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Wouldn't any major impact make it fly off the head and not protect you.

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    Exactly. It is similar to all safety gear that are not apply properly. – mootmoot Jul 20 '16 at 16:26
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    A bike (or football or hockey or polo) helmet without a chin strap or some other equivalent means to secure it to the head is worthless (except perhaps to keep the sun off you head). – Daniel R Hicks Jul 20 '16 at 19:25
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    Are you asking whether a helmet could me made that doesn't use straps, or whether a typical helmet with straps serves any purpose if the straps are not done up? There are a few motorbike helmets that are two piece designs with a pivot instead of straps, and those seem to work quite well. Something similar might be possible with a bike helmet, but ventilation, weight and cost make it unlikely I think. – Móż Jul 20 '16 at 21:08
  • There are few if any helmets that go down far enough to encase the head like a motorbike helmet. Some downhill/full face ones might work. – Criggie Jul 3 '17 at 1:34
3

Yes. And no. It makes some sense in that a helmet should fit snug enough to stay on on its own. The chin strap's job it to keep the helmet on your head after the initial impact. Were one to have some condition (a skin condition, stitches on the face or neck, etc) where the chin strap was extremely detrimental, one would be somewhat safer riding with a helmet simply missing the chin strap, than with no helmet at all.

However, barring some obvious condition, or a radical helmet design that doesn't require a strap to stay on after impact, a helmet without a chin strap makes no sense.

  • It would be quite easy for an unstrapped helmet to fly off in, say, a "head over" accident due to striking something or braking too hard with the front wheel. In such a case the helmet would be dislodged before the head struck the ground. – Daniel R Hicks Jul 20 '16 at 22:56
  • Well, the over the neck adjustement, at the back of the head, can get tight, and seems like it could still make the helmet effective in many scenarios. – gaurwraith Jul 20 '16 at 22:59
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    All of my helmets will stay on, without the chin strap, while I "bang head" like a 80's metal freak. They should fit and stay on as well as a ball cap. If your helmet doesn't, then it doesn't fit properly and you should get a different helmet. – Deleted User Jul 20 '16 at 23:02

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