A helmet assembly (20) for protecting a head and neck by laterally displacing impact forces (28). The helmet assembly (20) has a helmet (22) and a face guard (26). The helmet (22) has a rigid inner shell (96), a resilient spacing layer (94) outside of and in contact with the inner shell (96), an articulated shell (76) having a plurality of discrete rigid segments (78) disposed outside of and in contact with the resilient spacing layer (94), and a resilient outer shell (24) made of foam covered by an flexible protective layer (112). The face guard (26) has a plurality of transverse bars (36) with a longitudinal bar (38) down the center. The face guard (26) has shock absorbers (46) integrated on the lowermost transverse bar (36).