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POC Ventral Air SPIN Helmet Review

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POC Ventral Air SPIN 1
Photo Credit : POC

POC is a Swedish company based in Stockholm that opened their doors in 2005 to improve the safety of skiing helmets. The brand produced their first MTB helmet in 2007 and a first road helmet (the Octal) in 2014. 

POC started with helmets but has become a prominent industry manufacturer of eyewear, body armor, apparel and accessories for the cycling and snow sports markets.

The Ventral Air SPIN is POC’s top-of-the-line road helmet and successor to the Octal.

It set out to solve the problem of creating an aerodynamic helmet in an elegant design that is lightweight, improves rider safety, and provides an excellent level of comfort and protection.

The Ventral SPIN helmet exists in four versions.

  1. Ventral. The first of the Ventral family, designed with unmatched aerodynamics, performance (no side vents), ventilation and safety in mind.
  2. Ventral Air. Improved airflow over the entire head (with side vents). Perfect for long days in the mountains or when riding in hotter weather.
  3. Ventral Air NFC. Identical to the Air but with an embedded NFC chip for rider emergency contact information.
  4. Ventral Tempus. Also identical to the Air, but with a closed front for complete protection against the cold, wind and rain.

The EF Education First Pro Cycling Team wears the Ventral Air SPIN in pink to match their team colors. POC has been their bike helmet and eyewear sponsor since 2014.

Technical Specifications

  • Weight : 230g (Size M)
  • Color : 6
  • Number of vents : 19

Who is the POC Ventral Air SPIN For?

The POC Ventral Air SPIN is for cyclists looking for the pinnacle in design, safety, and aerodynamics in a lightweight, elegant helmet.

SPIN (Shearing Pads INside) is POC’s proprietary MIPS-like system integrated into their helmets to provide optimal protection against rotational forces that occur in a crash or impact.

What I Think About the POC Ventral Air SPIN?

I love this helmet. It’s extremely comfortable and it has become one of our favorite bike helmets here.

It’s lightweight and provides excellent airflow, regardless of how slow or fast I’m riding. And since it’s made with rider safety in mind, I know I’m protected in the event of a crash.

POC has a clear vision to Protect the lives and reduce the consequences of accidents for athletes and anyone inspired to be one. With four Ventral SPIN models available to choose from, there’s one to suit anybody’s needs.

To achieve their safety objectives, the brand created POC Lab, the collaboration of some of the greatest minds in research, medicine and safety studies to make recommendations and look out for new trends. You may have heard of one of their biggest partners, Volvo, another Swedish company with a respected reputation for safety.

Let’s checkout the features that go into the POC Ventral Air SPIN helmet.

Pros

  • Slimmer profile than the previous Octal helmets.
  • Comfortable to wear in an easily adjustable fit.
  • Lightweight. So light, it’s easy to forget it’s on.
  • Stylish. A fantastic looking helmet.

Cons

  • Not all glasses fit the Eye garage, too narrow.
  • Strap material feels a bit wanting, needs a more premium feel.

SPIN Safety and AVIP

POC was the first to introduce MIPS (Multi-Directional Impact Protection System) into their helmets. POC learned from it and developed its own silicone padding system called SPIN (Shearing Pads INside).

MIPS protects riders from multi-angled shocks via a thin plastic liner inside the helmet that can slide between 10° to 15° in all directions. The sliding action disperses the shock over a greater number of angles, reducing the amount of energy transferred to the brain.

SPIN works under similar principles, but instead of a plastic liner, POC created a patent-pending system of helmet pads that contain silicone inside them. They look identical to traditional padding until you touch them. The silicone within deforms and slides under force, which is how it deflects dangerous angled and rotational forces.

Safety is at the heart of everything POC does and is the basis for their AVIP philosophy.
AVIP stands for Attention, Visibility, Interaction and Protection

POC created an AVIP specific cycling collection in high-visibility colors. Their Zink Orange AVIP color is a perfect example and hard to miss.

Incredible Ventilation

POC has designed the Ventral Air SPIN using scientific Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) modeling to create an architecture that promotes airflow through the helmet’s vents and internal channels instead of over the top, which creates more drag.

Air intake and discharge are controlled at both high and low speeds, so you stay cool regardless if you are going uphill or down. The SPIN system requires no inner plastic liner which also boosts the helmet’s ventilation.

Once the air enters the front, it’s forced through internal channels, pushed through the helmet, over your head and out the rear vents. According to POC, controlling the airflow in this fashion creates a Venturi Effect which states that air speed increases as volume decreases. 

This boost in air speed means increased ventilation.

When the wind is coming from the side, it’s pushed over the top of the hard plastic shell instead of being disturbed inside. You don’t need a degree in physics to understand how this helmet works, it just does.

It even won a 2019 Design & Innovation award for its maximum airflow and minimum drag.

Great-Looking Design

Although POC puts the priority of safety over looks, the Ventral Air SPIN is super stylish. I love its clean lines. Viewed from the front, it’s more streamlined and less bulbous looking on my head than the Octal.

I particularly admire the rear of the helmet, formed from the built-up vents constructed to reduce turbulence as air exits the helmet. They look very cool and make me think of the back of a souped up drag racing car every time I see them.

Wearing a helmet is a choice, and the Ventral Air SPIN’s smart looks, innovative aerodynamics, elegant lines and integrated safety features have made it a lot easier for cyclists to not give a second thought to wearing one.

A helmet’s safety features are normally not what attracts people to it. It’s the design and how it looks on their head that prompts consumers into their choice. If a rider is lucky, crash protection is the one feature they may never need, but knowing it’s there brings peace of mind.

Optimized Body and Fit

The body of the Ventral Air SPIN is made from EPS foam (expandable polystyrene) and its density is optimized to provide the ideal balance between weight and crash protection.

The entire surface is wrapped in a hard plastic polycarbonate shell. Its smooth texture encourages sliding in the event of a crash and serves to maintain the helmet’s integrity under an impact.

The Ventral Air SPIN features a discrete, lightweight and 360° fully adjustable rear harness that cradles the head and assures a custom fit. It’s so slim it may leave you doubting. But once set, the helmet didn’t move at all nor pinch my head.

When you’re not wearing your glasses, park them in the helmet’s Eye Garage. An excellent feature, but I found my brand and model didn’t fit snugly because the space was too narrow. This is something to keep in mind depending on your helmet size and how it works for you.

The straps are comfortable but more slender than other brands at this price point. For its premium price, I’d like to see a superior material and feel such as the eco-leather used for the Kask Protone. However, I do like the fact that they are fully adjustable, sit flush to my face and are fixed to the helmet liner for extra comfort and security.

The POC Ventral Air SPIN is one of the most popular helmets on the market. It has a premium price point, but you’re paying for a stylish, lightweight, performance helmet with great airflow and first-rate safety.

What Others are Saying?

Perfection – for me, at least

This is by far the most comfortable helmet I have ever worn. Quite frankly, it completely disappears on my head when I’m riding. That is to say, it’s so comfortable in every way that I completely forget that I am wearing a helmet. It’s one of those things, like a saddle, where it might take a while to hone in on what works best for you, but when you find the right product, it goes *poof* and you never think about it again. For me, this helmet is like that.

Nick V, purchased from Competitive Cyclist

Nice!

Nice, cool and lightweight. This helmet fits me well with just a slight adjustment of the strap. My Rapha glasses fit well in the “garage.” I would definitely recommend

Marshall Y, purchased from Competitive Cyclist

Exceeded expectations

Purchasing something like a helmet online can be haphazard. However, after taking the plunge, my fit is outstanding, along with being the best ventilated helmet I have used; the straps do not irritate me like many past helmets. Quality is clearly observable

Steven V, purchased from Competitive Cyclist

How Much Does the POC Ventral Air SPIN Cost?

The POC Ventral Air SPIN retails for :

  • US Dollars : $250 (available from Competitive Cyclist)
  • British Pounds : £220 (available from Wiggle)
  • Australian Dollars : $399 (available from Pushys)
  • Euros : €250 (available from Wiggle)

POC Ventral Air SPIN Rating

  • Design and Aesthetics - 9/10
    9/10
  • Breathability - 9.5/10
    9.5/10
  • Fit and Comfort - 9/10
    9/10
  • Safety and Protection - 10/10
    10/10
  • Weight - 9/10
    9/10
9.3/10

Buy This If...

You want one of the most popular lightweight helmets on the market today. Its snazzy design is loaded with aerodynamics to keep you cool. SPIN silicone padding will protect you in the event of a crash. This helmet solves the problem of blending weight, design, comfort, rider safety and airflow in one package.

Alternatives to the POC Ventral Air SPIN

POC Omne Air

The Omne Air SPIN is another great-looking helmet from POC. It has similar features to the Ventral Air SPIN but in mid-range price point. The major difference in price is its weight, 305g in a size medium.

But they do share the same patent-pending SPIN system for improved rider safety, optimized EPS foam density by zone, easily adjustable straps molded into the helmet body, and their 360° size adjustment system to give you the perfect fit.

The helmet comes in four colors.

Giro Aether

The Giro Aether is an attractive, lightweight premium helmet with its own integrated MIPS-like safety if the POC shape isn’t for your head. The Aether’s Spherical Technology recreates the action of a MIPS liner and protects the brain from rotational forces that occur in a crash.

The Aether has 11 enormous vents that work with channels inside the helmet to circulate air efficiently over your entire head, something you’ll love when riding in hot weather. The Aether is available in 9 colors.