10 Best Youth Football Helmet Reviews & Buying Guide 2019

Injuries are common in football, just like in most of the other sports. Brain injuries are particularly common, and have been associated with youth football leagues for decades. This makes football helmets one of the crucial parts designed to provide protection to football players.

The best youth football helmets are high quality and built excellently to lower the risk of injuries. If you are looking for one but don’t know what makes a good helmet, this guide has comprehensive information that will help you make an informed decision.

Can These Helmets Prevent Concussions?

Concussion has elicited a lot of emphatic discussions over the years. It is an issue of concern not just in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and National Football League (NFL), but also youth and high school levels.

The risk of concussions only increases for youth football players, probably because they start playing the sport so young when their brains are still developing. Head trauma at this stage can negatively impact on a child for the rest of their life.

So can football helmets prevent concussions? Absolutely. They protect the head and lower the risk of injuries. Even when a player falls or butts heads with someone on the field, the risk of a concussion is lower with a helmet.

Our Best Youth Football Helmet Reviews:

1. Schutt Sports Youth AiR Standard V Football Helmet

The Schutt Sports Youth AiR Standard V is a premium youth football helmet that offers reliable protection. The interior is extremely comfortable and the built-in comfort liner provides increased surface coverage.

Another feature that guarantees comfort to any wearer is the DNA jaw pads. They are incredibly comfortable and durably constructed from vinyl material. The pads provide added protection for the jaws.

There is some space between the shell of the helmet and your head. This ensures plenty of room to move and breathe without sacrificing comfort. There is also the guaranteed snug fit to be happy about.

This helmet is designed to last a long time while providing optimal comfort and protection. The outer shell is made from ABS plastic while the interior features an EPP and EVA foam system. It meets NOCSAE safety standards. Other notable features include plastic buckles and youth soft cup chin strap.

Highlighted Features :

  • Traditional standoff helmet shell made from ABS plastic
  • Meets NOCSAE safety standards
  • Air Maxx TPU 1.25” jaw pads
  • EPP and EVA foam liner system
  • Youth soft cup chinstrap and plastic buckles
  • 5 colors to choose from

2. Schutt Sports Vengeance A3 Youth Football Helmet

Next up is the Vengeance A3 by Schutt Sports, which comes in 15 colors and multiple sizes. It boasts a low profile shell that minimizes weight. The shell is quite sleek and its lightness is a huge advantage for young players who don’t want their gear to weigh them down.

The interior of the helmet is lined with a combination of black and green TPU in single and double layers. This ensures maximum protection against low and high impact blows. The non-inflatable comfort liners deliver a soft pillow-like feel.

The inter-link jaw pads are mechanically attached and designed to provide a secure fit to the lower areas of the face. While it doesn’t come with a facemask, the Vengeance A3 makes an excellent purchase for youth footballers. It is comfortable, durable, and stylish and offers maximum protection for the wearer.

Highlighted Features :

  • 15 colors and six sizes to choose from
  • Low profile shell design minimizes weight
  • Liner has TPU outer skin
  • Combination of single and double layer TPU in black and green colors
  • Non-inflatable comfort liners

3. SpeedFlex Youth Helmet

The SpeedFlex Youth Helmet by Riddell is specially designed with the needs of young players in mind. It not only looks great, but also performs as well as a football helmet should. Highlights include a flex panel design that helps reduce force of impact. It also makes the helmet look fast, whether or not the player is in motion. The Ratchet-Loc system is an ingenious design.

When it comes to comfort, the SpeedFlex Youth Helmet ticks all boxes. It features Flexliner, which improves comfort while ensuring helmet stability. Also included is a new occipital air liner that cradles the occipital lobe, thus providing the perfect fit.

There are five inflation points, and the valve locks for holding the airliner valve close to the shell. This makes it easier to push in the liner, which can be particularly frustrating with a speed helmet.

Highlighted Features :

  • 10+ colors and four sizes to choose from
  • Flex system w/ hinge clips throughout the shell
  • Occipital lock inflatable liner
  • Inflatable custom fit flexliner
  • Non-removable Ratchet-Loc
  • Meets NOCSAE safety standards

4. Rawlings Momentum Plus Youth Football Helmet

Rawlings MOMENTUMP-PARENT

Another great helmet for youth football players is the Rawlings Momentum Plus. What we love most about it is that its shell design is similar to the ones used for professional helmets. The shell is highly durable, stylish and sturdy.

A major highlight is the customizable fit liner that features heat exchange technology. This combo helps reduce force of impact while increasing comfort. There is a rear inflation port that allows young players to adjust the mask so it suits their unique face shape and size.

The shell is durably constructed with stainless steel. It is resistant to weather and corrosion. Unlike ABS plastic, stainless steel can resist impact. The interior is designed in such a way that it remains cool while the player is in the field.

Highlighted Features :

  • Rear inflation port to adjust to size of face
  • Customizable fit liner with built-in heat exchange technology
  • Four sizes and three colors to choose from
  • Only weighs 2.6 pounds

5. Riddell Youth Speed Football Helmet

Riddell 3001582

The Riddell Youth Speed Football Helmet is one of the best helmets for young players. Major highlights include the high-impact ABS gloss shell that provides optimal protection by absorbing impact. It is also durable and stylish. The shell features an aggressive profile with oversized holes that allow for free air flow. Also included is an anti-bacterial and moisture-resistant airliner for longevity.

This helmet comes with a quick release facemask system that reduces removal time by half. It is corrosion resistant, thanks to stainless steel hardware. There are inflatable pads at strategic locations such as the back, neck and side. These provide added protection again impact in case of collisions. You need a pump to inflate the pads, and this is sold separately.

Other notable features of the Riddell Youth Speed Football Helmet include a built-in T-nut wrench and mid hook-up chin strap. It is also worth noting that this helmet meets nose standards.

Highlighted Features :

  • High impact ABS gloss shell
  • Oversized vent holes for air circulation
  • Quick release facemask system
  • Stainless steel hardware
  • Inflatable pads at the back, neck and side
  • Mid hook-up chin strap and built-in T-nut wrench

6. Schutt Sports Vengeance A3+ Youth Football Helmet

Schutt 2039805009-Parent

Available in 16 colors, the Schutt Sports Vengeance A3+ is a one-of-a-kind youth football helmet. It is designed as an upgrade of the Vengeance A3, and pulls all stops when it comes to design. The helmet is incredibly comfortable thanks to a great interior liner that feels soft. But perhaps the best benefit has to do with its weight. It is lightweight and doesn’t weigh down the player, but still sturdy enough to provide ample protection.

The low profile shell design does a good job of keeping the weight down while the inflatable Surefit air guarantees custom fitting capabilities. The interior liner features a TPU outer shell that lends a soft pillow-like feel. Like the previous model, this one has a combination of single and double layer TPU in black and green. The inter-link jaws are mechanically attached and stay in place for a long time.

Highlighted Features :

  • Liner with TPU outer skin
  • 16 colors and four sizes
  • Mechanically attached inter-link jaw pads
  • Inflatable surfeit air for custom fit
  • Low profile shell design

7. Schutt Sports Youth FB Recruit Hybrid Spms Helmet

Schutt 7980056275-Parent

At this point, we know Schutt is one of the biggest names in football helmets. It offers reliable and quality helmets for youth football players that provide optimal safety. Schutt Sports Recruit line features helmets specially designed for young players.

This particular model boasts a strong interior that withstands impact. The interior is lined with a combination of TPU and D30. An inflatable airliner allows for a snug fit. A huge advantage offered by this helmet is comfort and this is achieved with a comfort liner. The one inch inter-link jaw pads provide added protection while ensuring the face stays put during the game.

Another notable feature is the DNA face guards, which are strategically placed to provide optimal protection. The helmet is available in multiple colors and sizes. It utilizes energy lock technology to ensure more impact resistance.

Highlighted Features :

  • Position-specific DNA faceguards
  • Made from carbon steel titanium
  • Inflatable comfort liner and inter-link jaw pads
  • Hybrid TPU /D30 cushioning
  • Compatible with Schutt Youth Flex DNA Faceguards

8. Rawlings Momentum Plus Youth Football Helmet

Rawlings MOMENTUMP-PARENT

Concluding our list is the Momentum Plus Youth Football helmet by Rawlings, a perfect choice for those who are big on customization. The company makes it easy for players to customize their fit rather than provide one size fits all.

The rear inflation port allows for customization options and ensures the helmet fits each player as it should. In turn, this means more comfort and safety while in the field. The helmet is built to withstand impact and last a long time with stainless steel hardware. Its shell is made from high impact performance ABS plastic.

Highlighted Features :

  • Stainless steel hardware
  • High impact performance ABS shell
  • Customizable fit liner
  • Rear inflation port

The Perfect Youth Football Helmet – Buying Guide

Shopping for the best youth football helmet to prevent concussions should not be a rushed process. With protection being at stake, you need the best helmet you can get.

Keeping the following factors in mind will ensure you make the right choice:

Size and Fit

A crucial consideration to make is the size of football helmet, and a trainer can help choose the right size for you. Many youth football helmets come with a sizing chart with instructions on how to find the perfect fit.

Assessing the measurements may not be enough, so feel free to try on the helmets before purchase. The right helmet should be both tight and comfortable. Apply hand pressure on top and ensure that the pressure is evenly distributed. It important that you buy from the youth section because adult helmets are too heavy for kids, and this can put them at risk.

Weight

This plays a huge role in the wearer’s comfort while in the field.  Stay clear of heavy helmets that will wear you down. They are strenuous to carry and cause fatigue, making it difficult to play. Consider lightweight helmets that are still secure and perform well on the field. They will also minimize fatigue and allow you to be on your best game.

Visor

This is a crucial element that every youth football helmet should come with. The visor provides an extra layer of protection for your eyes. It allows the wearer to play freely without worrying about possible damage to the eyes.

In recent years, manufacturers have incorporated sensors in visors to keep track of players’ health and safety. They calculate the impact received by a player. While not a compulsory feature to have, it certainly comes handy when coaching staff need to determine when a player received a concussion-causing hit.

Padding

The best youth football helmets come with inner padding. Some have inflatable padding, which allow players to withstand blows to the head. Inflatable padding also provides a secure and comfortable fit.

Ensure that the inner padding is abrasion-resistant as this affects your comfort on the field. The cushioning should be soft, comfortable and make it easy to play freely without adjustments.

Durability of outer shell

An important feature to look for is a high quality outer shell that can withstand the extremely aggressive hits associated with football. There is a high possibility of head-to-head collisions, and a durable outer shell helps reduce impact and prevent concussion. It also allows the player to get up and keep playing even after a collision.

Look for youth football helmet ratings, which are subject to the standard safety measures. The best helmets have a NOCSAE seal, an acceptable standard for helmets designed for youth and professional football. The seal is usually found in the back.

Brand

Buying from the best brands is crucial when making any purchase. Some brands that stand out when it comes to youth football helmets include Xenith, Riddell and Schutt. Xenith is known for their high quality youth and professional football helmets. Their products provide optimal protection without sacrificing durability, comfort or design.

Schutt helmets have amazing designs but still deliver on style, durability and comfort. Many professional footballers have praised Schutt helmets for being durable and comfortable. Riddell has continuously exceeded customer expectations by providing high quality helmets for youth and professional footballers alike.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. What kind of padding is used in youth football helmets?

Most manufacturers use expanded polypropylene foam to line the interior of youth football helmets. The main role of this foam is to provide an added layer of protection and absorb impact. Manufacturers add more foam at strategic areas that get hit more often.

2. How you know which size to choose?

It is always advisable to consult a trainer when deciding on a helmet size. If you don’t have a trainer, try wrapping a flexible measuring tape around your head. This will provide a somewhat accurate circumference of your head. Match this measurement with the size chart to find the right helmet.

3. Can adults wear youth football helmets?

Yes, as long as it meets the minimum safety standards and fits comfortably.

4. Should a football helmet come with a chinstrap and facemask?

It really comes down to the specific model and manufacturer. Some helmets have a facemask and chinstrap while others don’t. Some brands provide fit pads and helmet hardware separate from the facemask and chinstrap.

5. Can you pump air into the helmet?

Absolutely, particularly if it features inflatable pads. Some helmets have strategically placed pads, and pumping air into them provides an extra layer of protection and a customized fit. It ensures that your head doesn’t move around a lot in the helmet and reduces the force of impact in case of a head-to-head collision.

Final Verdict

There you go – everything you need to know about choosing the best youth football helmet. Some of them are pricey, but then quality comes at a higher price.

Our buying guide section has great tips to help you choose a perfect helmet. Remember to keep safety, comfort, durability and safety features in mind. Look for rear inflation ports that allow for a custom fit, interior padding that cushions the head, and durable outer shell designed to withstand impact. Good luck!

Our list of 10 best youth football helmet reviews also presents you with models with varying features and costs to help you easily choose one that matches your needs.

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