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  1. #21
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    I don't care what the pros think. I do think they push products because that's how you get sponsors, so their opinions I discount. I think the opinions of EMT's who pick up 89 percent of the eventing membership out there competing BN-T are more compelling to me. The EMT's sure aren't sponsored by Point-Two.
    "Passion, though a bad regulator, is a powerful spring." -- Emerson
    www.eventhorse.wordpress.com


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  2. #22
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    Well we will have to agree to disagree on regarding what pros think. I give my trainers more credit than that.

    Quote Originally Posted by retreadeventer View Post
    I don't care what the pros think. I do think they push products because that's how you get sponsors, so their opinions I discount. I think the opinions of EMT's who pick up 89 percent of the eventing membership out there competing BN-T are more compelling to me. The EMT's sure aren't sponsored by Point-Two.



  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by ahbaumgardner View Post
    It's the same reason I wear a helmet. I've wacked my head very hard in the past and my sense was that if I hadn't worn a helmet, I would've been seriously hurt.
    But there is more than opinion and anecdote to back up helmet use -- there is actually excellent testing and epidemiological data to show that use of a properly fitting helmet reduces head injury, which is the most common form of serious equestrian injury.


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  4. #24
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    I don't wear an airvet, I want more research.. but that's besides the point!

    A lovely woman came to try my mare the other day and had an air vest. I thought it was great that she was taking safety measures, especially on my crazy mare! (just kidding she's a peach). I did think though, "omg, if that vest deploys is my mare going to loose it and run away and never come back?" hahaha



  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meredith Clark View Post
    I don't wear an airvet, I want more research.. but that's besides the point!

    A lovely woman came to try my mare the other day and had an air vest. I thought it was great that she was taking safety measures, especially on my crazy mare! (just kidding she's a peach). I did think though, "omg, if that vest deploys is my mare going to loose it and run away and never come back?" hahaha
    Ya never know when you try a new horse. We had a guy come out his wife to try a horse a couple moths ago. They kept asking if the horse tried. The guys face was a mess, terribly swollen with a huge bruise and stiches on one side. Turns out the day before they had gone to look at a horse and they asked "does it tie?" response "sure. Look" the owner proceeded to tie the horse to something made of wood, horse immediately sat back, broke the thing and the broken off part hit the poor guy in the face.



  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by retreadeventer View Post
    Appsolute-- there is no evidence falls out on XC are more serious. I know someone walking a dressage horse from the mounting block who ended up with a severe, life threatening, family-rip-apart in debt for life head injury. Your ticket can be punched ANYTIME, anywhere. I think the warmup is about the most dangerous place of any horse trial grounds.
    Do you wear an air vest EVERY time you are mounted? I do wear a helmet every time I am mounted. I would like to see some research regarding vests.

    (I am a survivor of a traumatic brain injury that would have resulted in death had I not been wearing a helmet – caused by a rotational fall on cross country)



  7. #27
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  8. #28
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    Clayton appeared to be quite okay following his inflation-free fall.

    I'd like to see some persuasive evidence that inflatables make injuries less likely or severe. However, the kinetics of trauma in XC falls are such that an inflatable anything is unlikely to alleviate or prevent serious injuries. A P2 correctly-deployed fall might 'hurt less' but that's about it. It won't do anything for axial- or torsional-loading injuries, for example.

    FWIW, I'm an EMT.


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  9. #29
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    The number of falls in eventing cross country per year is very small when considering the numbers needed for statistical analyses.

    What research is feasible and what do people want to see? If someone can come up with a research design that is do-able, then go for it. And of course, we can't subject riders and horses to falls via experimental methodology.

    I have yet to hear of an injury caused by an air vest but that seems to be the argument against them... And if someone were injured by a vest, I am sure we'd hear about it.




  10. #30
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    There have been numerous threads and suggestions (even a visit from a Point Two rep) about the appropriate models and tests that would be needed. A search will locate them quickly for you.

    More to the point, it isn't the consumer's job to design safety/injury testing for a product that is already being sold and heavily marketed as a safety device. That responsibility lies with the manufacturer. In fact, P2 doesn't need to design the testing, merely fund it, as there are labs available to hire for such a purpose. They don't care because, apparently, plenty of people will buy them based on anecdote and hero worship.


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  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by ahbaumgardner View Post
    ...I have yet to hear of an injury caused by an air vest but that seems to be the argument against them... And if someone were injured by a vest, I am sure we'd hear about it.


    You have heard about them. Faith Cooke, Karen O'Conner, etc. all have spine injuries potentially aggravated by the design and deployment of air vests. I have explained how and why these fractures would be more likely with an air vest than without. I have even had these discussions with test engineers with P2.

    As for research, EMSA is trying to work out how to effectively conduct said research, including epidemiological studies based on incident reports from USEF (there is explicit instructions to note if an air vest was deployed in falls).

    At the air vest symposium at the USEA convention there was significant discussion, including Lee Middleton (CEO of P2), Roy Burek (CEO of CO), etc. as to how, what and why needs to be done to better define the role and efficacy of air vests and to get away from anecdotes.


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  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by RAyers View Post
    You have heard about them. Faith Cooke, Karen O'Conner, etc. all have spine injuries potentially aggravated by the design and deployment of air vests.
    But were they? This reminds me of those critics of helmets from years ago, who argued that the helmet could damage the base of the spine. Like I said in another post, I had a dressage trainer in the 80s who was against helmets for this very reason.



  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by ahbaumgardner View Post
    But were they? This reminds me of those critics of helmets from years ago, who argued that the helmet could damage the base of the spine. Like I said in another post, I had a dressage trainer in the 80s who was against helmets for this very reason.
    Put it this way, the injuries are consistent with the boy being forced into ridged position upon impact resulting in axial compressive forces, e.g. what you can see in certain automobile impacts and injuries soldiers incur as the result of their body armor. These are not injuries as the result of head or vertical impact.

    Back in the 1980s, safety engineering, orthopaedics, and our understanding of impact biomechanics was crap. And I am not a dressage trainer.


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  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by retreadeventer View Post
    Ait is anecdotal of course but it is enough for me.
    Anecdotes are absolutely not enough for me. Or most people with a working knowledge of statistics, the physics of accidents, and the understanding levels of involved parties. There's research behind my helmet. A lot. There's some testing behind my conventional vest and the model of deformable foam safety devices in an impact in general.

    And I highly doubt these EMT's are recording data and analyzing it for trends. There is such a thing as spurious correlation. If more people WEAR air vests, they will see more vests deployed during falls, but have no way of knowing whether further injury was prevented by that or the conventional vest. Neither do we.

    Extensive test designs have been proposed. By someone who can fart sunshine AND understand the concept of correct R&D. How much clearer do we need to be?


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  15. #35
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    Given that EMTs are familiar with testing and protocols and safety, most EMTs and paramedics would be quite surprised -- stunned, even -- that air jackets are unproven, untested and unregulated.


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  16. #36
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    I guess I'm still wondering about the original question. So much so that I sent an email to Team Fredericks to see if Clayton knows.......



  17. #37
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    I of course want the research. Duh. But in the absence of research, I am totally willing to hedge my bets and go with something that looks like it works, and has a ton of self-report, and anecdotal evidence. I would rather live than die and I will wear the vest based on what evidence I have.

    The Mattes pad I have also doesn't have much research behind it. Well, I still use it. It seems like it works and yes, I'd like to have research support but I am willing to go with something that seems like it works.

    As for those people who were injured by air vests, I am wondering if they are settling out of court. I would guess that they are getting a hefty settlement.


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  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by JER View Post
    Given that EMTs are familiar with testing and protocols and safety, most EMTs and paramedics would be quite surprised -- stunned, even -- that air jackets are unproven, untested and unregulated.
    The ones I spoke with know but told me that they have seen enough falls that they believe that the vest is a good investment.



  19. #39
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    I know we always end up worrying about research and studies whenever the airvest technology questions come up. As the daughter of a test engineer, I am pretty much driven in my opinions by science and technology as are the most learned among us here.

    But....

    I have, in my lifetime, had three close friends killed by horses. Two were within the last 10 years - dear friends, one death of whom I witnessed, on a public racetrack, the other's death as a result of working with a horse I had serious misgivings about, and begged her to get rid of, prior to her accident.

    All the science and studies in the world didn't help them. In fact, all the safety equipment known to man may not have helped any of them. One thing with horses that I have learned. You cannot predict what they will do and what might happen. I know that I - and you - could also be in the wrong place at the wrong time, and I pray everyday that will not happen to anyone I know.

    If the equipment is out there and can give you a chance you should use it. Helmets continue to evolve -- they knew before they did the tests in the 80's that helmets saved lives -- and they have continued to improve them and create better more protective helmets. 30 years ago I had an instructor who insisted all of her students had to wear helmets with a harness attached. Long before harness helmets were required. We knew they were safer with the strap. We didn't need tests and rules.

    I think it's the same with the airvest. I think they will get better and more protective and eventually I have faith that the proper research will be done, and that will help them create an even better product. But in the meantime I think they work for what we do when we fall from a horse. I've seen them in action many times, as have the EMT's with whom I've discussed the issue, and we agree they are positive. That's what I mean by "anecdotal".
    "Passion, though a bad regulator, is a powerful spring." -- Emerson
    www.eventhorse.wordpress.com


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  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by ahbaumgardner View Post
    The Mattes pad I have also doesn't have much research behind it.
    Is the Mattes pad marketed as a safety product?

    Big difference there.


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