Finding testers for a kid-specific helmet is a gamble. Locating a willing grom didn't prove too difficult, but asking him to properly impact-test a helmet—e.g. bang his head in some capacity—created an ethical dilemma.
Luckily, my four-year-old nephew Alex was tenacious enough to not only volunteer to test the new POCito Auric SPIN helmet on the ski hill, but to go above and beyond by banging his head on everything he could find around the house as soon as he put the helmet on. It's important to note that Alex didn't hurt himself banging his protected noggin on wooden floors, the coffee table, the wall, or even the family dog, Moose. Alex did interrupt Moose's nap, however, so the indoor head-banging test came to an end, and the helmet passed with flying colors.
At Alex's local ski hill, Bridger Bowl, his parents were happy to report that he did not—accidentally or otherwise—test the impact prevention capabilities of the POCito Auric SPIN. But, with the leading technologies that POC is currently putting into their ski helmets, it's likely he would have been better protected than ever before.
POC SPIN Technology
The POCito Auric SPIN's key feature is in the name. SPIN is an acronym for Shearing Pad INside, referencing silicone inserts that work with the interior padding to allow the helmet to pivot on impact, reducing neck strain during angled falls. Combined with a multi-impact liner and noticeably thick ABS shell, Alex's head was very well protected on the ski hill.
Read more: Ski Gear for Kids
The other key feature that sets the POCito Auric SPIN apart is its high level of visibility. Alex's parents were especially appreciative of the eye-catching fluorescent color, which makes Alex stand out in ski school. The extremely bright and rechargeable LED light panel on the back of the helmet also increases Alex's visibility on the hill for other skiers, preventing possible collisions from behind both in sunny and snowy conditions.
The only thing that took some adjustment for Alex was the weight of the helmet. All of the top-notch safety features carry some additional mass, but other than one initial impression of "It's heavy!" Alex did not make another remark about the helmet's heft.
At $180, the helmet does make a dent in the wallet, but thanks to the multi-impact liner and size adjustability, it'll be just right for Alex's little sister Julia when he outgrows it. Plus, if there is a single kids product that you want to pay full price for, it's a helmet.
POCito Auric SPIN Kid's Helmet Specifications
- Sizes: XS-S (51-54 cm), M-L (55-58 cm)
- Patent-pending SPIN (Shearing Pads Inside) pads
- Integrated LED panel for enhanced visibility
- Multi-impact EPP liner
- Robust ABS Shell
- RECCO avalanche rescue reflector
- Adjustable ventilation
- Size adjustment system
- Reflective stickers
- "My info" panel
- MSRP: $180 [POCsports.com]