The Abus Rookie helmet is for early riders (and passengers).
All the essentials are here in this Abus lid for little kids. Comfort is key to keeping a helmet actually on your child's head rather than being lent to the dog, made into a doll's car seat or a basket for collecting berries. The Rookie has deep padding that shields the chin from the chin clip - a regular pinch point when trying to put helmets on wiggly kids. The padding around the rest of the skull is adequate but no more.
To ensure a good fit, there are easy to use clips for adjustment around the ears and a dial at the back which tightens with a good 'click' so you are sure it's doing its job.
The ten air vents are quite small but someone young enough to wear the Rookie is unlikely to be going at such a great speed as to make airflow a significant issue. The front row of vents have mesh to ward off insects and these (vents, not insects) are well ingrained into the EPS so form a sturdy barrier.
In case your youngsters haven't decided between a career in mountain biking or in road racing, the Rookie has a visor-y shape to the front, providing a little sunshade, rather than the more usual clip on/off plastic visor option. The fairly flat back makes it a good choice if you are sitting your child in a bike seat as they can easily rest their head back without being hindered by a more 'aero' pointy design.
We weighed the Rookie in at 228g compared to the stated 194g, but even on our scales it still sits in the light to medium range for a helmet of this size.
There is a fair amount of exposed polystyrene on show, which is very attractive to little fingernails. This is a flaw in the design and means it might not last well enough to be worn by a sibling too.
Despite being billed as a baby/toddler helmet, the minimum setting of 46cm still proved too big for its intended 14 month old tester. The Rookie seems more suited to the 2-4 year group (but measuring your child's head before purchase is vital).
The Rookie comes in several bright colourways. We were send a Barbie pink version but there are bright blue, red and other colours available to choose from.
Sits comfortably on toddler heads, but the exposed EPS is tempting for little fingers to pick at
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Make and model: Abus Rookie Children's Helmet
Size tested: 46-52cm, Pink
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
From a child seat, through stabilisers, to your child's first proper bike – the right helmet that looks cool in every situation!
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
In-Mold for durable fusion of the outer shell and the shock absorbing helmet material (EPS)
Extended foam visor for maximum face protection
Deep temple and neck protection
Flat rear side allows perfect fit in child seats or trailers
In-Molded lower edge protection shell
ZoomLite - precise adjustment system with handy wheel
Size adjustment via full ring made of robust and flexible plastic for ideal stability and adaptability
Good ventilation with 3 air inlets and 5 outlets
Removable and washable padding with highest wearing comfort
Soft touch straps easy to adjust by practical sliders
Integrated fly net
High passive safety thanks to huge and very intense reflectors
Fortunately we didn't suffer any knocks to the helmet in use.
Exposed EPS may limit the lifetime of this helmet.
Nice and light compared to other children's helmets.
The covered chin strap is particularly good.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Bright colours available.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
Age: 36 Height: 5'7 Weight: size 16
I usually ride: Trek 7.5 WSD My best bike is: Turquoise Cruiser
I've been riding for: Under 5 years I ride: A few times a week I would class myself as: Novice
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, general fitness riding, Leisure