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Why aren't kids required to wear helmets in different disciplines?

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  • Why aren't kids required to wear helmets in different disciplines?

    Just as the title asks - why aren't helmets a requirement for kids who are riding in certain disciplines (i.e., western pleasure, rodeo, etc)? After a bit of checking, I was surprised to see that helmets are not even a requirement for many 4H clubs.

    We (daughter and I) aren't involved in any of the above riding disciplines, so I am curious as to the reasons why there is no mandatory helmet rule.

  • #2
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZKHTabTYl_M
    Approved helmet: Every time; every ride.
    "When a sport gets to be predictable it ceases to be fun." - RAR's wise brother

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    • #3
      I dont know, but its CRAZY! You'd think that every parent would make their kid wear a helmet.

      Not only do I want my child to be safe, but I also want to start a good routine and get them used to wearing one every.darn.time. I would feel naked without one now because Ive worn one every ride since I was 4.

      People 18 and up can make their own choices regarding their brains staying in their skull. Children shouldnt be allowed to make that choice.
      Charlie Brown (1994 bay TB X gelding)
      White Star (2004 grey TB gelding)

      Mystical Moment, 1977-2010.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Risk-Averse Rider View Post
        classic!

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        • #5
          About 10 years ago, my niece was interested in horses. So we investigated the county 4H club program, thinking that would be a good way to get her started. We went to one of their shows and there was not a helmet in sight. I asked the county extension agent why there was no helmet requirement. His reply: We could never get that through -- the parents would raise hell with us.

          I just didn't even know what to say.

          So, to answer your question, I have no idea. There isn't a helmet requirement for kids at our barn either. Drives me crazy.
          __________________________
          "... if you think i'm MAD, today, of all days,
          the best day in ten years,
          you are SORELY MISTAKEN, MY LITTLE ANCHOVY."

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          • #6
            My mom always told me it was illegal in GA to not wear a helmet if you were under 18... Upon further research, I have now learned that my mom lied to me all those years to force me to wear a helmet. Thank god because I'm sure I'd be dead by now if I hadn't...

            I swear though, until just now I really thought it was the law...
            Southern Cross Guest Ranch
            An All Inclusive Guest Ranch Vacation - Georgia

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            • #7
              It has everything to do with the culture of the people surrounding each breed and discipline. There really isn't any rhyme nor reason to it either but tradition has a lot to do with it. I sure don't agree with it anymore having recently had a couple of rough accidents myself and now I wear a helmet the majority of my rides but i still have trouble crossing that line myself when it comes to my breed and our show ring attire.
              ...don't sh** where you eat...

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              • #8
                honestly when riding western or saddleseat (though it has been awhile since I rode saddleseat) it feels odd to wear a helmet, and I have nothing against helmets

                though in NC 4-H has mandated that all riders must wear a helmet when mounted regardless of age or discipline

                at shows it depends on the show organizer or the governing body of the association as to helmet rules

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                • #9
                  In our state (NC) ALL 4-Hrs MUST WEAR A HELMET it is now a rule, western, saddleseat, huntseat etc
                  www.shawneeacres.net

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by OveroHunter View Post
                    My mom always told me it was illegal in GA to not wear a helmet if you were under 18... Upon further research, I have now learned that my mom lied to me all those years to force me to wear a helmet. Thank god because I'm sure I'd be dead by now if I hadn't...

                    I swear though, until just now I really thought it was the law...
                    My mother told me the exact same thing! Except for Alabama. I just got very excited to see someone else's mother did this to them...
                    Now, did anyone's mother make them go "bunny-fishing" so they could get a dressage ride in?


                    But in all seriousness, I think that many organizations are beginning to see a change, and are abandoning tradition for safety.

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                    • #11
                      All of my students wear helmets until they are 18! I teach WP and Beg Int English, No Jumping. Its a rule to wear thier helmets until they are 18 or parental consent is given at 16 with a signed waiver.

                      I was brought up WP...ie No Helmet. It is still hard for me to make myself wear one. Its just what I grew up being taught. My daughter will be 2 in July and she wears a helmet everytime she rides.
                      Boomer's Hopes & Dreams
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                      Tia - The Rescue
                      RIP Boomer - May 21, 1989 - November 3, 2010

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                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Perhaps if the venues where these shows are taking place make helmets a requirement (perhaps as a protection against lawsuits?) things would change more rapidly.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I grew up riding Saddle Seat with nary a helmet in sight. I rember that the helmet rule got implemented in NY 4-H the last year or two I was involved. I've always been a "It's your choice" person, and didn't stat wearing one myself until about 3 or 4 years ago.

                          Recently I've noticed that it has become ingrained in me, and nowadays I get that instinctive "OMG no helmet" reaction when I see someone out riding bareheaded. So, there's proof that it can be trained into a person even without suffering serious consequences.

                          I can't believe I'm becoming a helmet supporter!
                          ::Sometimes you have to burn a few bridges to keep the crazies from following you::

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                          • #14
                            4-H here requires helmets, even in showmanship. You do see helmets in gaming, but that is due to parent's choice not requirements.
                            Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!

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                            • #15
                              my barn requires it because their insurance company requires it.

                              (and it's all riders, not just juniors.)
                              ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                              Today I will be happier than a bird with a french fry.

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                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Carolinadreamin' View Post
                                Just as the title asks - why aren't helmets a requirement for kids who are riding in certain disciplines (i.e., western pleasure, rodeo, etc)? After a bit of checking, I was surprised to see that helmets are not even a requirement for many 4H clubs.

                                We (daughter and I) aren't involved in any of the above riding disciplines, so I am curious as to the reasons why there is no mandatory helmet rule.
                                4-H is getting it together state by state. Utah and Ohio require helmets for all, as does Kentucky (see below) —

                                The Kentucky 4-H Horse Program REQUIRES all 4-H’ers to wear protective headgear passing or surpassing current applicable ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials)/SEI (Safety Equipment Institute) standards with harness securely fastened and helmet properly fitted on top of the head while riding or driving during County, District and State 4-H Horse Program events and activities. This includes, but is not limited to: 4- H Horse Shows, 4-H Horsemanship Camps, 4-H Trail Rides, 4-H Horse Drill Teams, etc.

                                Any rider violating this rule at any time (no helmet, helmet flies off rider’s head and hits the ground or hangs on the neck) will be immediately prohibited from further riding or driving until such headgear is properly in place.
                                "Go on, Bill — this is no place for a pony."

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                                • #17
                                  Thankfully Maryland 4-H is now on board with helmets for all disciplines as well.
                                  I'm good at being uncomfortable so I can't stop changing all the time -Fiona Apple, Extraordinary Machine
                                  If I were your appendages, I'd hold open your eyes so you would see- Incubus

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                                  • #18
                                    I don't know, but I also see a LOT of kids riding around on bicycles (on busy roads, with no shoulder) with no helmets either. I don't think it's limited to horse sports.
                                    -Debbie / NH

                                    My Blog: http://deborahsulli.blogspot.com/

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                                    • #19
                                      There was a story on the news last night about a little girl who was recently killed in a fall while barrel racing at a rodeo. She was 12 or 13, I think, and apparently not wearing a helmet. IMO, ALL minors competing in rodeo events should have helmets required. Too bad the rodeo organizations apparently care more about the rodeo queen and cowboy image than about safety!

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        When I was growing up, it was never brought up for our own use. Daddy had a hard and fast rule-no jumping, and only jumpers wore helmets in our world. No one I knew wore helmets. I had never even seen one up close! It took a long time until I saw the benefits of helmets ( I was in my late 30's). It drives my girls nuts, and no I don't force them to wear them all the time, on some horses (I know, I know...)but on some horses, like the EPM, and the spooky Saddlebred she rides, or anything that is not Rocky or Renegade really, they have to wear a helmet. My youngest got thrown so hard the little metal piece on her bra strap bruised her, and she told me she was glad that she had a helmet on since she did bang her head.
                                        http://community.webshots.com/album/548368465RfewoU[/url]

                                        She may not have changed the stars from their courses, but she loved a good man, and she rode good horses….author unknown

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