How do I stay cool under my helmet?

While I would love to answer this question AND tell you I can solve all helmet hair problems, the truth is I can only help you with staying cool.  Looking cool, well, that’s up to you.  (It’s over-rated, anyway!) I’m a firm believer in helmets for riding and lungeing.  For me.  What you do with your head is your business.  I will be naked headed for grooming, but any kids that I work with must wear helmets within eyesight of any horse.  But it can get stinking hot in there!  I used to think it was my awesome smarty pants brain working, turns out it’s just my body heat getting stuck in a brain bucket.  


So how do you stay cool while wearing a helmet?  I have a helmet with vents.  Some days I wonder if they work, and then I wear my back up helmet without vents and simultaneously kick myself.  I also like to sometimes wear a bandana under my helmet, this helps to reduce the amount of sweat (and smell) that can get stuck in your horse riding helmet. 


You may also consider using a different helmet at home than at shows.  While you likely want black or navy for a show, at home you could ride in a white, tan or other light color.  



Vents on a Brain Bucket.  


I also take my helmet off in between horses.  This gives me a chance to “air out” and also a chance for barn mates to make jokes.  I have noticed that some riders just keep their helmets on all the live long day at shows.  I’m guessing this has to do with hair nets and multiple horses and business and no time to redo.  But, at home, your day may be able to give you some naked skull time.  


If I’m really hot I will use a damp wash cloth around my neck when I ride.  You could even keep one in the freezer for a bit.  This helps some heat evaporate.  You can also handily use the rag to wipe any sweat that threatens to blind you. Back at the cross ties, grab an ice pack from the freezer and chill out.  A few moments on your neck will help cool you off.  


Stay hydrated!  Lots of water throughout the day.  And remember - it may just be too hot to ride - for you and your horse!!


For more info on finding a properly fitting helmet, you can read this gem.  This snazzy article has tips on how to clean and care for your helmet.