Who wears a skid lid on training rides?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by wayfastwhitey, Feb 1, 2005.

  1. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    I've never hurt my head in a bike crash or motorcycle crash either, but I've been lucky. Last season I saw three bike crashes up close, so I know how quickly they can happen to any of us on two wheels. When you help the dazed rider get their broken helmet off while waiting for the paramedics, the value becomes apparent.
     


  2. wayfastwhitey

    wayfastwhitey New Member

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    Hey guys, it's me the guy who started the thread, I am enjoying all of the input you guys have, and am definitely thinking more about what I do. Some of you guys are really making an impact with your crash stories, but what really hit the nail on the head for me is the comment "you never plan to have an accident" that makes sense. It's kind of like playing the lottery, playing won't guarantee that you win, but you will never win if you don't play. I think that not wearing a helmet doesn't mean that you WILL have a noodle altering crash that your helmet saves you from, but if you aren't wearing it, it never gets the chance to save you. I am definitely not so arrogant or stupid to think that I am too good to crash, but I admit that I do suffer from the it won't happen to me syndrome on account of many times I've cheated death a little. I am joining a local club, and I think you are strongly reccomended to wear a helmet on rides, and require for their weekly crit. So I will be wearing one for sure.

    I can't say that I will wear one all the time, because I also like the feel of not wearing one. Yes accidents can happen anytime, but if I wear it most of the time, that increases my statistical chances of being protected quite a bit. I don't have a religious belief in helmets like some of you do, but then I ride a motorcycle, I am a tree surgeon, I forget my seatbelt sometimes, so I am not perfect, and I won't fool myself into thinking I can control any of these things. So I will probably continue to enjoy some helmetless riding, and helmeted riding.Even you religous helmet guys could try it, a little wind in your hair a quick spin around the neighborhood, put on your vintage cycling cap and feel like an old school roadie, it's fun, and it's ok to break the rules a little
     
  3. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    You were sounding almost reasonable right up until you made this stupid suggestion. Really stupid. If you decide to wear or not wear a helmet, that's fine: it's your decision. But it's a bit adolescent to suggest that people wearing helmets are really missing out on something by not leaving their's at home, now and again.

    Old school, yeah, whatever.
     
  4. wayfastwhitey

    wayfastwhitey New Member

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    Oh yes, there's helmet zealot in every crowd, I'm sorry that you feel the need to insult everybody's intelligence on this board by assuming that they lack the ability to make their own decisions, and I am endangering the lives of the brainless drones that blindly follow my horrible ways after being hypnotized by a little nostalgia for the good old days, they went into their trance when I said cycling cap and snapped my fingers three times helmets off everyone, you are under the control of the adolescent a-hole leading you to your certain helmetless death by the tune of my pan flute, and a wave of my Molteni cap. Now you might experience something crazy, and out of control, it's not unlike leaving your house in the morning when anything may happen to you, It's just that a few self-righteous helmet zealots happen not to like my free spiritedness, and they have been blessed with the cycling forum to unlease their verbal disentary on the unsuspecting morons that have no free thought. Thanks for warning everybody how dangerous this is and how adolescent I am. Surely anybody who doesn't have the same opinion as you must therefore be adolescent. This makes sense. Now I am learning more about myself. Please tell me more.
     
  5. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    I'd hardly call me a helmet zealot, thank you.

    What is it again that you think someone will learn, if they leave their helmet at home? Do you think that they might be able to get a hint of the wild, edgy existence that you lead? I mean, you have a motorcycle....you throw caution to the wind.....you must be a real type A kinda guy....a real risk-taker, alive on the bleedin' edge of life. Suppose I could get your autograpH?
     
  6. graf zeppelin

    graf zeppelin New Member

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    I agree 100%. You know, Jimmy Dean was also this sort of guy, and he's dead lol. It only takes one event, a situation that likely wont be under your control, and that moment will put the merits of the arguments of this thread right at the fore.

    I have nothing to learn by not wearing a helmet. Before I go out for a ride, I have the memory of seeing a loved one in a head trauma unit to remind me that I want my helmet, simply in the hope that it might help, should it come into play. Cycling is full of risks and thrills irregardless of whether or not you wear a helmet.

    I assure you its just as thrilling to barnstorm off the top of a mountain at 50+ mph, to ride up a long climb faster than you've managed to do so before, to sprint against the clock to beat your best time or your best friend (lol). Helmets have little to do with defraying the joys of any of that. Its your choice surely, I just hope you dont learn the hard way.
     
  7. leestevens

    leestevens New Member

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    Besides, I can put my fist through most bicycle helmets. They're just made out of thin plastic and styrofoam (the same stuff used for beer coolers). How is that supposed to protect your noodle? Trust me, if the wheel of a car runs over your head a bike helmet won't do a damned thing.[/QUOTE]

    I hit the back of a bus at about 40 km/h with a twenty dollar Kmart (Wall mart in America) helmet. If it had not been for that helmet i dont know where i could have ended up. On the ther hand if it is a blisteringly hot day (38 Degrees C) i will take my helmet of for the uphill, as soon as i'm at the top, on it goes. :D
     
  8. John Picton

    John Picton New Member

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    Agreed! A car running over your head will hurt a lot, whether you are wearing a helmet or not!! But what about those minor falls where a helmet can prevent a head injury. Image standing stationary on your bike upright then leaning over til you fall - imagine the sort of force your head may hit the bitumen at, without even moving forward on your bike! This is the sort of situation where a helmet can save the day.

    In my case - 10mph, hit a patch of ice, landed on my left hand side but my head hit the ground like a pendulum. 2 cracked ribs and a badly bruised thumb was the outcome, as even though I naturally moved my hands forward during the fall I still hit my head. Helmet was a write off, head wasn't even scratched. Helmet every time for me, even on the uphills. Helmets are not uncomfortable if you get one that fits properly.
     
  9. artmichalek

    artmichalek New Member

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    I don't know about that. I'm only 23 and I've already clued into the fact that no matter how great of a rider I am, the average SUV pilot isn't watching out for anything lighter than three tons. The only times I've ever really gotten hurt it's been because of someone else's mistake.
     
  10. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    Many younger people of course have a realistic view of risk and the desire to protect themselves from everyday injury; I was one of them too.

    Statistically, believe we much more likely to crash on our own or with other bikes rather than being run over by an SUV. A pack crash, or a spot of grease or gravel at just the wrong place on a twisty descent can catch anyone out and cause a bad fall.

    I had a couple of "lurid moments" last year where too much downhill speed required hard braking on poor or wet surfaces. As many years as I been riding, it's still easy to get carried away with the fun of hard cornering in fast downhill turns. Testing the limits of tire grip on poor roads is something I try very hard to avoid.
     
  11. meehs

    meehs New Member

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    I was on a group ride where a guy went over the bars, broke his collar bone and destroyed his helmet. And we weren't really even going very fast at the time! The ER doctor told him that he almost certainly would've suffered a severe head injury had he not been wearing his helmet. I'd heard a lot of stories similar to this but it's a lot different when you actually witness it!

    That being said I still don't always wear my helmet. 99% of the time I do but when I go on a slow ride on the bike path (around the lake or whatever) with "non-cyclist" friends, I don't always wear a helmet even though I probably should. I definitely wear my helmet on all of my "real" rides though.
     
  12. TKOS

    TKOS New Member

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    I have never needed my seatbelt to protect me in a crash. But I wear it everytime I get in my car.

    It is like buying insurence. You pay all the time and hope never to recoup the cost. But it is darn nice to know that if something happens you will have it.
     
  13. ilovman

    ilovman New Member

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    i'm a cyclist and wear a helmet every time i go out. In my younger years (remember the leather strap helmets? :D ) at one of the track races a guy was overtaking the bunch on the outside and got his front wheel stuck on the "lip" of the track. He tried getting the wheel back on track but ended up hitting his head on a concrete light pole. He cracked his skull and didn't live to tell the tale. All that was left on the track was a massive blood stain running from the top of the track all the way to the bottom. I am sure that if he was wearing one of todays helmets he may have walked away with a very sore head but alive.

    I also ride horses and my one friend lost her sister who was thrown from her horse, hit her head and died.

    As kids we never wore helmets, knee pads or elbow pads. We grew up with bumps and scrapes. I will not overprotect my kids with the elbow/knee pads but when it comes to the head they gotta wear the goods!!!!
     
  14. OCRoadie

    OCRoadie New Member

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    Here's my two cents-
    If your single, have no children and no family that will miss you when your gone or have to change your diapers when your brain dead, then take all the risks you like. On the other hand, if you can't support your family or raise your children because your ego won't let you wear a helmet and you end up dead or vegged then just don't ride, take up another activity. Are helmets really that uncomfortable and cumbersome? I have never had an issue with them and it's just second nature to wear one whenever I saddle up. Do those of you against helmets think that your bike handling and riding skills are so great that you will never crash? Do you have that much trust in the driving skills of everyon you share the road with? You can be the best rider in the world, but that's not going keep cars or other cyclists from causing an accident, not to mention tons of other unpredictable obstacles/incidents that would result in a crash.
     
  15. meehs

    meehs New Member

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    Oh yeah! I was going to say one other thing in my previous response and forgot. And that is:

    If someone is childish enough that they feel they have to make derogatory comments about your helmet, WHO CARES??? Anyone who would make fun of a cyclist for wearing a helmet is an idiot worthy of being completely ignored. If this is something that actually bothers you to the point that you feel uncomfortable wearing a helmet, you have some issues that you need to work-out.
     
  16. grampy bone

    grampy bone New Member

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    I like the look of some of the new helmets. I have a Giro Pneumo and it has many vents and just looks aero. The only thing I don't like is the wierd tan marks it leaves on my balding head.

    It's silly to argue over whether one should wear a helmet so I won't get into that.
     
  17. Uptown

    Uptown New Member

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    I dunno if this will sway any non helmet wearers but last year riding pretty slow around a corner i managed to hit a rock or something and fall and tear up a lot of my body including my upper lip. I have a pretty bad scar there now which isnt too great being only 17 and all. Anyways I started wearing a helmet and gloves after that (not sure it woulda helped my face on that accident) and it just seems like now that i have the helmet and gloves i can fall safer i guess? I've fallen at least a couple of times at a much higher speed than that crash and knowing the helmet and gloves are there it allows me to i guess fall into them instead of hurting other parts of my body.
     
  18. dbianucci

    dbianucci New Member

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    I haven't read through all 50+ replies to this thread, so this may be a repeat. But wanted to raise two points to the original post.

    1) I can speak from experience that the helmet absorbs a ton of force. I crashed last summer, went down hard on my head and walked away. So I believe the helmet helps. Having said that, my point is that I need to set a good example for my two kids. If you believe the helmet has redeeming value (I do) then you have to practice what you preach to the young riders. They are the ones who are most likely to be crashing, whether it's because they are just learning to ride or if they are going off ramps in the driveway (like I did when I was a kid).

    2) As for comments from others on your helmet, are these the same overweight slugs who are out for their monthly sniff of fresh air? Screw them, they're just pissed because they don't dare try to stuff their bodies into Lycra...and thank God for that.[​IMG]
     
  19. John Picton

    John Picton New Member

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    This is something I had been meaning to post in this thread but never got around to. You've hit the nail on the head. If nothing else, do it for the kids.
     
  20. Rompinrhino

    Rompinrhino New Member

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    Lance and the TT Helmet
    I just picked up a copy of Lance's first book a few weeks ago. I'm not a big Lance fan, but he does address this issue. He states that on a training ride after his chemo, he was descending without a helmet and got a flat, went headfirst into a brick wall. Now he doesnt ride without one, with rare exception. This is also something he brings to his team, in old tours you usually see the Postal guys riding with helmets when others were not. I guess he never felt it as much of an issue in Time Trials, the courses are closed, and they usually dont have a dangerous descent, or a hundred other guys surrounding you.

    Flimsy Helmet Debate
    I find it interesting that there are people out there stating that helmets are flimsy. Put your fist through one? Hardly. The Atmos helmet is a good example. It has a Carbon roll cage inside it, you can see it. I bet if you try and put your fist through it, your going to really hurt your hand. Other companys make equally decent helmets, you dont have to buy the Wallmart, beer cooler foam special for 5 bucks. I agree that there are really bad helmets out there, and you can usually find them in places like Wallmart. 30 dollars these days will buy you a really decent helmet.

    Ventilation
    People's excuse that they dont wear a helmet because it's too hot is really a poor argument. Like I stated above, the technology has come a long way, and many helmets can be bought that you hardly notice your wearing one. I wear the Atmos, and it keeps my head really cool. The only time I will take my helmet off is climbing uphill on a day where the temps are over 90 degrees. The grade has to be really steep and long though because its not worth the time cooling to remove it for a short hill. I'll take the helmet off, strap it to my handlebars, and when I reach the top, I put it back on before I descend the other side.

    My own experience
    I have crashed 3 times this year, 2 times I never landed on, nor came close to my head. The 3rd time happened just a month ago. I was doing a slow ride, going around a corner there was water in the road. I thought I had slowed enough, but I didnt, and the rear wheel sliped out on me. I crashed the same as I've crashed on my other two crashes. I landed on my side. This time was different though. I dont know if it was the angles or what, but my head slamed into the pavement. I had whiplash for two weeks after this happened. Anyway, so my head slamed into the pavement, and I rolled over onto my head, sliding on my helmet and my shoulder for about 10ft, with my bike, still cliped in, in the air. When I got up the only thing that hurt was my shoulder, but when I took my helmet off, it was cracked all the way through. The carbon roll cage was holding the helmet together. I think I owe a lot to Giro for the design they put into the Atmos. I've felt worse in dorm pillowfights.

    Conclusion
    I think that people should really sit down and evaluate what their health is worth. I know that when I was younger, I'm only 21 now, but even a few years ago, I did a lot of stupid things on my bike, and never hurt my head. I did the jumps, the stairs, the mountain biking without a helmet. I never thought to put one on, or planed on getting hurt. And I was stupid, but lucky that nothing ever happened. Helmets are a small investment. I have to buy a new helmet now, thats going to cost me $180, and I'm unemployed and really struggling, but thats a small price to pay for the security of knowing that my head is safe.
     
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