Home » Dirt Bikes » Guide to Dirt Bike Helmets: Why Do Dirt Bike Helmets Have a Visor?
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Guide to Dirt Bike Helmets: Why Do Dirt Bike Helmets Have a Visor?

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If you’re new to dirt bikes, one of the first things you may notice is the difference between dirt bike or MX helmets and regular street motorcycle helmets

While both are designed to protect you in the event of a collision, there are some key difference to a dirt bike helmet that make it much better suited for off-roading riding and motocross racing. 

Check out the details below. 

Difference Between Dirt Bike Helmets & Street Motorcycle Helmets

By just looking at a dirt bike helmet and street helmet side-by-side, you’ll notice some obvious differences. 

Dirt bike helmets are typically longer at the chin with an open face and a visor, or peak, at the top. 

Street helmets come in a variety of styles including open face, full face, ¾, etc. Street helmets are typically rounder in appearance when compared to dirt bike and off-road helmets. 

One of the main reasons is riding speeds. 

In general, you’ll be going much faster on a street motorcycle than on a dirt bike. For that reason, street helmets need to be more aerodynamic and wind resistant. 

On a dirt bike, you’re going to be facing a lot more debris and potential obstacles whether you’re on a dirt track or riding on a trail. 

A dirt bike’s helmet is designed to be extremely lightweight, well ventilated, and to provide maximum protection for your face and goggles as you ride. 

One of the key features to a dirt bike helmet is the visor, or peak. 

Why Do Dirt Bike Helmets Have a Visor?

Dirt bike helmets are designed to be used with goggles. 

The goggles and the visor, which is also known as a peak, are designed to work together to protect your face. 

Your goggles should sit snuggle against the peak of the helmet. 

This design provides good ventilations and helps prevent your goggles from fogging up. 

The outstretched peak is also used to protect your face and goggles from debris. 

If you’re racing, it’s used to shield you from the “roost” of other riders. The roost is the dirt/mud spray that’s sent up from a dirt bike’s rear wheel. (It kind of looks like a rooster’s tail).

When debris is coming your way, you can tilt your head down slightly to prevent anything from hitting your face. 

On the trail, the helmet’s visor and outstretched chin is useful to protect you from branches, brush, and other obstacles. 

Finally, a visor can provide a bit of protection from the sun as you ride – though, tinted goggles should be your primary tool to battle sun glare. 

Your dirt bike helmet’s visor will either be attached or removable. Some can be adjusted to different settings. 

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Content Editor: Ethan Orenstein

Ethan is not just any motorcycle enthusiast. With a decade of experience riding, maintaining, and restoring a range of motorcycles, Ethan brings a wealth of knowledge to the table. Many of the tips and tricks shared on this site are born from hours spent wrenching on personal bikes. Paired with his experience as a journalist covering DMV & insurance topics, MotorcycleZombies.com is a must-visit site for any home-mechanic. Every article has been carefully reviewed and edited to ensure accuracy, authenticity, and simplicity - all to help bring your bike back from the dead and onto the road.

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