how to break in a football helmet

Breaking in a football helmet can be done by wearing it for short periods, adjusting the chin strap, and using a ball to apply pressure on the helmet gently. As a football player, it is crucial to have a properly fitting helmet to ensure maximum protection during the game.

However, a new football helmet can initially feel stiff and uncomfortable, increasing the risk of injury. Therefore, it is essential to break in the helmet adequately before playing.

In this article, we will discuss the steps to break in a football helmet, the time it takes to break in a helmet, and some tips on helmet maintenance.

Let’s dive in to know more.

Understanding the Helmet Breaking-In Process

Breaking in a football helmet is necessary before stepping onto the field to ensure safety and comfort. The breaking-in process involves getting the helmet to conform to the player’s head shape, eliminating discomfort and protecting against injury.

Materials Required

Several items are needed to break in a football helmet effectively. These include:

  • Football helmet
  • Soft towels or clothes
  • Water
  • Helmet conditioner or rubbing alcohol
  • Mild soap

Benefits of a Properly Broken in Helmet

Breaking in a football helmet can take some time, but the benefits make it worth it. A properly broken-in helmet:

  • Provides a comfortable fit that reduces irritation, especially during long hours of practice or games.
  • Enhances visibility, reducing the chance of unexpected movements on the field.
  • Improves safety, protecting players from the impact of falls or collisions.

Timeframe for Breaking in a Football Helmet

Breaking in a football helmet requires patience and cannot be rushed. Achieving the desired fit can take a few days and a week. The process may vary depending on the helmet, the player’s head shape, and fit preference.

If you’re passionate about the game and want to enhance your gear, you’ll also find valuable advice in our guide on how to properly break in your football gloves.

Safety Considerations

While breaking into a football helmet, there are a few safety considerations to remember.

  • Do not use heat to dry the helmet; this can alter the helmet’s shape.
  • Take breaks to ensure the helmet is not too tight and causing discomfort.
  • Only use mild soap or helmet conditioner, and avoid harsh chemicals that can damage the helmet.
  • Keep the helmet clean and dry during the process to prevent skin irritation and foul odor.

Breaking in a football helmet is crucial to ensure a comfortable, safe fit. By using the right materials, understanding the benefits, considering safety, and being patient during the process, players can enjoy the game with peace of mind.

Preparing for the Helmet Breaking-In Process

Before using a brand-new football helmet, it is essential to break it in properly. Breaking in your football helmet helps to ensure that it is comfortable, secure, and safe to use.

Here are the necessary steps you should follow to prepare your helmet for the upcoming season:

  • Inspect your helmet

Check your helmet for any visible defects; a defective helmet is useless. Look for physical damage, such as cracks and dents; ensure the mask, chin strap, and padding are tightly secured to the helmet.

  • Ensure a proper fit

Your helmet must fit correctly to maximize safety and comfort. Place the helmet on your head without fastening the chin strap to check if it is a perfect fit. If it fits well, the helmet should be firm enough to avoid moving unnecessarily but allow for some ventilation.

  • Adjust the padding

After verifying the fit, check the padding. The padding must fit your head limits and be adequately snug to avoid fast movement, but it shouldn’t compress too tight, making you uncomfortable. If needed, please remove and add foam pads for a perfect fit.

  • Positioning the helmet

The helmet should be level on the head above the brow and not tilted too far forward or back. Ensure the neck roll sits comfortably on your neck and doesn’t choke or rub you.

  • Breaking-in

Now that the helmet fits correctly let’s break it in. Wear your helmet for short periods, such as practice sessions or drills. This breaks in and adjusts the padding to your head; eventually, you can wear it for longer periods.

By following these simple steps, you’ll avoid the discomforts associated with a misfit helmet, which could lead to concussions and other head injuries, and maximize safety.

For an all-encompassing guide on football equipment care, check out ‘The Path to Perfection: Expert Tips for Breaking in Leather Footballs.

Step-By-Step Guide: How to Break In a Football Helmet

Helmets are an essential part of football gear that protects players from head injuries. A new helmet may feel tight, but a properly adjusted one can prevent injuries and allow players to perform to their fullest potential.

To help you adjust your new helmet, we have compiled a step-by-step guide on how to break into a football helmet.

  • Step 1: Adjust the Chin Strap

Before you start, adjust the chin strap to ensure a snug fit on your chin. The strap should fit under your chin without sliding or feeling too tight.

  • Step 2: Loosen the Helmet

Loosen the helmet by adjusting the air bladder or removing any foam inserts if provided.

  • Step 3: Wear the Helmet

Wear the helmet for short periods daily; gradually increase the time.

  • Step 4: Adjust the helmet’s Front and Back

While wearing the helmet, tighten the chinstrap until it is snug. Then, adjust the front and back until it conforms to your head’s shape.

  • Step 5: Check the Fit

Check for discomfort or pressure points once you have worn it for a few hours.

  • Step 6: Tighten the Helmet

Adjust the helmet’s fit after you identify any discomfort or pressure points. Tighten the helmet until it conforms to your head shape to eliminate the pressure.

  • Step 7: Repeat the Process

Continue wearing the helmet for extended periods, repeating steps 4 to 6 until you find the perfect fit.

Breaking in a football helmet may seem like a hassle, but it’s essential for your safety. A well-adjusted helmet won’t distract you from your game and will protect you from the dangers of tackling and other impacts.

Remember, helmets are essential to football gear, and breaking them incorrectly can make all the difference.

Testing and Assessing the Fit

A football helmet is one of the most vital equipment for protecting players from head injuries. However, it’s only useful when it fits snugly and securely. Here are some points to consider while testing and assessing the fit of a football helmet:

  • Check the fit: Before testing for a secure fit, you need to ensure that the helmet fits correctly. The helmet’s shell should cover the player’s forehead and temples without obstructing vision. The helmet’s chin strap should be fastened and adjusted to snug below the chin comfortably.
  • Assess the front-back fit: After wearing the helmet for a while, it’s crucial to assess the front-back and side-to-side fit. You can check the front-back fit by placing your hand on the back of the helmet and pushing it forward. The fit is secure if there is less than an inch of movement. You need to adjust the helmet if it moves more than an inch.
  • Assess the side-to-side fit: You can check the side-to-side fit by placing your hand on each side of the helmet and pushing it in a lateral direction. If there’s little or no movement, the fit is secure. You need to adjust the helmet if it moves more than an inch.
  • Tighten the chinstrap: If the helmet moves during the assessment, it’s time to adjust the chinstrap. If it’s still not snug, you may need to adjust the helmet’s internal padding.
  • Check for excessive pressure points: Excessive pressure points on the player’s head may result in discomfort, headaches, and an improper fit. Examining for discomfort points and adjusting the helmet’s padding is essential.

By following these steps, you can ensure the perfect fit of a football helmet. A secure and snug helmet protects against head injuries and enhances the player’s performance on the field.

And if you’ve ever wondered how to maintain your gear’s freshness, we’ve got you covered with tips on how to make football gloves smell better in our blog.

Additional Tips and Considerations for Breaking in a Football Helmet

Breaking in a football helmet can be a challenging task, but there are some additional tips and considerations you can follow to make the process smoother.

Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Start by wearing your helmet for short periods. An hour a day for a few days is a good start.
  • Make sure you wear your helmet in different weather conditions. This will help it mold to your head better.
  • Adjust your helmet’s pads to get a proper fit. Loose pads can cause discomfort and even injuries.
  • Check your helmet’s fit every time you put it on. If it starts feeling loose, adjust the pads or straps.
  • Make sure your helmet’s chin strap is snug but not too tight. You should be able to move your jaw and breathe easily.
  • Don’t use substances like heat or water to try and mold your helmet. This can damage the helmet’s integrity and put you at risk of injury.
  • Store your helmet in a cool and dry place. Exposure to heat or moisture can weaken the helmet’s material and reduce its effectiveness.
  • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning and maintenance. This will keep your helmet in good condition and ensure it provides maximum protection.
  • Replace your helmet every two to three years or immediately after any impact or significant damage.
  • Remember that the proper fit is crucial to your helmet’s effectiveness. A poorly fitted helmet can cause serious head injuries, so take the time to ensure it fits properly before you head out on the field.

By following these additional tips and considerations, you can break in your helmet effectively and ensure it provides the best protection on the field.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Know If My Football Helmet Needs to Be Broken In?

If the helmet feels too tight or uncomfortable, it needs to be broken in. It should snugly fit the head but not cause discomfort or pressure points.

How Long Does It Take to Break In a Football Helmet?

It may take up to a week or two to break in a football helmet, depending on the level and frequency of use. It’s essential to follow manufacturer guidelines and not rush the process.

Can I Break In a New Football Helmet By Wearing It While Sleeping?

No, breaking in a new football helmet while sleeping is not advisable. It can lead to misshaping the helmet or cause discomfort and pressure sores that may worsen during prolonged use.

Is It Safe to Use a Football Helmet That Hasn’t Been Broken In?

No, using a football helmet that hasn’t been broken is unsafe. It may cause discomfort, pressure soreness, or even headache, affecting the wearer’s performance and overall well-being.

How Can I Speed Up the Process of Breaking In a Football Helmet?

You can speed up breaking in a football helmet by adjusting the chin strap to ensure a proper fit, using it often, and gently bending the helmet’s shell in areas where it’s too tight, but don’t try to force or reshape it.

How Do I Maintain My Football Helmet After Breaking It In?

After breaking into a football helmet, keeping it clean and maintaining it regularly is imperative. Avoid harsh chemicals, store it in a cool, dry place, and inspect it regularly for any damages that may affect its effectiveness.


After reading this comprehensive guide on how to break in a football helmet, you should now have a better understanding of the process and the benefits that come with breaking in your helmet properly. Remember to take your time and follow the steps carefully.

Breaking in your helmet can take some time, but it’s worth the effort to ensure a comfortable and safe fit on the field. By following these steps, you can rest assured that you’re doing everything possible to maximize your protection and minimize your risk of injury.

So go ahead and grab your helmet, start the process today, and enjoy a safer, more comfortable football experience!

Muktadir Risan is a passionate author behind the Pro Sports Hack. With a knack for sports hacks, tips, and tutorials, he shares his expertise to help sports enthusiasts gain a competitive edge. His concise and actionable content resonates with readers, inspiring them to elevate their game.