We test the MIPS version of the ZY helmet from Italian brand RH+. The MIPS helmet is designed for extra protection against rotational forces in a fall, but adds £30 to the helmet's price.
There are an increasing number of helmets out there which incorporate MIPS technology. This is a system developed by a Swedish company which is designed to improve head protection in a glancing impact.
It consists of a plastic sleeve loosely attached between the inside surface of the helmet and its padding and with pads in the helmet body. If you experience a glancing blow to the head rather than a direct impact, the sleeve is designed to rotate against the helmet body, reducing the rotational force on the brain and so the potential for injury.
RH+ incorporates MIPS into two of its top end helmets: the ZY and the more aero Z Alpha. Both helmets are also available without MIPS and there’s a £30 premium for the technology.
RH+ is an Italian maker of a full range of cycling clothing and sunglasses as well as its helmets. It also makes snowsports gear. The ZY is a co-moulded helmet in which the shell, reinforcement and polystyrene body are formed in a single process rather than being attached to each other separately. It’s the typical way of making higher end helmets to reduce weight and ensure strength.
There’s shell material wrapping over the polystyrene on the brow and rear bottom edges of the helmet to help protect it from bumps and scratches. RH+ also incorporates reflectives into the rear of the helmet and the cradle arms for some extra visibility in the dark.
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The ZY MIPS has a quality feel to it, with a well finished shell and there is enough venting that I didn’t feel over-warm even on low speed off-road climbs in UK summer conditions. The helmet sits quite deep on the head, so it feels solidly planted and there’s well positioned padding which is not over-generous or too thick but is enough to feel comfortable. The padding dries quickly and is removable if you want to wash it.
The rear retained adjusts through four positions. It has another pad on its inside surface and a large, easy to use dial adjuster. The straps are wide, adjustable and sit comfortably, with a padded chin protector wrapping around the webbing.
At a shade over 300g for the size L/XL, the ZY MIPS is not super-light, although it’s got a quality feel about it and should be durable. It comes in its own white microfiber bag too. RH+ sells directly in the UK, with its products available from its website.
A quality, well-vented road helmet with MIPS impact protection but a bit heavier than some.