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Old September 28th, 2006, 02:09 PM   #1
Kathie Fry
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Default Do Skaters Need To Wear Helmets?

We had many helmet discussions in the old AskAbout forum, and because it is such an important topic, I'm bringing it to our new forum also. I will try to summarize our previous discussions:

At the end of many long and heated debates, I think we all agreed
  • It is safer to skate with a helmet, and risky to skate without one
  • It is very bad advice to tell another skater they do not need a helmet
Most of the debate in that discussion was the result of some skaters calling other skaters "idiots" or "stupid" for skating without a helmet and other skaters feeling that while people are risking a debilitating or deadly head injury if they skate without a helmet, the amount of risk a person is willing to take in their lives is a personal choice. Some people thought helmet advocates who insulted skaters without helmets only alienated those skaters, instead of convincing them to wear a helmet.
  • When you see someone skating without a helmet, do you say anything to them? How do you handle that situation? Unfortunately most of the skaters on our local bicycle trail in Venice Beach do not wear helmets, so it would be a never-ending task if I attempted to give advice to all of them.

  • Do only speed skaters and outdoor recreational skaters need to wear helmets? What about slalom skaters, roller dancers, artistic skaters, and recreational skaters in a roller rink?

  • Do you favor mandatory helmet laws? If you do, should they apply to all skaters, indoors and outdoors?
- Kathie

Last edited by Kathie Fry; September 28th, 2006 at 09:32 PM.
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Old September 28th, 2006, 06:03 PM   #2
Jon B.
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When you see someone skating without a helmet, do you say anything to them?
If I engage them in coversation, I will probably "suggest" they consider wearing a helmet, otherwise not. Down here a majority of motorcyclists don't even wear helmets, and far too many ride with flip-flops and shorts. If they don't respect it on a motorcycle, not likely they'll respect it on skates or a bicycle. One of my co-workers crashed on her bike and was airlifted to a crisis unit 100 miles away, she still rides, still wears no helmet. No comment.
Do only speed skaters and outdoor recreational skaters need to wear helmets? What about slalom skaters, roller dancers, artistic skaters, and recreational skaters in a roller rink?
In my opiniion, anyone on any form of transportation, excluding feet, that leaves their bodies exposed to impact with a surface harder than their cranium should wear a helmet. But I also think that anyone who engages in sexual activity outside of marriage should employ a condom. Yeah, sure they will.
Do you favor mandatory helmet laws? If you do, should they apply to all skaters, indoors and outdoors?
ABSOLUTELY NOT. I do not believe in mandatory anything. I think the government has already overstepped their bounds in regulating our private lives. I think everyone should be responsible for their actions, not hand the responsibility over to someone else. JB
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Old September 28th, 2006, 06:24 PM   #3
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Yes I believe in helmets. I'm on my fourth one in the last 14 months. The three I destroyed were during practice. I now make sure to wear my helmet for the fast skate at session as well. We had a meet last year where it was advertised that practice was in the afternoon. We all showed up and it was session And for the fast skate all the speedskaters put on their helmets. It really freaked the kids out that were there for session.
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Old September 28th, 2006, 06:32 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon B. View Post
When you see someone skating without a helmet, do you say anything to them?
If I engage them in coversation, I will probably "suggest" they consider wearing a helmet, otherwise not. Down here a majority of motorcyclists don't even wear helmets, and far too many ride with flip-flops and shorts. If they don't respect it on a motorcycle, not likely they'll respect it on skates or a bicycle. One of my co-workers crashed on her bike and was airlifted to a crisis unit 100 miles away, she still rides, still wears no helmet. No comment.
Do only speed skaters and outdoor recreational skaters need to wear helmets? What about slalom skaters, roller dancers, artistic skaters, and recreational skaters in a roller rink?
In my opiniion, anyone on any form of transportation, excluding feet, that leaves their bodies exposed to impact with a surface harder than their cranium should wear a helmet. But I also think that anyone who engages in sexual activity outside of marriage should employ a condom. Yeah, sure they will.
Do you favor mandatory helmet laws? If you do, should they apply to all skaters, indoors and outdoors?
ABSOLUTELY NOT. I do not believe in mandatory anything. I think the government has already overstepped their bounds in regulating our private lives. I think everyone should be responsible for their actions, not hand the responsibility over to someone else. JB
you never ever see a dance skater or artistic figure or single skater wearing a helmet during competition or in practice. once a girl did many years ago as she had to because of a head injury. should they wear them is another question, for practice couldnt hurt for sure.

Rick
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Old September 28th, 2006, 07:17 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Jon B. View Post
[COLOR="Blue"]In my opiniion, anyone on any form of transportation, excluding feet, that leaves their bodies exposed to impact with a surface harder than their cranium should wear a helmet.

But I also think that anyone who engages in sexual activity outside of marriage should employ a condom. Yeah, sure they will.
JB
I think people should wear helmets during sex. My wife and I wear bike helmets during sexual activity and I'm glad we do. Last week she cracked her helmet on the headboard and it may have saved her life.
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Old September 28th, 2006, 09:20 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon B. View Post
Do you favor mandatory helmet laws? If you do, should they apply to all skaters, indoors and outdoors?
ABSOLUTELY NOT. I do not believe in mandatory anything. I think the government has already overstepped their bounds in regulating our private lives. I think everyone should be responsible for their actions, not hand the responsibility over to someone else. JB
I have to agree with you there. I think that form of control is the wrong kind. I am more the type to go with EDUCATION and EXAMPLE to teach people about safety. The main problem, at least here in the States, is that many MANY people have become desensitized to things such as this, given the fact that EVERY chance the media can come up with, they throw in gruesome pictures and horrifying stories. It's a system set up to fail. I could talk for HOURS about this one, and what exactly is behind it, but I'll pass and leave what I've said as the end of my opinion.

Here in CA, it's actually illegal to ride a motorcycle or a bicycle without a helmet. I never see anyone on a motorcycle without a helmet, but find it rare for people around here to wear them on bicycles.
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Old September 29th, 2006, 03:04 AM   #7
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Are you stupid if you DON'T wear a helmet? Maybe, maybe not. Who am I to judge? Will I feel sorry for you if you crack your skull open in an incident? No.

Quote:
I think people should wear helmets during sex. My wife and I wear bike helmets during sexual activity and I'm glad we do. Last week she cracked her helmet on the headboard and it may have saved her life.
Yet another reason to wear helmets in your day!
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Old September 29th, 2006, 07:31 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by skaterdog View Post
I think people should wear helmets during sex. My wife and I wear bike helmets during sexual activity and I'm glad we do. Last week she cracked her helmet on the headboard and it may have saved her life.
skaterdog, once again, you boldly go where others fear to tread...

that said, i'm just wondering, do helmets inhibit certain contact? I have an image of two people trying to kiss with helmets on, and pretty much not doing more than bouncing of eachother's helmet.

"Thanks for sharing!"
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Old September 29th, 2006, 01:15 PM   #9
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Default helmets

Where I skate there are many rec path skaters. I am the only freestyler on cones so it invites lots of watchers and questions (from skaters and pedestrians). Skating cones prompted 3 purchases; slalom skates, mini cones and a HELMET. I feel stupid that I didn't wear one when I was just a rec skater. I won't preach, but I know all the skaters at our local spot, and they have all asked why I started wearing one. I explain how easy it is to lose an edge or catch wheels when learning/practicing tricks. That is when I strongly suggest they spend $40 for the cheapest insurance they can buy. My sister (who is an RN) slipped on a set of stairs at a restaurant 5 yrs ago. When she fell, she fell forward on a fly, and smashed her head at the bottom. Besides the punctured lung, she did major damage to her optic nerves in her right eye. She spent that Xmas in a coma (for 5 days) and now after several operations, 2 years of rehab etc she has severe permanent vision and balance problems.
Just a couple of weeks ago one of our older path skaters (he is 56) was cut off by a kid on a bike at dusk. He wears no pads, and NO helmet. He went down backwards and is now recovering from a fractured skull/plate installed. I don't believe in mandatory laws, but for heavens sake...PLEASE WEAR ONE!!! I remember when I learned years ago to ride motorcycles (which I gave up due to the danger) the instructor explained that while forward momentum (and hitting a solid object) effects head injuries the major injury occurs from the pendulum effect of the head hitting the ground from the height to the ground. It's the same on a bicycle. If you fall sideways while sitting on a bike your head drops 4-6 feet (sideways) to the ground. Drop an 10 pound bowling ball from 5 feet to the ground (no forward motion involved) and thats what your skull is up against. On skates it can be worse. On my twisters my head is 6'6" off the ground......go to the store and spend the money, it is worth it.
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Old September 29th, 2006, 02:14 PM   #10
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Let's think of it in a community mind-set. How many people are being cared for long-term by home-health-aide on the government's dime? Is it fiscally judicious to spend a little now on regulation or to spend a LOT more later on those aides? I think regulation is more economically sound.

Having said that, I still believe that it is the people's choice. Obviously, more people want regulation, or it wouldn't exist. I, myself, love the fact that NY made smoking in restaurants, malls, etc., illegal. However, I hate that NY mandates hands-free cell phones.

As far as helmets, when I'm riding my bike, I can hear cars approaching from behind better without a helmet. Wind noise is terrible with a helmet on. In the country (where I live, yes!), I ride without a helment, and I skate without one. However, if I'm riding in the city, I just always assume that there is a car behind me, so the helmet works for me in that setting.

In the skate park, or anywhere where the risk is higher, helmet, pads, wristguards, the works
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Old September 29th, 2006, 02:24 PM   #11
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Cool oooh noooo

lol... I thought for a couple of weeks after the erection of this forum;

"when will it happen" ... . - not even IF it would happen...

and yes! here we have it! the purple-headed debate about helmets....
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Old September 29th, 2006, 03:03 PM   #12
Kathie Fry
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Yes, it had to happen eventually, and this time I started the discussion myself because in another thread a skater actually told another skater they don't need to wear a helmet. People have a right to choose how much personal risk they will take, but I don't like to hear a skater advising someone else to risk not wearing a helmet. What if the helmetless skater fell and had a serious head injury or died?

- Kathie
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Old September 29th, 2006, 06:32 PM   #13
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Mandatory helmet law? Not sure, but there is a helmet law for bicycles where I live now. I've got a collection of broken helmets to show folks why I wear a helmet. The only time I don't wear a helmet is during session skating. Speed pratice - yes, outdoor skating - yes, cycling road or mountain - yes.
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Old September 29th, 2006, 07:14 PM   #14
Kathie Fry
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Quote:
Here in CA, it's actually illegal to ride a motorcycle or a bicycle without a helmet
I'm pretty sure California's mandatory helmet laws only cover children under age 18 on bicycles, skateboards, inline skates, quad roller skates, and scooters. Only the motorcycle helmet law covers adults. Here is more about those laws:

California's Helmet Laws:
- California Helmet Law for Bicycles, Scooters, Skateboards, and Skates (PDF)
- California Motorcycle Helmet Law

Other Mandatory Bicycle Helmet Laws
- Helmet Laws in the United States
- Helmet Laws in Other Countries

- Kathie
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Old September 29th, 2006, 10:32 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KathieFry View Post
I'm pretty sure California's mandatory helmet laws only cover children under age 18 on bicycles, skateboards, inline skates, quad roller skates, and scooters. Only the motorcycle helmet law covers adults. Here is more about those laws:

California's Helmet Laws:
- California Helmet Law for Bicycles, Scooters, Skateboards, and Skates (PDF)
- California Motorcycle Helmet Law

Other Mandatory Bicycle Helmet Laws
- Helmet Laws in the United States
- Helmet Laws in Other Countries

- Kathie
Oh wow! For some reason, I was under the impression it was for all ages. Hmm...I wonder how I had that impression. I originally thought it might be because the law was put in place when I was about 16, but that's not the case...it has a 2002 date on the bottom of when it was filed and such, meaning I was 22 at the time. Interesting!

Thanks for letting me know!
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Old September 30th, 2006, 12:21 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Jibberish18 View Post
Will I feel sorry for you if you crack your skull open in an incident? No.
It would not make me feel better not to feel sorry.

Quote:
When you see someone skating without a helmet, do you say anything to them?
No. I try to respect others' decisions, even if they are wrong to me.
One exception: If I as "bladeguard" of the skatenights in Munich see people skating&pushing a helmet-less child in a stroller or pram, I talk to them.

Quote:
Do only speed skaters and outdoor recreational skaters need to wear helmets?
For me it's not a matter of indoor or outdoor, but of speed and height and skating abilities.
Assessment in my case:
Height: I don't jump on skates.
Skating ability: Pretty good.
Speed: Relatively fast.
My decision: Always were a helmet plus full protection, although I only fell maybe 7 or 8 times in my almost 10 years of plain skating (no artistics). May be I am a coward, but that's okay.

Quote:
Do you favor mandatory helmet laws?
Mandatory helmet laws would need enforcement. Is this really the most urgent task for the police today? I am not so sure.
And then we would have to comment in another thread to discuss these laws...
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Old October 1st, 2006, 04:59 AM   #17
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I believe that everyone has a responsibility to wear full protection due to the fact the some kid will see you and copy the way you conduct yourself. We are not skating in a vacuum but are role models to new potential skaters. This sport has gotten a bad rap by so many people who have tried to skate and just have given it up due to injuries in the first few times they've skated due to lack of protection. This message is for the stupid ones who think they are real skaters but really have no clue.

As for the real skaters like myself, we know why it is mandatory.




Falls Happen !
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Old October 1st, 2006, 07:05 AM   #18
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Quote:
It would not make me feel better not to feel sorry.
I wouldn't make me feel better NOT to feel sorry for you. I just wouldn't feel too bad for you because wearing a helmet could've probably prevented your skull being cracked open. Depends though. If a car hit you and it was the cars fault then I'd feel pretty bad. But if you were learning to skate or were even a veteran and you decide that you're too good for a helmet then I would NOT feel too bad for you!

Quote:
I believe that everyone has a responsibility to wear full protection due to the fact the some kid will see you and copy the way you conduct yourself.
Excellent point! So many people that I've talked to think they look "stupid" wearing a helmet or protective gear! My girl included. Honestly I feel if these people saw others wearing protective gear they'd feel more comfortable. Either way though, thinking you look "stupid" is a pretty dumb reason not to wear protective gear.
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Old October 1st, 2006, 06:42 PM   #19
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in my opinion, every skater should wear helmets. Accidents happen when you least expect, and a bad fall can leave a skater in a coma, paralyzed for life, or even dead. So even if the risk of falling is small, the consequences could be catastrophic, hence, the safeguards should be in place.

Mandatory laws? For children, absolutley? For adults, i'm not so sure, and would need to be better informed before saying...
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Old October 1st, 2006, 07:36 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KathieFry View Post
What if the helmetless skater fell and had a serious head injury or died?

- Kathie
In the northern provinces of america a lawsuit will follow, having somebody pay loads of money.

In europe (wich exepts switzerland) people would say: was hes own fault, too bad.

The big difference being one's own responsibility to take - mind you; to take, not to force upon, nor to carry by somebody else.

I wear a helmet always when i put on skates, and advise other to do too.

that's all i have to say and actually the first three sentences of this topic are all there is. too much debate. let's skate !
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Last edited by janneman; October 1st, 2006 at 07:39 PM. Reason: add some important
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