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Helmets are overrated?

May 19, 2016, 12:35 p.m.
Posts: 840
Joined: Nov. 18, 2015

Those who speak out against helmets or try to minimize their value in the moment of need clearly dont have friends who have been in extended comas from hitting their hard as a result of crashing on their bike even while wearing helmets. Dead if they did not. I dont mean to be dramatic but this isnt a game.

I have two friends who had to relearn how to walk.
I have two friends who had to have their spouses wipe their asses everyday while they were in a coma.
I have two friends who have permanent learning/memory/movement impediments due to their riding crashes.
And I have two friends who will likely die if they hit their head badly again.

Wear your f'ing helmets.

May 19, 2016, 1:09 p.m.
Posts: 333
Joined: Dec. 21, 2008

conflating mtb and transportation/road riding when thinking about safety is stupid

include mtb related crashes and injuries and we have the worst safety record in canada. exclude them and we have among the best. ignore the math at your own peril

So are you trying to make the case that it is safe to road ride without a helmet? If so then I would say that ignoring the math is far less perilous than believing it! The risk may be lower than for mountain biking but it is certainly not zero. What are the downsides of wearing a helmet on the road? None as far as I am concerned.

May 19, 2016, 1:17 p.m.
Posts: 5635
Joined: Oct. 28, 2008

People are arguing AGAINST wearing helmets? What is this, 1972? Are seatbelts a bad idea too?

Wrong. Always.

May 19, 2016, 2:16 p.m.
Posts: 27
Joined: Sept. 12, 2011

First day ever riding "downhill" with a full face helmet and crashed hard OTB within the first 10 minutes of the ride. Kept the helmet because of the mighty 6" gouge the rock left through the plastic in that helmet….. Day 1 lesson 1: Wear your helmet

May 19, 2016, 2:37 p.m.
Posts: 642
Joined: June 8, 2005

But my hair will get messed up.

Really, I couldn't imagine not wearing a helmet when mtn biking. Even riding without a camelbak makes me nervous and feels exposed.

Last summer I was riding to work and was running late and was tired, and forgot to put my helmet on. Something felt funny, took 3 blocks to figure it out.

A helmet will not always be able to help or save someone in a serious impact but I think it is safe to say it increases your odds.

Look at it this way - If you are going to ride you bike into a vehicle moving at highway speed, a helmet is all but useless, but a smaller impact of going OTB and hitting your head the helmet is likely to have a very real impact on how much protect it will offer. Could be the difference between a concussion or not, or perhaps just a concussion (not trying to minimize concussions) vs a very serious brain injury or death.

That said, I can't recall ever seeing anyone being ticketed for not wearing a helmet, so to each their own if it was just their injury. However we are all stuck with a part of the cost for our medical system, so I say, just wear your damn helmet.

May 19, 2016, 3:02 p.m.
Posts: 168
Joined: Dec. 30, 2004

isn't just someone's personnel choice ?

extra health care costs are borne by all for personnel choices ranging from foods we eat to exercise we do to smoking and drinking…this isnt really any different.

someone wants to risk become a vegetable, paralyzed or dead it still their choice.

May 19, 2016, 3:13 p.m.
Posts: 5635
Joined: Oct. 28, 2008

someone wants to risk become a vegetable, paralyzed or dead it still their choice.

NOT ON MY DIME, BITCH!

;)

Wrong. Always.

May 19, 2016, 3:42 p.m.
Posts: 354
Joined: June 11, 2013

Funny thing is . . . .I hear from fewer and fewer people that 'helmets are not necessary'. I guess they aren't around to say so anymore.

May 19, 2016, 3:47 p.m.
Posts: 5738
Joined: May 28, 2005

So are you trying to make the case that it is safe to road ride without a helmet? If so then I would say that ignoring the math is far less perilous than believing it! The risk may be lower than for mountain biking but it is certainly not zero. What are the downsides of wearing a helmet on the road? None as far as I am concerned.

i'm ambivalent about it

i think that helmets, on a number of counts, depress rates of cycling activity - the "but it will mess up my hair" issue is a canard; and whatever we may think of people who don't/won't ride because they have to wear a helmet isn't really important. helmts definitely don't reduce collision rates - and while they (marginally) reduce rates of head injuries among those who suffer collisions, they don't reduce rates of serious injury and hospitalization overall

increase cycling rates do impact safety, unequivocally, by reducing collision rates - see my second slide on the previous page

my attitude towards helmets is that personally i think they're a good idea, and i almost always wear one. for other people, i say wear one (on the road) if it makes you feel better - but if you're not going to ride if you have to wear one, then do ride and don't wear one, definitely: at both the public and individual level, cycling has a much higher health benefit that it poses an injury risk. personally, and as a country, the benefits outweigh the risks between 10 and 100 to 1

plus there are, at all levels, things that you/we can do that will have a much bigger impact on cyclist safety. effectively encouraging more people to ride bikes and building better infrastructure will keep cyclists much safer than mandating helmet use. at an individual level, good route choice (i.e. ride on a bike lane or quiet street vs. riding on an arterial) will have an exponentially higher impact on your personal safety than wearing a helmet does

finally, consider: motorists and pedestrians receive the same, if not greater, benefits to head-safety from wearing helmets as do cyclists. knowing that, are you going to put on a helmet when you go for a walk, or get behind the wheel of a car?

"Nobody really gives a shit that you don't like the thing that you have no firsthand experience with." Dave

May 19, 2016, 5:25 p.m.
Posts: 39
Joined: Dec. 15, 2014

Just curious if said helmetless rider has kids and if he thinks they are "overrated" for them as well?

May 19, 2016, 5:44 p.m.
Posts: 955
Joined: Oct. 23, 2006

People are arguing AGAINST wearing helmets? What is this, 1972? Are seatbelts a bad idea too?

Never once needed a seatbelt, but still wear one every time and hate it when I'm crammed into a truck without one.

Have written off 5 helmets though. Maybe I'm doing it wrong? Thankfully no concussions, so I must be one of the lucky ones with a small brain in a large space. Oh wait…

I'm actually surprised some of you commenting here have not yet hit your head. Even my wife who never crashes cracked a helmet the first season I got her off road. Also know a couple of people personally who have long term issues from concussions.

May 19, 2016, 7:04 p.m.
Posts: 8
Joined: Aug. 20, 2010

People are arguing AGAINST wearing helmets? What is this, 1972? Are seatbelts a bad idea too?

I feel it is safer to be thrown clear of the vehicle…

May 19, 2016, 7:14 p.m.
Posts: 1
Joined: Sept. 1, 2010

I feel it is safer to be thrown clear of the vehicle…

There's always a judgement as to where to draw the line. I'm guessing not too many people here wear helmets when driving their cars, but I'm pretty sure it would be safer. Especially if you get thrown clear of the vehicle.

May 19, 2016, 8:12 p.m.
Posts: 815
Joined: March 13, 2004

I would be dead or in a vegetative state if I didn't ride with a helmet. I've had concussions from crashes even with my helmet on.

May 19, 2016, 8:31 p.m.
Posts: 1273
Joined: Sept. 30, 2006

There's always a judgement as to where to draw the line. I'm guessing not too many people here wear helmets when driving their cars, but I'm pretty sure it would be safer. Especially if you get thrown clear of the vehicle.

How does one get thrown clear of a vehicle with a seatbelt on? Im sure it CAN happen, but the odds must by extremely low…

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