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Why we wear helmets - chapter 21456....

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  • Why we wear helmets - chapter 21456....

    Took my baby horse to his first dressage show this morning. He was doing great, warming up nicely. We were trotting along when he caught the edge of a hoofprint divot in the sand and went down on his knees with his nose in the dirt. I lawn darted right into the sand myself head first. He managed not to step on me when he got up. Trotted a few steps away and looked back at me like "Wha????". My trusty helmet did its job - I have sore neck and shoulders and a bit of a headache but I am here! So disappointed we weren't able to ride our test but there will be another day.

    This is at least the third time a helmet has saved me from serious injury since I started wearing them 25 years ago.

    Preaching to the choir BUT EVERY RIDE, EVERY TIME!!!!
    Click image for larger version  Name:	dirty helmet.jpg Views:	1 Size:	8.7 KB ID:	10388033

    ETA: Yes, I ordered a replacement tonight. This one is retiring!

  • #2
    YES. Well done! I have many friends who ride other disciplines who refuse to wear helmets, especially if the horse is decently broke. I always just think that even the greatest horse can trip and fall, at any gait, and the physics of being so high off the ground mean we will usually dart.

    I work in an industry that takes PPE requirements very seriously, though, so i have never seen wearing a helmet or hard hat as some source of shame like some of the cowboys and backyardies seem to.
    "I once heard a client ask our vet if a horse's brain was as small as everyone says they are. Without pause, the vet smiled and answered: 'Maybe, but have you seen their hearts?'" --Alice Peirce

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    • #3
      It'll make a nice bird house or planter

      I know of at least four distinct times that brain bucket saved my life or at least kept me out of a wheelchair.
      <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.

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      • #4
        It's well worth repeating! Over and over again!

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        • #5
          I see so many people around here riding without helmets. They’re just riding around the neighborhood, often over pavement with rocks on one side and a drop on the other. A shudder to think what would happen if something spooked one of the horses. I was always told to wear a helmet no matter what, even if it was just a couple of laps of walking around the ring. Twice I came off and not only landed with my head but ran into a fence/jump standard with my head. Both times I walked away fine. I’ll never ride without one.

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          • #6
            Most people around here don’t wear helmets. Everyone uses horses for ranch work, hunting etc.

            I'll admit I don’t wear a helmet as much as I use to. My last incident I had my horse go straight up in the air then flip over on me. You could see on my helmet where my head dug into the ground, he got up and stepped on my lower leg too.


            What about colt starters and all these western riders? Do you think they will ever start wearing helmets? My husband refuses to. Now he does use tapaderos because he has a fear of being dragged to death, happened to a close friend of his so it hits close to home for him but still won’t wear a helmet.

            whats even scarier is seeing little kids around here being over horsed with no helmets
            https://www.instagram.com/streamlinesporthorses/

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            • #7
              Daughter came off jumping cross country when horse stumbled- helmet CRACKED over temple. She would have been dead without a helmet

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              • #8
                Helmets have saved me at least twice. I never, ever get on any horse w/o one. Well, once. That horse very nearly went over backwards with me on her. That was it. Never, ever again.

                I will never forget going to EquiFest in Kansas many years ago. Pat Parelli was there. A rider came in wearing a helmet, and he actually turned to the audience and said, "The only reason you'd wear a helmet is if you can't ride." It was clear he wanted the rider to take it off. To her credit, she did not.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Alex and Bodie's Mom View Post
                  I will never forget going to EquiFest in Kansas many years ago. Pat Parelli was there. A rider came in wearing a helmet, and he actually turned to the audience and said, "The only reason you'd wear a helmet is if you can't ride." It was clear he wanted the rider to take it off. To her credit, she did not.

                  People like that are seriously the worst. Look, I may not agree with your decision to not wear a helmet but I'll respect that adults have the right to make that choice for themselves. But under absolutely no circumstances whatsoever should you ever dare to actually discourage someone from choosing to wear a helmet. That's just being an awful human being, let alone being an awful horseman. No one is less of a rider because they wear a helmet, or any other safety gear, and to suggest that is just plain stupid.

                  I wear a helmet not because I don't trust my own riding abilities or because I don't trust my horse, but because I really just don't trust the ground to not hurt me.

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                  • #10
                    I would feel so naked without one! Then again my head actually cringes when I see people driving by in convertibles... I feel like they should be wearing helmets too for some reason??

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                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      I confess... when I started riding again 10 years ago, I was only around dressage people, so helmets were pretty normal. Moved to an Arab show barn and nobody but me and the kids wear a helmet. Also, main ring people generally do not wear helmets. It took some getting used to, and I don't say anything about it, but I'm not a fan. But... as they are all adults, it is really none of my business.

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                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Originally posted by Alex and Bodie's Mom View Post

                        I will never forget going to EquiFest in Kansas many years ago. Pat Parelli was there. A rider came in wearing a helmet, and he actually turned to the audience and said, "The only reason you'd wear a helmet is if you can't ride." It was clear he wanted the rider to take it off. To her credit, she did not.
                        Another reason to dislike him

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by oldernewbie View Post

                          Another reason to dislike him
                          EXACTLY!!!!

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                          • #14
                            Here people jump without a helmet 😳😳. I’ve had one fall that I’m sure I wouldn’t have survived without my helmet, fell off into a concrete wall, you could see where I hit my head by looking at the helmet. Man, that was an expensive fall, second time wearing the helmet (a KEP) and last time wearing it!

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                            • #15
                              Fell and hit my head HARD on a concrete pad when my horse spooked while I was trying to get on him. He took me for a bit of a ride with one foot in the stirrup before I fell down. I would have probably ended up with a really bad concussion had I not been wearing a helmet. Lord knows it was bad enough with it on.

                              I never, ever get one a horse without one. If some carrot stick wielding "trainer" says that makes me a bad rider/horseman then so be it.
                              Talking to some people is like folding a fitted sheet.

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                              • #16
                                "The only reason you'd wear a helmet is if you can't ride."
                                What a dufus. I'd rather be someone "who can't ride" than someone with a TBI.
                                Having had a few concussions while wearing a helmet, I don't want to think about the outcome of a fall without one.

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                                • #17
                                  Seven or eight years ago Mr. Squirrel and I were in Colorado Springs and decided to ride at the rental stable next to the Garden of the Gods.

                                  The stables had helmets and we both took one. In our group it was just us and two others, both early 20's young men, who had helmets.

                                  Before the ride the guide went over the safety rules and said they had helmets for anyone who wanted one but that it was just the beginner riders who wear them. The two young men put their helmets back on the rack.

                                  Mr. Squirrel and I were the best riders in the group and that included the guide...

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                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Suspiria View Post
                                    YES. Well done! I have many friends who ride other disciplines who refuse to wear helmets, especially if the horse is decently broke. I always just think that even the greatest horse can trip and fall, at any gait, and the physics of being so high off the ground mean we will usually dart..
                                    A video came across my Facebook feed celebrating a disabled rider who is apparently a successful competitive barrel racer. And all I could think was why the ever living *** aren't you wearing a helmet??? Such a selfish decision. I refrained from commenting as I doubted it would be well received

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                                    • #19
                                      A friend and I went on a trail ride in the mountains in northern Spain. Both of us had helmets. This was the source of comment and humour from the guide, a young man, and his girl friend. They knew the horses and the horses were well trained for the job. Friend and I just smiled and kept the helmets. However, during the ride, a metal gate fell onto the girlfriends horse as she was passing through a gateway. Her horse, unsurprisingly, was badly spooked and ran off down a rocky stream bed with the rider dragged along with her foot caught in the stirrup. By a complete miracle she was not injured, being short enough not to crash her head on the rocks. Given the good nature and training of the horses, the fright was quickly resolved. We went out again the next day. The girl friend was also riding again - with two large black eyes - but now with a helmet and a fixed conviction she would never, ever ride without one again.
                                      "Good young horses are bred, but good advanced horses are trained" Sam Griffiths

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                                      • #20
                                        As long as you are not on my horse or my property, it is certainly an adult's decision. However, having had the sad misfortune of caring for a loved one with a TBI, choosing to ride without a helmet seems like arrogant disregard for the people who love you.

                                        The disability-the difficulties and the plain hard work that go along with taking care of a wheelchair bound paralyzed adult, and the profound loss of lifestyle-is always present. The sadness never goes completely away-it always hovers, even in happy moments. It sucks the air out of a household. I was glad I could help my mother take care of my father, and we were glad to still have him with us, but seeing him trapped inside his body like he was bruised our hearts to the core.

                                        If you can do something so simple as put a helmet on to diminish the chance of sustaining that kind of harm, why would you not?

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