Hovding 3 – The helmet you wear around your neck

8 times safer?

Bicycling is the leading cause of sports-related traumatic brain injury.


Hövding claims the Hövding 3 is 8 times safer than traditional bike helmets. They base this claim on a Stanford University study done by bioengineer David Camarillo, which is supported by the National Institutes of Health National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering; Thrasher Research Fund; David and Lucile Packard Foundation; and Child Health Research Institute Transdisciplinary Initiatives Program.


The results of the study are included in the Sept. 27 edition of Annals of Biomedical Engineering.


The study concluded, "Peak accelerations obtained from these experiments with airbag helmets achieve up to an 8-fold reduction in the risk of concussion compared to standard EPS helmets."


The Hövding has a better chance of protecting you from a concussion than a traditional foam bike helmet partly because it has a lot more cushioning. It also limits neck movement when deployed.


Wear in around your neck

When deployed, the Hövding 3 looks extremely silly and huge. You wouldn't want to be seen wearing a Hövding in its deployed state.


Fortunately, you don't even have to wear in on your head. In its initial state the Hövding does not even look like a helmet. You wear it around your neck and it almost looks like you're wearing a scarf. Some call the Hövding the invisible helmet.


Sensors inside the collar read the cyclist's movement pattern 200 times per second and in the event of an accident deploys in a tenth of a second. It is powered by battery that last for about 15 hours of continuously cycling and can be fully charged in 2 hours.


If connected to a smartphone during and accident, selected contacts are automatically notified.


The Hövding is one-size-fits-all and can be adjusted via a BOA dial like the one seen in some shoes.


Some covers are available for purchase to add style to the Hövding.

Pros

  • Looks cool 
  • 8 times safer than foam helmets
  • Automatically notifies selected contacts in case of accidents
  • Keeps your head cool

Cons

  • Might not instill confidence
  • Durability unknown
  • Battery needs to be charged

Conclusion:

If you don't like wearing helmets but you must, the Hövding might just be for you.


However, even though it is 8 times safe than foam helmets, we really don't know how reliable it is. The sensors or battery might fail and the deploying mechanism might get stuck. Unlike a traditional helmet, which just works all the time. No need to be charging it at all.


But if you have the money, why not? It's cooler than wearing a helmet and safer when it works. It could also protect your neck it seems.


The Hövding 3 retails for €299.

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