Sunday, January 3, 2010

Helmets are (almost) cool now

I read this article the other day: Helmets Becoming More Common on the Ski Slopes.

I had no idea helmets and safety were becoming more commonplace in skiing, too. When I was a kid, we rode our bikes, our horses, and yes, even skied bareheaded. These days you rarely see a kid on a bike without a helmet, even scooting around their own driveways. And apparently, although safety concerns aren't quite as far along among skiers (nearly half wear helmets, according to the article), helmets are definitely gaining in popularity.

When I read the article, I immediately thought of horseback riding. I've posted a few times about helmets — I've gone from being practically allergic to head protection, to wearing one most of the time. Periodically I forget when I go out for a lazy bareback ride, but I'm getting better — and my trainer (who is wearing one more often herself these days) is helping to remind me.

Helmet-wearing still isn't that popular, particularly among the middle-aged women who seem to make up the majority of boarders at my barn. Most of them ride bareheaded. I guess it's a hard habit to break, especially when you've grown up a certain way. Which is why I'm trying to change my ways now — someday I want it to be as natural for me as putting on a seat belt in the car (which I typically do even to fix a parking job, just by habit).



At January 4, 2010 at 4:52 AM, Blogger RiverBend Farm said...

As an almost 60 yr old woman, I do not use a helmet but, as a nurse, I can tell you it is definitely the wiser option to make. Shame on me!
Just an FYI, check coverage on your health insurance to see if Traumatic Brain Injury is covered. Texas Laws mandate coverage unless your policy states noncoverage. It is an extremely high dollar injury to be left without coverage.
Makes me think I need to go get a helmet!

At January 4, 2010 at 4:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wearing mine has become automatic - although I have plenty of pictures from when I was young (many years ago) where I'm not wearing one, including when jumping.

I think you're right - it's a matter of establishing a habit. My younger daughter hangs hers on her bridle hook, which I think is a good idea - grab bridle, grab helmet!

At January 4, 2010 at 1:42 PM, Blogger Sydney said...

I would say I 80% of the time use a helmet. When I drive and show I don't and when I do weddings I don't and sometimes riding bridleless. Most of the time I am riding bridleless my horse is in the paddock and I just jump up and we cruise around.
I wrote a blog post (that ended up published in a magazine last year) about helmets and helmet safety. Theres really no logical reason not to wear one.

At January 5, 2010 at 5:14 PM, Blogger Katharine Swan said...

Thanks for your input, everyone!

RiverBend Farm, good point about traumatic brain injury -- definitely a good reason to wear a helmet, if it's not covered!

Kate, I'm not sure my bridle hook will hold a helmet and my bridle at the same time, but that is a good idea!

Sydney, I'll check out your post, thanks! But if there is no real logical reason not to wear one, why don't you? Haha, sorry -- couldn't resist -- I have to confess, I find it harder to remember to wear one when I'm riding bareback, so I understand where you're coming from.


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