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Actual research on skiers/boarders and helmets: - Page 2

post #31 of 53
My biggest issue with wearing a helmet (which I do), is also what to do with it when I want to take it off. It takes up too much space on the cafeteria table! I also have an issue with the fact that the goggle mfgrs don't make straps long enough to fit over my Giro Fuse. I have to wear the goggle strap under the helmet for them to fit correctly and not pull too tight (and hurt the bridge of my nose).

I have fallen on ice while walking, and whacked my helmeted head, and was very thankful for it. I have also been hit by another skier, and in the pileup, my head hit his binding fairly hard. I only know it happened because of the noise I heard, and the scuff mark on the helmet.

Both would have been very painful without my helmet. I've also had my bell rung a number of times by "safety" bars.

About the article below, they make the statement:
"Seventy children were evaluated at the clinic following ski/snowboard related head, neck, and face injuries. Fourteen did not require investigation or treatment. Of the remaining..." I really want to know what % of those 14 were wearing helmets. Isn't that the real issue? Why did they ignore the hypothesis that wearing a helmet simply reduces the number of injuries that need treatment? If it keeps me on the hill, rather than spending time in a clinic or hospital, then it's worth it!
post #32 of 53
Adding to the overall safety factor, many helmets (including mine) now come with integrated headphones! I now make sure to download (legally of course) all the ski movie soundtracks I can find before hitting the slopes each season!
post #33 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by iskitoofast4u
Adding to the overall safety factor, many helmets (including mine) now come with integrated headphones!
Plus I can get my cell phone to kind of stay in place sticking it between my helmet and my ear.

I like to call up talk radio while skiing, the long wait on hold to be on the air is good while doing bump runs. Sometime I'll be on the air while skiing really fast on a green run and fly by beginners while I'm complaining about the team not bunting when it should have or what not.

(just kidding ya know.)
post #34 of 53
The people who are convinced that they've been saved numerous times from injuries by their helmets:

- You threw the helmet away and got a new one after each incident, right?
post #35 of 53
What happens when you get hit in the face? Shouldn't you also wear a face shield like the SWAT cops do?

.....Ott
post #36 of 53
I once wanted to do a double backflip down a 15m cliff. But I lost orientation in the air and landed directly on my head. Even if nothing would have happened due to the deep pow, when you wear a helmet you do not need to protect your head with your arms. Therefore the overall chance to break (etc.) something else lowers too. If you become riskier with a helmet, well that's life.

Do you think Ski racers wear helmets to help the helmet industry? NOPE they wear them for safety. The more speed you have, the better to have on one
post #37 of 53
Now come on:

Are you going to take safety advice from someone who does double backflips off of 50-foot cliffs?
post #38 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by sjjohnston
Now come on:

Are you going to take safety advice from someone who does double backflips off of 50-foot cliffs?
Well who better to dole out safety advice than those who've learned from their mistakes and/or need said safety equipment the most?! It's like a smoker I saw wearing one of Lance Armstrong's LiveSTRONG bracelets said to me: "Who needs cancer research more than smokers?!"

Understand I don't agree with the moronic statement above! Actually, I don't know that the Lance Armstrong foundation even donates to lung cancer aside from possibly giving $$ to support the families of those lost to the disease.
post #39 of 53
A slightly bigger discussion of helmets, which I offer hesitantly:

A lot of the "if you have a brain, you must wear a helmet" thinking comes from a sort of knee-jerk reaction that putting something inside a case makes it safe.

Think about how heads get injured. Essentially, there are:
1 - Minor bangs (e.g. hitting your head on the hood over a stove, which I am fond of doing), which hurt and sometimes raise a lump, but don't do any lasting damage.
2 - Scalp lacerations, which hurt (not that much, actually) and bleed like crazy but don't really do any lasting damage.
3 - Basic concussions, sans skull fracture, which are bad.
4 - Penetrating traumas and skull fractures, in which something sharp or bluntish actually goes through the skull. Really bad.

Focus on 3 for a moment. What causes a concussion (I think) is when the head decelerates suddenly (because it hits something), and the brain smooshes (technical term) against the inside of the skull.

The only way a helmet helps in this situation is that it has a fairly thin layer of firm foam that can be crushed, allowing the head to decelerate over a slightly longer distance and time. Put another way, it dissipates some of the energy of the collision by using it to crush the foam lining.

In the typical helmet (there may be some different ones), the foam is not resilient, so: if you use the helmet to avoid a concussion, you destroy the helmet. Also, because you can't sell a helmet with a diameter of 24 inches, the foam layer must be thin, which means it must be quite hard (if it were soft, it wouldn't dissipate significant energy before your head crushed it entirely and ran into the outer shell). You don't crush the foam at all unless you hit something quite hard.

All the helmet does -- at least when you're talking about concussions -- is reduce the severity, and not by all that much, given how thin the foam is. Also: (i) if you haven't crushed the foam, wrecking your helmet, your helmet hasn't helped you avoid a standard-issue concussion and (ii) (based on loose, possibly not entirely reliable, observations) if you haven't really got your bell rung (definitely to the point of seeing stars, and probably to the point of minor concussion) you haven't crushed the foam.

As to 4, helmets may help avoid penetrating traumas, in that whatever's penetrating needs to get through an inch or so of foam before it gets to your skull. Not a ton of protection. If you want significant protection, you should wear a helmet with an honest-to-god hard shell, like a motorcycle helmet, which is what racers wore many years ago. Of course, then the helmets wouldn't be light, cool and comfortable, so people wouldn't wear them at all.

A sort of corollary note on 3 and 4: your brain is already inside a case, called your skull, which is considerably harder than any helmet I've seen.

As to 1: okay, sure, the helmet helps. Definitely better than a hat as to bumps -- i.e. whacks that injure your scalp and skull, but do no damage to your brain. Of course, slalom shin guards will do the same thing for your shin bones, and those haven't caught on. Also, in my experience, I hit my head a lot more times (and, I think, more often) while doing things other than skiing.

Re 2: Scalp lacerations don't seem to be that common, at least since people stopped wearing safety straps. They're probably less common while skiing than during various other activities in which people seldom wear helmets. There's probably not a world of difference between the protection afforded by a wool knit hat and a helmet until you're getting into the penetrating-trauma-type of impacts.
post #40 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by sjjohnston
Now come on:

Are you going to take safety advice from someone who does double backflips off of 50-foot cliffs?
Well I might take a safety meeting with him
post #41 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by sjjohnston
Now come on:
Are you going to take safety advice from someone who does double backflips off of 50-foot cliffs?
Yes, especially when I was about to (start to do) the same.
Or should I consult a snowplowing beginner with his/her vast skiing experience instead?
Or maybe I donĀ“t need to ask for advice.
To see the racers could be enough.
Sure: are you going to take safety advice from someone who schusses a run with 90 mph?
Again: ....
post #42 of 53
Well, double bakckflip into deep pow is like jumping into a swimmingpool. If you know that the landing is safe you just go above the cliff and do whatever you want. It shouldn't hurt. I'm out of this by now, due to injuries (which occured at freestyle competitions, so generally safer thought things). My friends and I had some places we would take our skis off and jump in, trying to do really crazy moves. After the landing is worn out, just search another cliff. I was able to do a controlled backsideloop and single backflip though in the terrain park. Doubles is something for deep powder and high cliffs as you need the time. The chance to stand something like this in powder is for me like 1 to 5. But hey it's fun, and I feel that the helmet safes me a bit, as I am safe about my head, and can use my arms for other things than securing my head.
post #43 of 53
I have to say that for safety gears the more the better. Helmet or whatever. People just have to watch themself and watch others when they're out there.

Having an helmet doesn't mean you're invincible and can go do something risky. I have seen kids knock unconcious with helmet on doing stuff things.

I'm not so worry about my head since I don't ski on ice the thing that scares me the most is the neck around. u can really hurt it bad easily and it take months to recover and rehap plus afterward that area would never feel as good as before
post #44 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by iskitoofast4u
Adding to the overall safety factor, many helmets (including mine) now come with integrated headphones! I now make sure to download (legally of course) all the ski movie soundtracks I can find before hitting the slopes each season!
I personally love listening to sweet sounds my skis make as i am cranking along. Thats music to my ears.

Oh, and my hemet has saved my a$$ and the day countless times. I worship my helmet "ole Bess" at ma girl
post #45 of 53
I worked for 2 1/2 years with two individuals with traumatic brain injuries, one of them from a skiing accident. So this is an issue I've considered often. He hit his head on a lift pole, and he wasn't wearing a helmet. However, if he had been wearing one he may still have suffered a brain injury.

Tramatic brain injuries are caused when, due to inertia, the brain slams against the inside of the skull, which is not smooth as one might expect, but rather has protruberances which may bruise the brain in an impact. The impact of the brain into the skull is what causes the injury to the brain, so a helmet would not prevent this type of injury in cases of high velocity. However a helmet will prevent one's skull from being crushed.

The vast majority of truamatic brain injuries are a result of auto accidents, but I've never met a skier who wears a helmet and leaves it on for the drive home.

As I see it, it is a matter of what gives you the most comfort, physical, emotional and psychological. Some folks find their comfort in the protection against the elements and potential injury that helmets offer. Some take comfort in feeling free from encumberances, and from planning for the worst case scenario.

I personally don't wear a helmet, on the slopes or on my bike. I have, on a number of occasions had someone try to convince me that I should. There always seems to be a note of hostility in these attempts to persuade me. To me it seems like some people go through life trying to avoid feeling fear, and when others don't conform to their avoidance mechanisms, they become afraid, and try to avoid their fear by seeking to instill it in others. If the others won't take in the fear, the fearful seek to avoid feeling fear through expressing contempt for those who don't share their preference for insulation from potential danger.
post #46 of 53
I like my helmet. It's a nice psychological booster and it's warm.

Anyway, this argument is kinda baffling. I'm not even sure what is being argued, therefore I will state my opinion in no uncertain terms!

1. Even a perfect helmet won't stop the rest of your spine and torso from getting crushed when hitting a tree at 60mph. You'll still probably die. Common sense.

2. A helmet doesn't protect anyone else but yourself. Even seatbelts protect others if they keep a driver behind the wheel of his car.

3. A helmet is an inch of plastic and foam between your noggin and something that can break your noggin, making it desirable. Also common sense.

Therefore helmets as safety equipment should not be mandatory since their effect is entirely personal, but are a good idea. Helmets for minors should be mandatory if we accept mandatory safety belt and helmet laws for minors in other aspects of society.
post #47 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Jim Slade
Helmets for minors should be mandatory if we accept mandatory safety belt and helmet laws for minors in other aspects of society.
I don't have a problem with most of this stuff except for the above statement. Making helmets mandatory for minors means that someone like ski area management is reponsible for making sure minors wear a helmet. You got a liftie working for minimum wage and he lets a minor on the lift without a helmet, do we throw the liftie in jail or take his shoes away. I got a problem with making it mandatory for minors to wear a helmet because someone has to police this and someone other than the parent is going to be responsible. Lawyers would love this law though because it means more money for them. More money for lawyers means more money you pay for a lift ticket.
post #48 of 53
How about we make parents or legal guardians responsible for thier children or wards. Give them a ticket?
post #49 of 53
many ski areas make snowboard leg straps and ski brakes manditory. I've had lift guys stop us and check us for those. Same thing for helmets if you were so inclined to make them manditory for kids.
post #50 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by sjjohnston
The people who are convinced that they've been saved numerous times from injuries by their helmets:

- You threw the helmet away and got a new one after each incident, right?
If the inner shell is not broken - the helmet can be reused.

I wear a helmet because people crashed into me on several occasions, and snapped-off skis have hit the head before. Not a pleasant feeling, and the helmet provides good protection against minor head injuries caused by heavy/sharp objects.

The only drawback to wearing a helmet is the weight. However, I am sure they will become lighter in the near future.
post #51 of 53
My take on this issue is this:
I just started skiing this past year with no helemt, once a Snowboarder cut me off acully he ran over the front of my skis wich called me to fall hit my head, NP i just got a minor bump and a little pain. Later in the season I was doing my first Black Diamond ever when i hit some ice fell HARD the back of my head hit the hard pack BAD and i rolled 30 feet down the hill. I layed in the snow for a good 5 mins not because i was injured but because ny head was ringing and i was seeing stars. I was woozy for the rest of the night. If I had been wearing a helmet i still would have fell but i wouldn't have had the concussion scare. I'm 33, i don't want to put my self in jeopardy because of the who needs a helmet? i'm to tough for that attitude. I'm buying one before i hit slopes in 05\06. Because I know for a fact it will help me from hurting myself or being plowed into by snowboarders.
post #52 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Raingel
If the inner shell is not broken - the helmet can be reused.

I wear a helmet because people crashed into me on several occasions, and snapped-off skis have hit the head before. Not a pleasant feeling, and the helmet provides good protection against minor head injuries caused by heavy/sharp objects.

The only drawback to wearing a helmet is the weight. However, I am sure they will become lighter in the near future.
I wear a helmet because of Rusty's story about getting clocked on the beginner hill. (Yes, really!)

I wear a Marker M3 because I barely even feel it when it's on. I actually forget I'm wearing it at times.
post #53 of 53
Just a though from an old patroller...
Can a helmet save your life? .........Sometimes.
Shouldn't that be enough?
I have seen too many head traumas, and heard too many people say "that will never happen to me, I'm too good". Usually they are the same people. Work a few fatal head traumas and you will see how little it takes to die.
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