Failing friendship over helmet wearing

This sub-forum all discussions about this "lively" subject. All topics that are substantially about helmets will be moved here, if not placed here correctly in the first place.
Tonyf33
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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby Tonyf33 » 8 Mar 2016, 5:10pm

pjclinch wrote:
Tonyf33 wrote:After seeing master Thomas's glancing blow with a telegraph pole (or somesuch) at last years TdF pretty much all the pelaton & Bikeradar/other race orientated forum users will have you believe he would have died a thousand deaths without it.
As opposed to him likely not hitting the pole with his head at all because he couldn't shy it away enough to avoid the glancing blow due to the extra diameter of his noggin (much of the blow was on his upper torso thst I could see) and that by time he hit the pole he was doing much less than 15mph anyways.


Or there is a possibility somewhere in between which does actually fit the case the damn things are designed for
, something like G took a bit of a whack, but rather than lose 5 minutes due to waiting for the stars to stop circling his head he lost less than 1 from being able to get back on quicker.

There's a lot of ground between Saving Your Life and Causing Avoidable Accidents

Pro riders are pretty hardy and will get back on with hideous road rash, but if you're dazed you really do have to wait a bit for the adrenaline to see you through. So a helmet, like a hairnet before it, can help with just getting back on and getting back in. This is not a factor where serious injury is on the cards, of course, and not something that obviously requires everyone to wear one.

Pete.

I think I made it pretty clear that's what I said, I stated that the rider was doing sub 15mph and the helmet took a glancing blow and that it wasn't a case of he going to die without the helmet (unlike the many race orientated forums).
IMO I don't think his head would have hit the pole if it weren't for the helmet but that's open for debate, the relatively minor low speed glancing blow still severely damaged his helmet which shows how fragile they really are.
mjr wrote: Except that, as Tonyf33 points out, the impact seemed to be to his shoulder/torso rather than his helmet. I can't play the video (itv uses the rubbish brightcove video player) but the still on http://www.itv.com/tourdefrance/video-g ... graph-pole shows an undamaged hat.

The helmet was actually quite badly damaged from what I recall seeing of it after the race finished, it was more toward the side/rear, still reckon he would have missed the pole without one anyway.

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mjr
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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby mjr » 8 Mar 2016, 5:59pm

Tonyf33 wrote:The helmet was actually quite badly damaged from what I recall seeing of it after the race finished, it was more toward the side/rear, still reckon he would have missed the pole without one anyway.

There don't seem to be stills or footage of that helmet, which seems surprising if it "worked".
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TonyR
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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby TonyR » 8 Mar 2016, 6:42pm

mjr wrote:
Tonyf33 wrote:The helmet was actually quite badly damaged from what I recall seeing of it after the race finished, it was more toward the side/rear, still reckon he would have missed the pole without one anyway.

There don't seem to be stills or footage of that helmet, which seems surprising if it "worked".


If it had had any significant hit it would have done the usual splitting in two and rather than waiting around for the stars to clear he would have been waiting around for someone to find him a new helmet.

drossall
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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby drossall » 8 Mar 2016, 10:30pm

mjr wrote:
Zigster wrote:I'm a Cub Scout leader. I've never done the Cyclist Activity Badge with my Cubs because the badge requirements insist that everyone has to wear a helmet, [...] It's easier just to let someone else do Bikeability with them.

Isn't this part of the problem? It's easier for most of us to just walk away rather than challenge this irrational "road safety" culture that's harming cycling and public health, which hands control of cycling education to the paranoia-pushers. I can appreciate why people do it and I won't blame anyone who decides not to fight these attacks on our cycling, but I ask everyone to at least consider objecting to those sorts of requirement formally.

I'm a Scout leader. I did write to the Scout Association when mandatory helmets were first proposed. At that point, I think the only research available was the early study in the Journal of Product Liability that suggested that an increase in the casualty rate was associated with helmet wearing. I'm not even sure that Thompson and Rivara was out then, let alone discredited.

However, there are bigger fish to fry. I'm not going to refuse to take Scouts out and give them a taste of real cycling, just over a safety measure that probably doesn't work but doesn't do that much harm either, and regardless has less effect than the health (and enjoyment) benefits of cycling. I'm due to lead the mountain biking in an expedition to Scotland this year. Mind you, it did take my LBS ten years to find a helmet that fitted me. I've never found another, so it's far too precious actually to wear for anything but Scout cycling, and I never bother when it's just me cycling out to camp.

Zigster
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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby Zigster » 10 Mar 2016, 6:32pm

It's not so much the insistence on having to wear a helmet that puts me off doing the badge but more that it's going to lead to the Cubs challenging me (as the ones that know me outside of Cubs know I don't wear a helmet for pottering around the village). And then the parents getting cross (like the OP's friend in this thread) when I explain why I don't always wear a helmet.

Having said that, my assistant leader said earlier this week that she wants to do the badge next term so I might have to cross that bridge after all.

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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby Mattyfez » 10 Mar 2016, 7:25pm

Good luck crossing that bridge! I suppose you could come from the angle that a helmet may prevent a nasty bruise at low speed, but if a car hits you at 30mph it won't help you a jot, and could possibly complicate your injury.

But there will be confrontation as per me writing this post, add a protective uniformed mother into the equation.. Yeh. Good luck!

I've just listened to a Jeremy vine show on radio 2 about helmets that aired today, and one lady contributor cited an experience whereby she fell off on an icey road and a car was coming towards her as she was laying on the road, and her first thoughts were 'I wish I was wearing a helmet'... She always wears one now.. I'm not sure how she thinks it will help her if she's spread eagled on the floor and is literally run over by a 1000kg vehicle at 30mph.. Magical powers, these helmets must have!

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pjclinch
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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby pjclinch » 10 Mar 2016, 8:10pm

Zigster wrote:It's not so much the insistence on having to wear a helmet that puts me off doing the badge but more that it's going to lead to the Cubs challenging me (as the ones that know me outside of Cubs know I don't wear a helmet for pottering around the village).


It's par for the course when I teach Bikeability (sans lid) that some of the kids will ask me why I don't wear a helmet, which is actually a part of why I prefer to teach without one even when my charges are forced to by policy.

And I tell them that I am in considerably less danger of a head injury riding my bike than they are playing tig and football in their lunch break, and have they ever banged their head doing that? And it turns out a lot of them have (the school office even has a sheet of "I banged my head!" stickers to help cheer them up), and so I ask them do they wear helmets for that? And then you can see the thinking gears staring to move around...

Zigster wrote:And then the parents getting cross (like the OP's friend in this thread) when I explain why I don't always wear a helmet.


Give them a copy of Tim Gill's "Cycling and children and young people" and point out his evidence based argument that there's far from any certainty, including for children, trumps their gut instinct as far as your own personal use is concerned..

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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby Vorpal » 10 Mar 2016, 8:45pm

Zigster wrote:It's not so much the insistence on having to wear a helmet that puts me off doing the badge but more that it's going to lead to the Cubs challenging me (as the ones that know me outside of Cubs know I don't wear a helmet for pottering around the village). And then the parents getting cross (like the OP's friend in this thread) when I explain why I don't always wear a helmet.

Having said that, my assistant leader said earlier this week that she wants to do the badge next term so I might have to cross that bridge after all.

Just give them a five minutes chat about the advantages & disadvantages of helmets, and let them know why you don't always wear them, why they have to, and where more information is available. That's what I did when I ran Bikeability classes for a county council that required plastic hats.
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drossall
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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby drossall » 10 Mar 2016, 10:18pm

I've never been asked. That's just as well. I'm not prepared to go as far as wearing one to ride to Scout events by myself, but equally I wouldn't want to get into the debate in my role as a Scout Leader, because it would mean telling parents that Scout safety rules were inappropriate. I'm not sure it works like that; I've signed up to follow the rules.

Running this activity fortnight in Scotland, I'll be making sure helmets are worn properly (and quietly not mentioning that mine has not been replaced in a decade - it can't be, because it's the only one I've ever found that I could cram onto my 66cm head).

Of course, I'm happy to explain to other Leaders why I do what I do, and I've already said that I wrote to HQ about it.

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pjclinch
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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby pjclinch » 11 Mar 2016, 9:43am

drossall wrote:Running this activity fortnight in Scotland, I'll be making sure helmets are worn properly (and quietly not mentioning that mine has not been replaced in a decade - it can't be, because it's the only one I've ever found that I could cram onto my 66cm head).


A pal of mine who's worked in mountain guiding would sometimes be asked by clients why he was in trainers when their gear lists required boots. And he'd point out he couldn't get size 14+ boots. There are times when an alternative relevant-sounding truth is easier than going in to the full background.

The current version of the Sustrans helmet policy is a help:

We support the individual’s freedom of choice whether to wear a cycle helmet or not, and for parents to make that choice for their children.

Helmet wearing isn't a legal requirement in the UK, and the evidence is inconclusive as to whether it makes cycling safer.


And I can point out, entirely truthfully, that my mum is quite happy for me to ride without a helmet!

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AlaninWales
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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby AlaninWales » 11 Mar 2016, 9:55am

drossall wrote:I've never been asked. That's just as well. I'm not prepared to go as far as wearing one to ride to Scout events by myself, but equally I wouldn't want to get into the debate in my role as a Scout Leader, because it would mean telling parents that Scout safety rules were inappropriate. I'm not sure it works like that; I've signed up to follow the rules.

You've signed up to "follow the rules" and not to help the young scout members to become useful members of society who are capable of thinking independently and assessing evidence? Baden-Powell must be spinning in his grave.

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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby pjclinch » 11 Mar 2016, 10:37am

AlaninWales wrote:You've signed up to "follow the rules" and not to help the young scout members to become useful members of society who are capable of thinking independently and assessing evidence? Baden-Powell must be spinning in his grave.


While the creation of the Scout Movement was a Good Thing for independence of children B-P did come up with some stern, hectoring, no-space-for-reasonable-doubt stuff that doesn't look to sit too well with thoughtful scepticism, so I'd be wary about attributing opinions to someone with such forthright opinions... Maybe he is spinning in his grave, but there again maybe he's saying "Quite right too, obviously what a sensible fellow should do!"

If you want to teach Scouts (or school Bikeability groups, or whoever) the realities of cycling all you'll usually get if you don't play their game by their rules is thrown out of the game. So you'll end up not teaching them anything because you won't be let near them. They'll have less fun, nobody is actually ahead :(

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Phil Fouracre
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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby Phil Fouracre » 11 Mar 2016, 1:48pm

Sounds very like my 'run in' with British Cycling. Went on a ride leader course, as I was keen to be able to help locals get into cycling. Was told originally that I would have to wear a helmet for the course because of 'the landowners insurance' mmm!
Anyway all qualified, went on first ride, to be told I should still wear a helmet, 'to set a good example', had a discussion! pointless, as they weren't prepared to listen. Having emphasised the fact that it is not a legal requirement, I decided that we should part company. I still get emails asking me to lead rides, but, sad to say I'm now not interested.
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Si
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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby Si » 11 Mar 2016, 3:51pm

BC have gone mad on elf'n'safety since a couple of people got killed in their events. We recently had a spat with them as they wouldn't accept experienced, fully accredited bikeability instructors unless they had done their bikeability 4 day course with BC. Thankfully they saw sense in the end (when it looked like we would take the sack of money away).
Now I'm stuck in the position that I have several bikeability instructors under my aegis, who are less experienced than me, and who I have mentored in the past, but I'm not allowed to help them run the sessions that I'm putting on because I've not done the half day induction thingy and thus there are insurance issues. Mental.

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Si
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Re: Failing friendship over helmet wearing

Postby Si » 11 Mar 2016, 3:52pm

oo, sorry, didn't want to put the thread at risk of going off topic and getting dragged out of the lid bin. :wink: