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Ski helmets and slow speeds: new study highlights protection value - Page 2

post #31 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scavenger View Post
Where is the freedom of choce here? Why should ski helmet be made mandatory?
In Europe, the treeline is at about 1800m to 2000m, so preople are normally skiing above the treeline. Skiers do not have to worry about banging their head against the tree unless they are skiing down to the village.

In fact, if you go skiing in the alps, you will find less than 1% of the skiers there wear ski helmet.
No argument about freedom: do what you want but I disagree about trees. Like I said earlier in my post, I have had two serious concussions while skiing/ snowboarding. Trees were not involved either time so the argument that treeline is high, doesn't really matter. One time I jumped a somewhat large cornice without probing the landing fully. There was a submerged rockshelf which stopped my board and then my head hit the rock. Cracked helmet, broken goggles, head intact but concussion due to the hit (brain hitting the skull). I am sure you have similar terrain in Europe.

Second time, at high speed on race snowboard (hard boot non release bindings), on icy groomed slope, caught wind on a roller and tumbled several times. Landed/ glanced on head/neck before tumbling several times. Same scenario on why the concussion. Again, you can have that in Europe.

As to why no concussions yet on skis, it is possible that riding position has something to do with it. Most likely though, I spent all my twenties on a board (likely taking more chances) and now that I am skiing in my thirties maybe I take less chances subconsciously (definitely not consciously).

So my input is to wear a good helmet whether you ride or ski and irrespective of the terrain/ trees.
post #32 of 45
Hey, take it easy.
Whether you are going to wear ski helmet is your personal choice, I am just telling you mine - strictly personal opinion. Do what you want and wear what you want.

For me, trees have never been a problem because there isn't any above 2000m in the Alps. And (fingers crossed) I have not have a serious skiing accident for the last 30 years.
post #33 of 45
Does anyone know of a breakdown of skiing head injuries into cause (penetration, concussion from impact with flat surface, collision with another skier, etc.)? My hunch is that there are a lot of mild to moderate concussions from simply going down hard and tumbling, head slapping around as you go. Not as sexy as getting impaled on a tree, so won't make the news, let alone make you go to the ER, but that stuff adds up. Just ask old NFL players. Who tend to have thicker necks than 99% of us.
post #34 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by ct55 View Post
Actually there are many cases where it is already mandatory at least for children. I'm thinking of bikes but I want to say snow sports it might be as well.
One case I can think of is Italy - all children under 14 must wear helmets for snowsports. A couple of references from Italian websites:
http://www.sanmartino.com/w/en/servi...ildren.fun.php
http://www.dolomitisuperski.com/121.athx?ccode=en-US
post #35 of 45
In the past few years
- I have slipped and fallen backwards on ice (twice)
- Been hit on the noggin by ice falling off the chair
- Hit a tree branch or two (maybe three)
- gone staight over after having a ski go under a thick ice-crust
- went into a crevice and gone straight over

In all instances I've had helmet on, and am eternally grateful that I did.
post #36 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by ct55 View Post
Actually there are many cases where it is already mandatory at least for children. I'm thinking of bikes but I want to say snow sports it might be as well.

Not to get into the whole libertarian live and let live thing. Kids don't have as many rights to be left alone anyway because they presumably don't know any better.
Kids NEVER really have much "rights to be left alone anyway" because pareants remove most of them anyway.

But it's not about the right of the kids really, is it? It's really about the right of parenting choices, stupid!

Nowadays, society is removing the parents from choosing what to enforce on their kids. Because "they (parents) presumably don't know any better", I suppose?
post #37 of 45
Hmm, the speed in the terrain park is lame.

87.6% of time. Considering a nice park run. Stand till line clears - slowly take up speed, hit 1-2 rails, go over a small jump, now start gathering speed for the final big jump (all the time you've been below 15 Miles/H), however to hit the biggest jump in the park, say around 25m table, below 30-40 miles/h depending on the jump will be a no go.

Allright, 87.6% of the time you've been slower, around 50% of the distance of your run you've been slower, however pretty much every single run you've gone faster. That Number simply doesn't tell anything, because a helmet should not only cover 87.6% of time, but safe your head 100% of time.
post #38 of 45
Not to dispose of the whole Libertarian argument here, but….as a “old-timer” coming back to skiing after 25 years (where there were NO helmets to be seen anywhere on the slopes), are they really warmer than wearing a hat? If so, that might sway me to put one on right there!
post #39 of 45
I initially bought a helmet because I was accompanying my young (at the time) daughter to her first summer race camp and the adult camp literature said I had to have one. Naturally, I discovered this info in late June and had to pay full retail for someone to go to their warehouse and find it behind the winter stuff. Also naturally, I got to the camp and was told that the literature only applied to the kids, not me. By that time, tho, I'd paid so much money for the thing I started wearing it the next winter. It was a full helmet and much warmer than the hat I'd been devoted to for years. That hat was kind of like a jacket for your head, not a knit thing. I always said I wore the helmet when it was cold because of the cold but that I would be tempted to take it off some nice spring day.

NO MORE.

My accident occurred on a green trail. I had just stopped to scope out a small section of bumps that better skiers went through to kind of cut out a slow switchback in the trail. It was a fine spring afternoon, but the snow had just started to get grabby. Anyway, the next thing I knew I was being put on a back board. Two broken wrists (must have put my arms up to protect myself) and a coup-contrecoup injury to my head. Helmet has like a seam on the front with crazing in the finish where I hit something, possibly the tree with the string around it I see in my mind. (I'll have to go check for this tree sometime.) I could have been dead or (in my opinion) worse, a vegetable, for the rest of my life. THANK YOU BRIKO! I had sunglasses under goggles on as well. Sunglasses were smashed, goggles show gashes. Face was apparently a study in burgundy and navy for a while, no one would let me see.

Anyway, WEAR A HELMET NO MATTER WHAT TRAIL YOU ARE ON. I wasn't going fast, I think I just lost my balance, possibly due to grabby snow, at a critical point where the trail turned and couldn't recover in time. I don't remember anything, really, only that I had stopped about 15 feet above where it happened, so I couldn't have been going very fast.

Oh, yeah, that was my 73rd day out and I got in 1.8 million vertical feet last winter, so it wasn't like I was out of shape or something.
post #40 of 45
The helmet argument does bang on and on, doesn't it?

Having worn motor-cycling and caving helmets, I have noted the flimsy construction of my Scott skiing helmet, and am not convinced that it is much use. Moreover, I bought it when conditions were bright and sunny - and forgot the obvious thing of trying goggles with it. Result is that any goggles I wear with it are pushed down on my nose and cheeks. I think this is distracting, and so affects primary safety. I therefore do not wear it - and have not been motivated to buy one that will fit me with goggles.

Another thought:

At the moment passengers flying from the UK are limited to one item of hand baggage, which must fit within a specific space envelope. So that makes packing a helmet difficult when going out to the Alps. I have found that packing it in my main ski bag, though possible, is very tricky. Even though one can stuff soft objects into it, the large hard object is hard to pack around. And, of course, the helmet itself has to be cushioned if it is not to get damaged. Less of a problem if travelling by train, and not one if going by car.
post #41 of 45
Ski helmets are designed to protect you from falls, not high speed impacts. just like bicycle helmets are designed to protect you if you fall off the bike, not if you get hit by a truck. They are good if you slip on a rail and bang your head on it. Nothing will help you in a high speed collision with a tree. At even 30 mph hitting a fixed object like a tree would be the equivalent of falling from a 4th floor window onto pavement. I would bet most people are far more likely to fall down and hit their head on the snow than hit a tree head on at speed though. I read somewhere that a fall directly onto your head from head height is just barely within the limits of survivability for an average height person. I remember in the army in airborne school, anyone who couldn't learn not to hit their head on landings was kicked out, because even with helmets that was the cause of most of the serious injuries and deaths that occurred. So if just falling on your head from a standing position can be that dangerous, a helmet is probably a pretty good idea. they also protect against cuts and lumps from minor bangs, hitting your head on anything is pretty painful. i might even buy one if i can find a good deal.
post #42 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post
not this again......
Funny, I was thinking the same thing. Oh well, fight fire with fire....

http://forums.epicski.com/showthread.php?t=55337&

I'm no scientist, (oh wait, I am), and look what I gleaned from that study...

Quote:
A total of 113 observations were recorded. Forty-eight observations were made of 9 skiers and snowboarders in gladed terrain, and 65 observations were conducted of 21 skiers and snowboarders in the terrain park. In 79% of the cases in gladed terrain and 94% of the instances in the terrain park, observed speeds were less than 15 mph.
I'm sorry, but a N of 9 is WAY TOO SMALL for a population size esp when we are talking about skiing. I'd say most of the observations = INVALID. Give folks a GPS and let them ski for a day, and download the data when they are done....

And furthermore....

Quote:
During the first series of measurements, 9 male expert-level members of the resort’s ski patrol were observed in a designated gladed trail within the resort. The trail was rated as a single black diamond trail (advanced level) by the resort. The cohort consisted of 2 snowboarders, 2 telemark skiers, and 5 alpine skiers. The skiers and snowboarders were observed at 3 discrete areas within the glade and instructed to ride aggressively.
Telemark skiers? Ski Patrol? Northeastern Ski Area? Give me a break. They should have asked highwaystar to help if they were looking for gapers.....

EDIT: When I let my wife, the statistician, read the study she said "They published this?"
post #43 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by epl View Post
Ski helmets are designed to protect you from falls, not high speed impacts. just like bicycle helmets are designed to protect you if you fall off the bike, not if you get hit by a truck. They are good if you slip on a rail and bang your head on it. Nothing will help you in a high speed collision with a tree. At even 30 mph hitting a fixed object like a tree would be the equivalent of falling from a 4th floor window onto pavement. I would bet most people are far more likely to fall down and hit their head on the snow than hit a tree head on at speed though. I read somewhere that a fall directly onto your head from head height is just barely within the limits of survivability for an average height person. I remember in the army in airborne school, anyone who couldn't learn not to hit their head on landings was kicked out, because even with helmets that was the cause of most of the serious injuries and deaths that occurred. So if just falling on your head from a standing position can be that dangerous, a helmet is probably a pretty good idea. they also protect against cuts and lumps from minor bangs, hitting your head on anything is pretty painful. i might even buy one if i can find a good deal.
Well said. I remember reading about one person In Kingston a few years ago who fell unconscious from a punch to the jaw and hit his head on a concrete floor. The fall killed him.
post #44 of 45
Case in point (warning: anecdote ) I was at Jackson Hole during Gaper Fool's Day weekend this year. Very warm, slushy conditions. Not paying attention much, I was cruising down Teewinot Gully I think, maybe 10mph, without putting a lot of effort into it. I must have caught a pile of slush because next thing I knew I was facing up the trail and falling down backwards. Slammed the back of my head on the snow. It dazed me for a few seconds, but except for a sore neck the rest of the trip I was fine. I can only speculate how I would have fared without a helmet, but I'm darn sure I had one on!
post #45 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elistan View Post
Case in point (warning: anecdote ) I was at Jackson Hole during Gaper Fool's Day weekend this year. Very warm, slushy conditions. Not paying attention much, I was cruising down Teewinot Gully I think, maybe 10mph, without putting a lot of effort into it. I must have caught a pile of slush because next thing I knew I was facing up the trail and falling down backwards. Slammed the back of my head on the snow. It dazed me for a few seconds, but except for a sore neck the rest of the trip I was fine. I can only speculate how I would have fared without a helmet, but I'm darn sure I had one on!
Yes ... I have told this story before, but I gave myself a mild concussion falling the same way in 11 inches of soft, light Colorado powder ... I was looking behind me (not a good idea in a foot of snow) at my daughter, sunk my tips in, spun, hit the back of my (un-helmeted) head, and felt drunk for the next day or so. I bought a helmet soon after ...
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