Helmets, Bills, Current and Rolls

I’m considering upgradeing my helmet, primarily to get something low profile to fit in my day hatch. I’m considering the Head Trip Daffey, but I wondered about the effect of the rigid bill on rolls and any tendency to grab in currents.

Any experiences or advice that you wish to relate would be much appreaciated.

I would use the helmet for both surf and whitewater, and I tend to use a sweep with layback as my go-to roll if it makes any diference.


I’ve had good luck with one of the velcro-on visors. I’ve felt a small tug from it in current, but it seems to fold flat in anything strong. That tug is enough to make me wonder about the wisdom of a large fixed brim.

WRSI helmet works good for me

– Last Updated: May-24-07 8:55 AM EST –

plus the strap in the back keeps the water from pushing your helmet back and exposing your forehead. I got mine free i won it but that being said i am very happy with it and it does have a slight bill on it. i have the vented version. read up on the history of the helmet, many whitewater helmets were intially designed for sports other than whitewater kayaking and just adapted the marketing and packaging towards kayaking and are not completly safe.


I had a Head Trip Daffy for awhile which I used in whitewater and was never bothered by the bill when rolling, whether in the pool or in current. The helmet cracked down to the kevlar fibers after a particularly hard hit and so it got retired pretty quickly (actually Head Trip would have taken it back towards the purchase of a new one, but 1) I decided to go with the Shred Ready Vixen which fits my small head better and 2) the damaged Daffy was stolen out of the back of my car anyway). PS - I don’t think the fact that it cracked meant it was defective in anyway - it was just a really really hard hit, and the helmet did it’s job.

The Daffy like many others can be worn frontwards and backwards, so you can wear the bill turned back, too.

if it’s fitted right…
Rolling with a bill isn’t a big deal. If the helmet is loose on your head, the bill may cause the helmet to swing back on your head but most helmets these days have pretty good retention systems.

I paddle with a Lidds Slugger and a Shred Ready Sherlock both which have bills. I like the extra protection for your face hitting the kayak deck and I appreciate the shade from the sun.


– Last Updated: May-24-07 12:34 PM EST –

i have a couple of Lidds helmets....both of them have brims....never had a problem with them in surf or rivers...
what some WW or surf paddlers worry about is the current hitting the brim and forcing your head or helmet to move....i have had a wave pull my head one direction because of the helmet but it stopped very quickly...
i am looking at a sweet strutter that has a bigger brim....and planning on using it in surf and a river (rare albeit).....
the brim is more useful to me as sun protection than worrisome by the water aspect....

Gath makes great helmets that have no brim but can have a drop down visor if you wish....or a fixed down visor too....

i have zero luck getting my helmet anywhere in my boat accessable to me (while in the cockpit) except for between my legs....so that is where it lives....although mostly i have it on...(i play a lot in rocks and waves)...
the most important thing: vget a helemt that FITS you and is Comfy....then you will wear it more....i think of mine just as another hat-it is comfy enough that i do nto mind wearing it at all...