Not wearing a helmet at DC- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Not wearing a helmet at DC

    I was at South Mountainís Desert Classic trail this morning and encountered, almost head on, a biker who was in a big hurry, luckily I moved to one side (abruptly) without any problems. I turn to look back and noticed that "Mr. I'm in hurry" was not wearing a helmet. Several yards later I noticed five more bikers without helmets. What gives? Is this a new trend or is the weather too hot.

    If the weather is too hot for a helmet then buy one like mine, a Specialized S-works. Itís light and has large vents. But one doesnít have to buy a top of the line helmet, there are dozens of brands to choose from at different price ranges. The important thing is to wear a helmet. Itís the best insurance policy you can buy for your head.

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  2. #2
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    ok thanks.

  3. #3
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    I recommend not wearing a helmet whenever it's too hot or you don't feel like wearing one.
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  4. #4
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  5. #5
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    The other day I chose to put my helmet in my pack for the ride up National (really hot) then put it on for the ride down Geronimo, it worked out great. Just sayin....
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  6. #6
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    Cool-blue Rhythm

    Yes, Mother....I will wear my helmet ALL the time. Which shorts/Shirt should I wear and what sock/gloves will go with the shirt? I wouldn't want anything to "clash" with your helmet choice.
    Everyday of my life, I'm forced to add another name to the list of people that piss me off!

  7. #7
    ook
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    And should I wear a black cap under the helmet too?
    That will surely make it cooler.

  8. #8
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    Wow, tough crowd

    It reminds me of the motorcycle group and whether motorcycle helmets should be mandatory or not. (Different topic for a different forum)

    Granted Iím old fashion and concerned about peopleís safety especially regarding mountain biking. And plus I had a few crushes where I hit my head extremely hard.

    Just an observation and recommendation folks.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by StudioDino
    It reminds me of the motorcycle group and whether motorcycle helmets should be mandatory or not. (Different topic for a different forum)

    Granted Iím old fashion and concerned about peopleís safety especially regarding mountain biking. And plus I had a few crushes where I hit my head extremely hard.

    Just an observation and recommendation folks.
    This is a little different than the motorcycle crowd since no one here is adverse to wearing a helmet. It's kind of like telling us we should use tires everytime we ride. We're all extreme all-terrain mountain cyclists that know the value of a good skid lid. Hell, I wear my full facer to the grocery store just so I can walk around with it under my arm like the motorcycle guys. That works with the ladies until we get outside and I can't remember the combo on my bike lock and have to ask for a ride.

  10. #10
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    Studio:

    This one time I rode without my helmet and didnít crash. One time I rode accidentally with my helmet on backwards and didnít crash. One time I rode with my helmet on for only part of the ride and didnít crash. And one time I wore my helmet all the time and I did crash. So now I am really confused whether I should or shouldn't wear my helmet or only wear it part of the time or maybe even wear it backwards.
    Anyway, you seem to have some pretty good ideasÖ. What should I do?

    Thx,

    Tiny

  11. #11
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    I used to not wear a helmet (loooooooooooong time ago) until I crashed and came down head first next to a nice big pointy rock.

    A helmet may or may not save you from serious injury, but your odds of injury must go down when wearing one.

    If people want to take that chance, it is thier choice. Studio Dino was just trying to shed some light on a well vented helmet.

    For me, no helmet=no ride.

  12. #12
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    ive hit my head on low branches a million times but never in a crash. I forgot my helmet one time, it was funny how many people yelled at me to get a helmet.

    funny post. He is yelling at people via the internet.

    I yelled at a lady this morning cause she was letting her leashed dog run in the middle of the road a foot from the double yellow and her son ride his bike in the middle of the other lane on anklam where it is both hilly and twisty.

  13. #13
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    I'd like to yell at the lady with her uncontrolled dog and kid via the Internet!

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  14. #14
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    I was out there yesterday morning with the Mrs. and we both noticed...lots of helmetless riders. Whatever. If your bike is worth more than 10 bucks you can afford a helmet. Just a matter of priorities and I'm not one to tell those guys that their priorities are completely whacked because I'm not one to preach. I mean, I'd never come out and just blatantly just say that not wearing a helmet while riding is completely retarded. I mean, who am I? However, I can credit a helmet with the fact that I can still form coherent sentences and feed myself.
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  15. #15
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    Everyone:

    All good ideas (and a few jabs as well). Perhaps I should have yell at the guyó and several others tooóto wear a helmet, instead of using this forum. Or just let it go and keep quiet, and hope that helmet-less wearers donít become wards of the state.

    Again, itís a observation that I have been noticing for several weeks now and I wanted to address it.

    (Donít get me started on dog owners with unleashed dogs at Desert Classic. Weíll save that for another time)

    (BTW: the helmet is on a form roll, used for stretching/flexibility, and is not on a hat, see side view)

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  16. #16
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    Helmet laws suck

  17. #17
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    The only time actually needed my helmet was when I was playing around at the grade school with my son. I was doing manuals and pulled back too hard...all I saw was the pretty blue sky and my bike above me with my feet still clipped in. Then bam! Landed flat on my back and got the whiplash action...bounced my gourd of the dirt. Didn't even know I hit my head until I saw the dirt embedded in it (the air getting knocked out of me may distracted me).Luckily I had my helmet on, normal I don't wear it when just riding around the 'hood. Now I do...Learned my lesson.
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  18. #18

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    sometimes i wear my lid, sometimes not - never on the way up though, depends on how aggressive i'll be ridin back down but i wish i had time to stop and listen to all the 'sensible' people yell advice to me about how i should conduct my life, hate those idiots, mind yer own.....
    good on yer Studio for keepin it shut, if only others would too.

  19. #19

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    Freedom of choice if you want to wear one or not, I will not vote for mandatory helmet laws (Mo-bike or bicycles) but if I plan a big ride up north or some shuttle run and someone shows up to our group ride without a helmet I offer an extra one I bring with (Just for those cases) and if they don’t want to use it (because it’s not cool or other dumb reasons) that’s their choice but they won’t be invited next time. Why? If you ever been on a group ride or any event and someone gets hurt bad it ruins the fun for everyone else and the day is usually over, you can spend the next hour or longer waiting for someone to get help or the medics to arrive. I may not wear one when just riding up a long hill climb on a forest road but anywhere there is high speed or cliffs it’s only smart to wear one. Granted you can get hurt anytime, anywhere including walking to your mailbox but why take unnecessary chances especially when other riders are involved. Why ruin their fun because your brains are splattered on National trail or Six Shooter. The good thing is, there are people who could use your kidneys and other organs.

  20. #20
    dirt visionary
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    Quote Originally Posted by eabos
    The other day I chose to put my helmet in my pack for the ride up National (really hot) then put it on for the ride down Geronimo, it worked out great. Just sayin....
    Agreed I recently did the same thing attached to my back climbing up national and put it on before going back down national
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  21. #21
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    Personal Choice...

    When does it end? Will you make sure they brush their teeth after every meal? How about telling them to pass up desert? I say riding with earphones in is more dangerous than riding without a helmet...

  22. #22
    ook
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    Wearing a helmet is less confining than sitting in a wheelchair...

  23. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by ook
    Wearing a helmet is less confining than sitting in a wheelchair...
    I believe thats a personal choice.

    Telling me what to do almost always results in me doing exactly the opposite.

    Except when I deduce that you are clever enough to figure it out, and tell me to do the exact opposite of what you really want.


    It's a good thing I generally ignore the "suggestions" of others and just do what I was going to do anyway.

  24. #24
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    I don't think anyone's advocating helmet laws in here. I'm not, and I'm the biggest mother-hen type you'll ever meet.

    The benefits of wearing a helmet are self-evident. Personally, I'll never hit the dirt without one (having destroyed several in my riding career). But I'll ride a canal from time to time without one.

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  25. #25
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    I think the OP just wanted us to see his totally *****in helmet.

  26. #26
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    Iím cool with someone riding without a helmet as long as they ride a sweet bike and I can pry it out of their dead hands and take it home to add to my collection of rides.

    I have absolutely no need for more bikes though. Mo is betta tho?

  27. #27
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    I never take mine off...

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leethal
    Personal Choice...

    When does it end? Will you make sure they brush their teeth after every meal? How about telling them to pass up desert? I say riding with earphones in is more dangerous than riding without a helmet...

    Personal choice is a meaningless term because it is relative. Freedoms have limits. One limit is that society needs laws that restrict choices. Society has laws to protect us from both ourselves and others and Yetisurly.

    If you want to talk about real restrictions on freedom, just look at the Bush administration and what is has accomplished as a result of fear.

    Helmet law or no helmet law be damned. My personal opinion is that it is very foolish to ride without a helmet. As to music, from my own experience I have hit my head and been protected by a helmet from certain injury several times, sometimes with music and sometimes without. I disagree strongly that wearing headphones is more dangerous than not wearing a helmet. Nonethless, all that be damned. I am much more outraged that so many drivers are freaking unsafe. Too close, too fast, too stupid. Drivers seriously need to slow down.
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  29. #29
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    I just look at it this way, if you are out riding without a helmet and you crash and crack your head, I will probably call help for you, but I might not hang out till help arrives. It all depends on my mood you could say considering you did have the option to wear a helmet and you chose not to.

  30. #30
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    Funny stuff. I don't think the intent of this thread was meant to be preaching, rather just a reminder that it's probably a good idea to protect your assets. In some cases, there may be no assets worth protecting, I suppose.

    Regardless, I make it a habit to use as much safety equipment as possible, and still enjoy the ride. I find there are times when riding National that I hit a rock with the front tire and get stalled, falling sideways or perhaps even rolling backward and falling. Most times I am lucky and hit an elbow, arm, hip, or leg. Sometimes I stumble and hit my head. Sure glad I have my helmet when that happens.

    Those who make a decision or choice not to wear a helmet are normally somewhat aware of the risk, and choose to take it. However, each time you get away with it, you're one incident closer to not getting away with it.

    How many times over the years have I seen the posts here about someone who has been injured? So, is the next ride YOUR turn?
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  31. #31
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    I usually wear my helmet, but I leave it off for extended climbs. However, I hate all the harping about helmets. If someone doesn't want to wear one, that's their choice. Hitting your head during a XC crash is rare, and the speeds are so low that it doesn't really matter anyway. You probably hit 25 mph tops on DC. Think of all the other things you do that are dangerous. Do you wear a helmet while: driving, working on a ladder, rock climbing, walking on the side-walk (pedestrians are more likely to get tagged by a car than cyclists)? Do you ever ride a road bike? I don't know the statistics, but I would bet that riding on the road in Tucson or Phoenix with a helmet is significantly more dangerous than mountain biking without a helmet.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by AzSpeedfreek
    I just look at it this way, if you are out riding without a helmet and you crash and crack your head, I will probably call help for you, but I might not hang out till help arrives. It all depends on my mood you could say considering you did have the option to wear a helmet and you chose not to.
    I've never walked away from a helmetless crash victim, but I've always resented the fact I've had to sit around with them because they (probably) ended up in worse shape for having not worn a helmet.

    This situation has probably come up, really, three times in 15 years.

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  33. #33
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    It was better for my health the day I put it on my back instead of my head. I was pouring buckets of water and having a very hard time breathing in my full face helmet. I was on my way back up national to get to my truck. Anytime I was able to get a flow going the helmet went back on but during the climb up widow maker and a few other spots my helmet was overheating me to a point of shut down . Was not a good day to be climbing back up national around 8:30-9.
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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by dthomp325
    I usually wear my helmet, but I leave it off for extended climbs. However, I hate all the harping about helmets. If someone doesn't want to wear one, that's their choice. Hitting your head during a XC crash is rare, and the speeds are so low that it doesn't really matter anyway. You probably hit 25 mph tops on DC. Think of all the other things you do that are dangerous. Do you wear a helmet while: driving, working on a ladder, rock climbing, walking on the side-walk (pedestrians are more likely to get tagged by a car than cyclists)? Do you ever ride a road bike? I don't know the statistics, but I would bet that riding on the road in Tucson or Phoenix with a helmet is significantly more dangerous than mountain biking without a helmet.
    This is just wrong and based on faulty speculation. The correct speculation is that hitting your head during an actual XC crash is fairly common and that typical speeds are much more than sufficient to cause significant injury without a helmet (or even with one).

    In addition, your speculation as to the danger of other activities is not only faulty speculation but largely irrelevant. Whether walking, screwing a porcupine, eating poison or climbing Mt. Everest are all irrelevant to the issue of wearing a helmet while biking. The issue is simple...helmet v. no helmet, not hangliding vs. no helmet. And finally, I disagree with your premise of "more dangerous." Yes, driving and some of the other activities you mention are probably more likely to kill you, however, based on the amount of driving and walking I do vs. the amount of mountain biking I do and the times I have been injured in each of those activities, I speculate that I have a greater chance of falling and injuring myself riding a mountain bike than I do driving or walking. The degree of injury may be low, but the amount of accidents per activity is high. With that in mind, helmets are extremely important.
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  35. #35
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    I bet the toothless guy who asked me for fifty cents while I was pumping gas this morning didnít wear his helmet.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirdir
    This is just wrong and based on faulty speculation. The correct speculation is that hitting your head during an actual XC crash is fairly common and that typical speeds are much more than sufficient to cause significant injury without a helmet (or even with one).

    In addition, your speculation as to the danger of other activities is not only faulty speculation but largely irrelevant. Whether walking, screwing a porcupine, eating poison or climbing Mt. Everest are all irrelevant to the issue of wearing a helmet while biking. The issue is simple...helmet v. no helmet, not hangliding vs. no helmet. And finally, I disagree with your premise of "more dangerous." Yes, driving and some of the other activities you mention are probably more likely to kill you, however, based on the amount of driving and walking I do vs. the amount of mountain biking I do and the times I have been injured in each of those activities, I speculate that I have a greater chance of falling and injuring myself riding a mountain bike than I do driving or walking. The degree of injury may be low, but the amount of accidents per activity is high. With that in mind, helmets are extremely important.

    Yes, wearing a helmet is safer then not wearing one (which is why I do), but in the big picture, XC mountain biking is a relatively safe activity, and you probably do lots of other stuff that is way more dangerous per hour of activity, even if you don't wear a helmet.You can ride every day, without a helmet, and your chances of a serious (concussion+) head injury are still low. It just makes me mad that people who maybe willing to accept the risk of much more dangerous activities like road biking, skiing, water sports, etc, have the nerve to tell someone they're an 'idiot' if they don't wear a helmet. I don't disagree with wearing helmets, I just dis-agree with those who feel the need to preach it.

  37. #37
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    Sometimes a person's role in this life is to serve as an example to others as to what not to do. ie, fall, hit head, take short bus every day.

    I personally don't care if others not in my group of friends wear helmets. They can all land on their heads for being stupid.

  38. #38
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    ".You can ride every day, without a helmet, and your chances of a serious (concussion+) head injury are still low."


    I think that my friend that while not wearing his helmet on a road bike in a parking lot lost his balance and cracked his head upon impact and ended up in the ICU for 2 days with a severe concussion and a total hospital stay of 5 days might just dissagree with you. He has been riding regulary/serious for about 8 years and wears his helmet 99% of the time. BTW he was just going across the street and lost his balance with nothing to cushion his fall/head but ashphalt, not even a pointy rock just ashphalt.

    On a positive note however the doctors were able to confirm that he does have a brain .

  39. #39
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    The Bicycle Helmet Research Organization stated that more serious head injuries were a result of angular or rotational acceleration leading to serious brain injuries, which resulted in death or chronic intellectual disablement, and that research has shown that helmets were not designed to mitigate rotational injuries. Some doctors have expressed concern that head injuries incurred when wearing a helmet may convert direct (linear) forces to rotational ones, resulting in injuries with serious long-term consequences.

    Personally, I think helmets should be worn, but I don't think anyone especially a lawyer should force anyone to do something which a person of average intelligence would choose to do anyway.
    Ask people why they smoke and you'll probably get the same reaction. People take risks when they think the pay-off (feeling good now, not having nasty sweaty hair, not having to lug a helmet around; getting a nicotine buzz) is greater than the potential harm (death due to this direct cause). Just because their risk assessment doesn't match your own does not mean they're bad, or stupid, or in need of lectures?

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by NardoSS
    Sometimes a person's role in this life is to serve as an example to others as to what not to do. ie, fall, hit head, take short bus every day.

    I personally don't care if others not in my group of friends wear helmets. They can all land on their heads for being stupid.

    Thats like me saying I hope you trip while walking down the sidewalk or an isle of a grocery store hitting your head on a curb or shelf .

    You can hit your head on everything known to man and very easily ,so does that mean helmets should be worn 24/7.
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  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff F
    Just because their risk assessment doesn't match your own does not mean they're bad, or stupid, or in need of lectures?
    The issues of risk assessment, lectures, the lecturing being lectured by the lectured for lecturing, stupidity, helmet law, head injury research and so on will all lead to a tangled web of lies and anger. As such, I am simply going to throw it all out there and set forth my un-filtered opinion on several issues in the following order of preference:

    The following acts should be punishable by death:

    1. Mountain biking without a helmet.
    2. Mountain biking without a shirt.
    3. If you mountain bike with a helmet, but no shirt, you are beyond death.
    4. Mountain biking with white tube socks.
    5. Wearing Dolphin shorts at any time.
    6. Posting any off topic material on one of Walt's ride reports.
    7. Shopping at Ikea.
    8. Ever voting for Bush.
    9. Supporting Hillary Clinton in the primary and then claiming you will vote for, and/or actually voting for, McCain. The only explanation for the cause of this offense is riding without a helmet and severely hitting one's head.
    10. Enjoying any aspect of High School Musical or Camp Rock.
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  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirdir
    The issues of risk assessment, lectures, the lecturing being lectured by the lectured for lecturing, stupidity, helmet law, head injury research and so on will all lead to a tangled web of lies and anger. As such, I am simply going to throw it all out there and set forth my un-filtered opinion on several issues in the following order of preference:

    The following acts should be punishable by death:

    5. Wearing Dolphin shorts at any time.
    7. Shopping at Ikea.
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  43. #43
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    My 6 year old niece thinks you're a poopyhead for dissing High School Musical.

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  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul B
    My 6 year old niece thinks you're a poopyhead for dissing High School Musical.

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  45. #45
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    it comes down to the classic- IT WILL NEVER HAPPEN TO ME! SYNDROME i think people should do whateva dey want, but realize that all choices bring consequences, some good and some not so good, and not wearing a helmet is pushing your luck. for the record, i would ride with someone who shunned helmets, and i hope they would ride with me in spite of the gyro E2 on top of my cranium. its a personal preference that should be respected. now, lets go RIDE!


    hey nice thread, Dino

  46. #46
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    I'm all for personal choice, but what happens when I ride up on a person whose head is splattered all across Desert Classic? What are my personal choices? I could either leave him there, probably resulting of death(maybe with a little exageration) in the summer, or I could help him, resulting in lots of wasted time and frustration for me. Like I already said, if he wants to go and make himself a stain on the trail, its fine by me, but I just don't wanna be the guy who rides up on him.

    FWIW, In order for me to count the times I've needed a helmet I would have to be barefoot or wearing sandals.

  47. #47
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    Interesting that there is very little duscussion about compassion for injured people. My compassion for others leads me to believe the following:

    1. My opinion on wearing helmets does not take into account the inconvenience I might encounter when coming upon an injured helmetless rider.

    2. My opinion does not take into account the issue of personal rights.

    3. My opinion strongly takes into account my desire to see as little injuries as possible.

    4. I believe that if 90% of riders strongly believe in wearing helmets and if this 90% strongly discourage going helmetless by either expressing their opinions about others and/or refusing to ride with helmetless people, there is a possibility that less people will get injured.
    I AM JUST A JERK

  48. #48
    sixsixtysix
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    If our parents had all started us wearing helmets as toddlers, this would be a non issue....



    Helmets are a personal choice, but by not choosing to wear one anytime you take your bike on a trail is just asking for it. It only takes that "one time" and you're done. The "I don't need it when pedaling up" mentality isn't any better than the "I just don't need one" mentality. I have seen more people wipe out while going uphill than I have going down.

    Just my 2Ę

  49. #49

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    I think we should wear helmets while driving. A friend of mine had his seat belt on, driving the speed limit, and rolled his vehicle only to be killed by his head hitting the window and door frame while seat belted in. Accident or should we pass a law?

    We could also require helmets at work, cut down on workmans comp, claims from slip and falls, lazy employees just hitting their head when not paying attention......


    Or---Ride at your own risk
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  50. #50

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    of course bikers should wear a helmet, its a dangerous sport if you choose to ride hard. But if you choose not to lid up then you shouldn't have to listen to pompous prats trying to limit your freedoms, that is what will increase the number of injuries related to this discussion. No point in anyone stating their experience nor me mine, it's mine and isn't relevant to you because we all have different skill levels and riding styles. just Ride.

  51. #51
    Ouch, I am hot!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrweelz
    of course bikers should wear a helmet, its a dangerous sport if you choose to ride hard. But if you choose not to lid up then you shouldn't have to listen to pompous prats trying to limit your freedoms, that is what will increase the number of injuries related to this discussion. No point in anyone stating their experience nor me mine, it's mine and isn't relevant to you because we all have different skill levels and riding styles. just Ride.
    The fact that the "individual freedom" people are always complaining about getting lectured here on MTBR or out on the trail or even anywhere else for not wearing a helmet undermines their position 100%. There is simply no meaningful danger that mountain biking helmet laws will be enacted. As such, the individual freedom issue simply does not exist.

    I think it all boils down to the fact that the "individual freedom" folks are saying we believe in individual freedom except when it comes to others expressing their beliefs about wearing helmets. That is, they are saying the pro-helmet folks should not exercise their individual freedom when it comes to expressing their beliefs as to wearing helmets. Put another way, the individual freedom people are simply whining.
    I AM JUST A JERK

  52. #52
    Rohloff
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    I was unloading my bike at the trailhead a few weeks ago and found I left my helmet back home, an hour away. I decided to cautiously ride without a helmet. I noticed two things: 1) My head felt vunerable. 2) It was a lot cooler riding without a helmet. I was surprised how nice it was. I have a nice helmet. Giro Pneumo.

  53. #53

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirdir
    That is, they are saying the pro-helmet folks should not exercise their individual freedom when it comes to expressing their beliefs as to wearing helmets. Put another way, the individual freedom people are simply whining.
    Ha, ok pal, next time some knobcheese shouts at me for havin no helmet, I'll allow him that freedom but i will exercise my freedom to test his theory on my safety sans lid and ride right into them at full speed. So maybe its not freedoms, but just mind yer own damn business then.

  54. #54
    EDR
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    Some people are just Socialists and want to "help" everyone. Thanks but no thanks. Keep it to yourself if I don't know you.

    And BTW, if you are not wearing a helmet, and you crash and hurt your noggin, I will stop and I will help you and I won't whine about it, in fact I'll be glad to help. And if I come across a bad car wreck I will stop and help out everyone I can, and I won't even ask who was wearing a seat belt before rendering aid.

    I won't ride on trails without a helmet. I rarely wear one in my neighborhood.

  55. #55

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    Where's Traildoc on this topic? I'm looking for World Class opinions and so far have read nothing in the world class realm, just waaaaaaa waaaaaa waaaaaaa wear your helmet or else!

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