
From Golden, CO
Jul 30, 2012
Bunny pancake
Siberia wrote:
What the title says. Any safety reasons not use a skateboarding helmet?


Nothing really except weight & ventilation. They are both meant to protect your head. When I take my kids our climbing, one uses her bike helmet and the other uses her skateboarding helmet. They are pink with graphics so they like them more than my plain petzls :)

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By Andy Librande
From Denver, CO
Jul 30, 2012
Me in the Buddha Cave at crumblewood a while ago.
I believe there is actually quite a bit of difference, I really don't know what and how climbing fits in the mold, but I know that certain helmet manufacturers for snowboarding/skiing/biking/skateboarding can't market it as a helmet until it meets certain guidelines for impact. I believe the Consumer Product Safety Commission makes the rules and I bet that climbing is treated on a different standard.

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By Julius Beres
From Boulder, CO
Jul 30, 2012
Rewritten
Siberia wrote:
What the title says. Any safety reasons not use a skateboarding helmet?


My guess is a skateboarding helmet would be safe, but heavy.

There are some differences.

I believe skateboarding helmets are meant to withstand multiple impacts, while that is not a requirement for climbing helmets. (Climbing helmets are similar to bike helmets in that they are designed to withstand one impact... some of the harder helmets might withstand more, but certainly the light ones are made for one big impact).

So, that would mean the skateboarding helmet is at least as safe, but there is a weight cost for that feature.

Also, most climbing helmets are made to primarily protect against rock fall, whereas skateboarding helmets protect for impacts from all angles...
Again, this would make the skateboarding helmet safe, but heavier.

I think if you are a beginner or taking a beginner out and they don't have a helmet, a boarding helmet would be fine (certainly better than nothing), but because of the weight and bulk, if the user gets into climbing, they would probably want to replace the helmet with one made for climbing.

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By mattm
From TX
Jul 31, 2012
Grande Grotto
Climbing helmets have to have a certain amount of puncture resistance on top. They drop a metal cone, spike side first onto a climbing helmet and it can't make contact with your head.

Climbing helmets also must limit the amount of straight down force created by an object on the head/neck.

Doubt there's a puncture spec fora skate helmet. Most if not all falls on a bike/skate etc helmet will be side impacts I'd suspect.

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By Eric Krantz
From Black Hills
Jul 31, 2012
smoke break, pitch 5 or 6 (or 7??) of Dark Shadows
Skating/biking/motorcycle helmets have foam which compresses thereby absorbing energy in the impact with... flat concrete. They are made to protect your head from hitting concrete. Single use only. Once the foam is compressed, they are no good.

Climbing helmets, as stated above, are meant to protect your head from intrusion of a pointed object (small rock) through the helmet. They have no foam would be less effective than a skating helmet if you wiped it on concrete.

In other words, a skating helmet is made to protect your brains during a very high rate of acceleration (such as when coming into contact with an immovable object, like the sidewalk). Kind of like a screamer.... while a climbing helmet is more like armor.

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By Tom Grummon
From Golden, CO
Jul 31, 2012
Top of Montezuma's Tower
Just look at a skateboarding helmet vs a climbing helmet and you will see the difference.

My climbing helmet (and the 4 hard hats I own) have a lot of padding (or suspension) on the top, where as the skateboarding helmet has very little up top.

Climbing helmets (and hardhats) are designed to protect the head from mainly falling objects ,and to a lesser extent, lateral impacts. Where as skateboarding helmets are meant to protect you from all sorts of impacts.

I'm too lazy too look up the certification requirements of a climbing helmet and a skateboarding helmet (you can most definitely find them with a Google search) but I can tell you my climbing helmets have way more foam up top top then many skateboarding helmets.

A skateboarding helmet will give you at least a little protection, but really get a real climbing helmet if you value your brain, The two are designed for completely different impacts.

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By Scott Jones
From boulder, co
Jul 31, 2012
-
the headlamp clips will make a big difference if you're considering doing longer routes

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By jarthur
From Westminster, CO
Jul 31, 2012
My dogs got ups yo!
I wore my black Pro-Tec skateboarding helmet up Ruper's Crack one day. Everytime my belayer looked down on me he said he was blinded because of how shiny it was. That's at least one problem with wearing one.

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By Gary N
From Durango, CO
Jul 31, 2012
Profile pic taken at Muir Beach.
I used my skateboard helmet for a long time before I could afford to get one-a-dem fancy climbing ones.

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By Rob Lipinski
Jul 31, 2012
Eric Krantz wrote:
They have no foam would be less effective than a skating helmet if you wiped it on concrete


My mammut helmet has a foam top as does a few models of BD and other helmets i can think of...

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By Finn the Human
From The Land of Ooo
Jul 31, 2012
Mathematical!
Andy Librande wrote:
I believe there is actually quite a bit of difference, I really don't know what and how climbing fits in the mold, but I know that certain helmet manufacturers for snowboarding/skiing/biking/skateboarding can't market it as a helmet until it meets certain guidelines for impact. I believe the Consumer Product Safety Commission makes the rules and I bet that climbing is treated on a different standard.


Bern helmets use a softer "Brock" foam which is designed to handle multiple lower-force impacts, as opposed to harder one-time-use EPS hard foam. The Brock foam doesn't pass the tests for action sports head protection, but I've heard it reduces the chance of getting a concussion when you do knock your dome.

Anyway, it's pretty much irrelevant when it comes to climbing. I'm sure either type of foam would be fine.

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By Larry S
Jul 31, 2012
The wife and I road-trippin on the Connie.
I'd use (and have used) one over no helmet at all, but their design goals are very different. The "skateboard/freestyle" helmet is meant to protect your head all the way around, from forehead to neck, from impacts of you falling on blunt objects - usually on the front side or back, not from the top. They are usually padded all the way around w/ a layer of impact absorbing polystyrene foam and a second layer of open cell foam, and, in my experience, the plastic shell on the outside is thicker. The one notable thing is that most generic freestyle helmets have hole pattern on the top, small stones or stuff could possibly go right thru those.

Climbing specific helmets do not have straight thru holes like this on the top as all they really care about is protecting the top of your head from falling objects.


freestyle helmet - note the holes on the top.
freestyle helmet - note the holes on the top.



Petzl Altios - note that there are no straight thru holes from the top.
Petzl Altios - note that there are no straight thru holes from the top.

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By Allen Corneau
From Houston, TX
Jul 31, 2012
The basic diagrams of the UIAA tests for climbing helmets:

theuiaa.org/upload_area/pictor...

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By Princess Mia
From Vail
Jul 31, 2012
Chillin' at City of Rocks
Just read the specs for Petzel's Meteor III helmet and it is recommended for climbing/ biking and kayaking ( but not in class V and VI).

I think some manufactures are starting to make "cross breed" helmets.

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By mattm
From TX
Jul 31, 2012
Grande Grotto
Eric Krantz wrote:
Skating/biking/motorcycle helmets have foam which compresses thereby absorbing energy in the impact with... flat concrete. They are made to protect your head from hitting concrete. Single use only. Once the foam is compressed, they are no good. Climbing helmets, as stated above, are meant to protect your head from intrusion of a pointed object (small rock) through the helmet. They have no foam would be less effective than a skating helmet if you wiped it on concrete. In other words, a skating helmet is made to protect your brains during a very high rate of acceleration (such as when coming into contact with an immovable object, like the sidewalk). Kind of like a screamer.... while a climbing helmet is more like armor.


Maybe for the old-school turtle shell helmets which are very much like armor (or a hard hat) and made to protect mainly from above.

Most of the new school EPS (or other)FOAM helmets however provide impact protection from the side as well as the top. It's the main reason I switched to a foam helmet long ago. I wasn't as concerned about a strike from a rock from above (which the foam helmet protect from anyway). I was concerned more with a fall and a swinging side impact into the rock JUST like a fall off a bike etc. When I was learning to climb, my parents would cut out rock climbing accident reports in the local paper (I lived near the Gunks). I noticed that MANY of the injuries were something like "lead fall with head injuries" i.e. they fell and hit their head on the rock. THAT'S when I went EPS Foam.

In the early days, the Climbing manufacturers were behind the bike sports helmet designers. Nowadays though, they're keeping up quite nicely. The multi-sport rated Meteor 3 and the upcoming helmets from BD and Petzl are pretty sweet. The BD Vapor has me pretty excited. Looks like a Giro Bike helmet; lots of VENTING!

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By nrd
Jul 31, 2012
I have a bike helmet from Nutcase which has a warning sticker on the inside that says it is certified for cycling and skateboarding but not to use it for climbing due to risk of strangulation. Any thoughts as to why it poses more of a strangulation hazard than a climbing helmet?

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By Eric Krantz
From Black Hills
Jul 31, 2012
smoke break, pitch 5 or 6 (or 7??) of Dark Shadows
Rob Lipinski wrote:
My mammut helmet has a foam top as does a few models of BD and other helmets i can think of...


mattm wrote:
Maybe for the old-school turtle shell helmets which are very much like armor (or a hard hat) and made to protect mainly from above. Most of the new school EPS (or other)FOAM helmets however provide impact protection from the side as well as the top. It's the main reason I switched to a foam helmet long ago. I wasn't as concerned about a strike from a rock from above (which the foam helmet protect from anyway). I was concerned more with a fall and a swinging side impact into the rock JUST like a fall off a bike etc. When I was learning to climb, my parents would cut out rock climbing accident reports in the local paper (I lived near the Gunks). I noticed that MANY of the injuries were something like "lead fall with head injuries" i.e. they fell and hit their head on the rock. THAT'S when I went EPS Foam.



I'm proved wrong again. I just make this shit up, mostly. I'm glad someone out there is actually paying attention to what's going on in the world.

Time for me to upgrade my armored hard hat (w/ no foam) to a new-fanglin' stylie cap. Cross breeds, eh?

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By trishia hope
Aug 4, 2012
Ski and climbing helmets have similar constructions. They usually consist of a hard outer shell of plastic or composite material and a softer, inner foam liner. The outer shell protects your helmet from damage while the liner absorbs the force of impacts. Some climbing helmets have a suspension system made of webbing instead of a foam liner. Ski and climbing helmets should be retired once they begin to show wear and tear or if they ever take a hard hit.
__________________

Cathedral Rock

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By Josh.Wood
From New York City
Aug 8, 2012
I believe that the strongest part of a skateboard helmet is the forehead and the sides, as those are the main points of contact. For a climbing helmet, the top is where almost all impact occurs. Because landing on the top of your head is rather uncommon when skateboarding, I'm just guessing that would be the weak point on a skate helmet, but the most important for a climbing one.

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By Adam B
From Wheat Ridge, CO
Aug 8, 2012
Middle St. Vrain
Anyone get one of these new Mammut El Cap helmets? Is it awesome?

mammut.ch/en/productDetail/222...

They look very "hybrid".

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