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A very sad, not wearing a helmet story

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  • Responsibility and personal freedoms

    If an adult with no children chooses not to wear a helmet, then that's their decision and their right.

    If they have chosen to spawn, then IMO they are not ONLY responsible for their own health and safety but that of their offspring. One has to weigh their own personal desires/needs with that of the children they are responsible for and produced till said children are old enough to care for themselves. So to me it's a no-brainer-- adults with kids should take xtra care of themselves when it is possible to insure that they will be able to provide for their kids. Wearing a helmet is a simple thing to do when you are pursuing a potentially dangerous activity where there is a higher probablity that you could fall and suffer a head injury.

    This is how I feel about it-- but I realize you can't change some people's minds.

    BTW-- I do not have children BUT I wear a helmet!


    • I won't tell others what to do, but I never get on a horse without a helmet. I knew someone -- a lifelong rider -- who died from a head injury incurred from a fall off of an otherwise quiet mount. She went on a trail ride and opted not to wear a helmet on that day. The horse spooked, bucked her off, and she landed on a rock. Apparently it was not a pretty scene. The paramedics said that she likely would have been fine, had she been wearing a helmet. Very sad.
      In loving memory of Chutney (1977 - 2008)


      • Originally posted by shireluver View Post
        Honestly, I am a pony tail, no make-up, jeans and T-shirt kind of girl. No hair-do here.

        I just think that freedom of choice is important, and the arguement about it being sooo dangerous is just goofy. As County pointed out, most head injuries in cars could be prevented with helmets. Do you wear a helmet in your car? I can almost guarantee that many people here spend more time in their car then on their horse. Also, the amount of car accident deaths due to head injuries is probably a lot higher then the amount of horse related deaths due to head injuries.
        Wow. that is about The most senseless argument I have ever heard...

        The reason we were seatbelts in car, and not helmets is studies have shown that SEATBELTS offer the most protection in an AUTOMOBILE accident.

        In the equine world, Studies have PROVEN that HELMETS offer the most protecion in an accident.

        AS you mentioned, the freedom of choice is tremendously important, and I CHOOSE to head the advice of those who are far more educated in that field than I.

        best of Luck to you....:/


        • Actually studies have shown the reason the majority wear seatbelts is because if not and there caught they have to pay a fine. Without that fine most wouldn't care about wearing them. Has there ever been a study done to see if the majority of horse riders wear helmets? In all honesty very very few of the ones I see do.
          Quality doesn\'t cost it pays.


          • For the life of me I can't understand why some of these people care whether County wears a helmet or not. What impact does it make on your life? Is your universe going to be out of whack unless he caves and agrees to wear one? I don't give a crap if an adult someone is a helmet user or not. However, I do agree that children should always wear a helmet when mounted. I wear one most of the time but don't force my decision on someone else; and yes, I've taken a bit of ribbing from my more traditional cowboy friends but so what.

            So so sorry for this little girl and her family. What a tragedy.
            Yogurt - If you're so cultured, how come I never see you at the opera? Steven Colbert


            • Originally posted by county View Post
              Actually studies have shown the reason the majority wear seatbelts is because if not and there caught they have to pay a fine. Without that fine most wouldn't care about wearing them. Has there ever been a study done to see if the majority of horse riders wear helmets? In all honesty very very few of the ones I see do.
              And why do you suppose it is actually a law that people wear seatbelts in the car? Do you have any idea how much insurance premiums have skyrocketed to cover those that choose NOT to take protection against an accident?

              Why should I have to pay for someone else's ignorance of both their own well-being, not to mention the law?


              • Helmets and seatbelts both provide a false sense of security. Both provide a *little* extra protection, but accidents, including fatal ones still happen all the time even when helmets and seatbelts are worn/used. Don't believe for one minute that a helmet is the absolute safety net when working around or riding a horse. Same as a seatbelt in a car. Not true at all. Oh yes, it may provide protection from *minor* spills or accidents, but when something major happens, no piece of equipment will protect you. We read all too often of the tragic accidents eventers out there who suffer life threatening injuries and even death. They wear more protection than the H/J folks and the extra gear didn't save them, did it?

                I believe we all need to just be more careful and watchful in our life. Car accidents happen all the time to people who are not paying attention, same with horsefolks. The worse injuries can happen when you let your guard down, helemt or not, seatbelt or not.
                Secretplace Farm - Raising fine paint hunters since 1987


                • Well,

                  You folks can certainly make your own decisions, and while I may not agree, I will respect it.

                  With that, I WILL choose to wear both a helmet and a seatbelt...(not at the same time!)
                  If it offers me even a smidge of protection, that is the least I can do for my Parents, my fiancee, and of course, my horse! My life is worth at least that....


                  • I realize studies have shown that something like 80% of serious riding injuries are head injuries. I believe that, and while I usually didn't wear a helmet while schooling my old horse (but I do on trails), I DO feel a bit guilty about it. However, I still have seen NOTHING making a comparison of the % of injuries suffered by western vs. english riders. Seriously: Other than endurance riders, if you wish to class them as "western," how often do you see a western rider - reiner/cutter/WP wearing a protective helmet? About the only "cowboys" who do are bull riders and not all of them do (but they are a very special macho macho case and not an apt comparison for the every day rider). So... do THAT many more western riders end up veggies (sorry!) than english from their helmetless riding? Or are they so much better than us that they never come off? Or???? I'm not making an argument for or against, just curious that if this is SUCH an issue ("every time, every ride") whether the Western riders are filling our long-term care facilities and hospitals.


                    • Western vs. English

                      As simple as it may sound, I do believe a lot comes down to the diiferences in the two disciplnes...

                      The obvious difference would be the amount of flat work, vs. the amount of jumping that English riders do. If a reigning horse were to 'stop' the result would be an 'endo' up over the head, on to the soft surface of the arena...If a level 5 jumpers were to stop, the results could very well be fatal. I KNOW there are instances when Western Riding can be as dangerous, but the majority of Western Riding is done on the flat.

                      Another difference, and I am putting on my flame suit, is the type of horse they are most often riding. Good Old Fashioned American Quarter Horses. Sturdy, Sensible and Steady as she goes. Not usually spooky, or silly.

                      Take a high-strung jumper that just heard the judge sneeze, and you might be looking at a completely different reaction!

                      So I think you need to consider the differences in the sport.


                      • No flames from me, anthem, I tried to make the same point earlier in the thread. I personally suspect that the temperament of the horse and the risk of the discipline you choose to participate in, as well as whether you do most of your riding in an arena with soft footing or in the open, are the main factors that affect your chances of death/serious injury - not helmet use. It's a very complex thing because I'd also hazard a guess that more people get seriously injured on stall kept horses than horses who live out 24/7. There are a lot of of factors that affect your likelihood of injury when riding and handling horses.


                        • No matter what discipline, a horse can spook, trip, or fall out dead with you on him. A helmet might save your life. "Might" is enough for me.
                          Little Star Chihuahua Rescue
                          The Barkalicious Bakery
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                          • I agree. I'm all for doing whatever I can to stack the odds in my favor. I can't justify not taking as many safety precautions as I can. I know they offer no guarantees, but it's better than nothing.


                            • My hubby started wearing a Helmet shortly after he saw me take a fall on pavement. I am a pretty dang good sticker-on'er but s**t happens. When my helmet encased head hit the the payment it was so loud that people half a block away came out to see what the h**l it was. I hit head first and lay lay there frozen like road kill arms and legs still in riding position so I'm told.

                              We wear helmets to gymkhanas etc and used to stand out and probably ridiculed silently till we kicked butt in many events. We don't go often but did as kids. Back then helmets in my part of the country were just unheard of. It's just dumb luck both of us were''t damaged early on. I call helmet-less riders "organ donors". One way or the other someday they"ll learn.


                              • Nice necro dude. This is a FIVE YEAR OLD thread lol.
                                Michael: Seems the people who burned me want me for a job.
                                Sam: A job? Does it pay?
                                Michael: Nah, it's more of a "we'll kill you if you don't do it" type of thing.
                                Sam: Oh. I've never liked those.


                                • Not everyone, especially new posters, realizes the suggested "similar threads" are ancient news.


                                  • Interesting/useful study here:


                                    "Horse-riding carries a high participant morbidity and mortality. Whereas a motor-cyclist can expect a serious accident at a rate of 1 per 7000h, the horse-rider can expect a serious accident once in every 350h, i.e. 20 times as dangerous as motor-cycling."

                                    Does anyone have the comparable statistics for automobile driving? I imagine it is much safer than motor-cycling in terms of accident rate. (The reason automobile accidents are more common is that many more people drive than ride.)

                                    There is also:


                                    "Head injury is the injury most likely to result in hospitalization or death. The effectiveness of helmets in preventing serious head injury in horse-related accidents has been very well established. Recommendations for the prevention of horse-related injury include requiring helmet use on and near a horse, use of safety stirrups to prevent drag injury, matching rider skill with the appropriate horse, and providing close adult supervision."



                                    "Prevention programmes should target horseback riders and horse caregivers to promote helmet use and educate participants about horse behaviour, proper handling of horses, and safe riding practices."



                                    "When compared to motorcycle riding, equestrian activity has a higher hospital admission rate of 0.14/1000 hours versus 0.49/1000 hours [2,3]. Consequently, horseback riding is considered more dangerous than motorcycle riding, skiing, automobile racing, football and rugby [3-6]. The riding position itself creates this high-risk situation. Horseback riding elevates the rider's head 3 meters above the ground on an animal that can easily weigh 500 kg or more, kick with a force of nearly 1 ton, and run at speeds of 65–75 km/h. In addition, horses are less predictable than either a motorcycle or a racecar."
                                    Last edited by fburton; Nov. 2, 2012, 02:37 PM. Reason: Added another ref.


                                    • Well, someone else remarked on another of these revived threads that we are going to be seeing a lot of this. So I guess it's starting.
                                      Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
                                      Incredible Invisible


                                      • If this has anything to do with the switch to the new format... It's very weird to me that old threads like this are being resurrected, when I tried last night to search for one of my own threads that is quite recent, and the search engine couldn't find it. I do hope all these glitches get worked out.

                                        (and related to the OP, I am an "every ride, every time" helmet-wearer.)
                                        You have to have experiences to gain experience.

                                        1998 Morgan mare Mythic Feronia "More Valley Girl Than Girl Scout!"


                                        • Originally posted by county View Post
                                          Very sad story, myself I never wear a helmet not even once. Some people do some don't same as when they drive a car. Actually very very few do when driving that I know of. Statistics say almost all head injuries in driving accidents could be prevented if the person had worn a helmet.
                                          *shrug* We can't force you. I used to only wear one when jumping or riding in an area new to my horse, e.g., Golden Gate Park or on the beach. Then I realized that it didn't matter how well I rode, or how reliable MY horse was, I can't control other riders or outside influences. My horse (then) wasn't at all spooky, but that's not going to help with an out of control bicyclist or any number of "I can't believe that happened...." circumstances.

                                          Now, my old event horse trainer was schooling a horse one day. She realized she was running later for another appointment. When she finished with the horse, the owner said they would take care of cool out and grooming, so trainer jumped in her car and drove off, not bothering to remove her helmet. About a mile down the road, another car ran a stop sign and plowed into her. Even though she had a seat belt, she did get thrown into the windshield (this is before airbags). They said afterwards she could have been seriously hurt, but since she was wearing her helmet, she wasn't even concussed.