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View Poll Results: Helmet wearing habits?

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  • I've never worn a bike helmet

    178 10.66%
  • I used to wear a helmet, but have stopped

    94 5.63%
  • I've always worn a helmet

    648 38.80%
  • I didn't wear a helmet, but now do

    408 24.43%
  • I sometimes wear a helmet depending on the conditions

    342 20.48%
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  1. #1126
    cycling up that hill johnandme's Avatar
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    Well, I'm new here and I was really surprised to see that people could get so worked up over personal choice. It's one thing if you give a bad example to your children or don't make them wear a helmet. Then it's not just your life at stake. Otherwise I think the biker should have a real good look at their style, their prefered speed and the outside conditions... and then consider if a helmet isn't a good idea. I used to go without a helmet. I live in a small town with hardly any traffic and bike roads nearly everywhere. I'm a safe driver. But now I'm doing cross country and sometimes mountain (or rather, hill) and I'm always with a helmet there, but more importantly with respect for possible dangers. I wish everyone on the road would look out a bit more for others.

    yeaaah, sorry, if this is the 10.000.000th post in the same vein. Please be kind
    Last edited by johnandme; 02-01-12 at 10:45 AM.

  2. #1127
    Senior Member Monster Pete's Avatar
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    It is indeed your personal choice, but please don't just take a helmet's protection for granted- they are designed to do less than you might think. For example, they are not designed for a collision with a motor vehicle- they are tested only for a simple fall onto the ground at zero speed. If the human anatomy was incapable of dealing with this kind of accident, we would have died out a long time ago.

    They are most useful for activities like mountain biking (falls more likely, tree branches/rocks etc sticking out to bash your head on) or for young children (also more likely to fall off, less developed skulls). In a high-speed crash, particularly involving a car (the most likely accident on good roads) it will be of little use. If you are a safe driver and ride your bike accordingly, this will do far more to prevent injury than any helmet.

    That said, if you want to wear one purely for a little extra protection, it probably won't do you any harm. The bare-headed just get rather annoyed when helmet-nannies proclaim anyone going without a lid is an idiot, an organ donor, irresponsible etc etc. Live and let live and everyone can be happy
    I've got a bike, you can ride if you like it's got a basket, a bell that rings and things to make it look good- Pink Floyd, 1967

  3. #1128
    Nobody mconlonx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by closetbiker View Post
    You'd have a different perspective if you lived in an area that has enacted a helmet law. I have and I do.
    Funny part about this is that pretty much nobody posting in this thread would support a MHL. Wherever those go into effect, you'll find it's mainly non-riders pushing for and enacting them...
    I know next to nothing. I am frequently wrong.

  4. #1129
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    Quote Originally Posted by hagen2456 View Post
    Weird reasoning. Leaves out that a large segment of helmet bearers are also helmet law advocates (at least here on these pages). Helmet skeptics fight helmet laws. Ergo will helmet skeptics have to try to convince some helmet bearers that helmet laws are bad, because helmets are not what helmet law advocates believe them to be.

    Please apply some basic logic to this issue.
    Not weird at all. Who here is advocating helmet laws? If you oppose specific laws, then why not single them out and argue against them and their actual proponents, instead of hypothetical ones? Again, though, I see no evidence here of anyone actually discussing real laws and how to repeal them.

  5. #1130
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    Quote Originally Posted by Monster Pete View Post
    It is indeed your personal choice, but please don't just take a helmet's protection for granted- they are designed to do less than you might think. For example, they are not designed for a collision with a motor vehicle- they are tested only for a simple fall onto the ground at zero speed. If the human anatomy was incapable of dealing with this kind of accident, we would have died out a long time ago.
    You make it sound almost as if you wouldn't mind falling and hitting your head, even at a 0 mph/kph. After all, the human body is resilient Remember, too, that a supposedly "simple fall onto the ground at zero speed" is what hospitalizes or kills hundreds of thousands each year--you needn't be moving at 30mph or get hit by a car to hurt your head from a fall. Further, what appears at first to be a minor bump on the head can in fact be a more serious or even fatal condition.

    http://www.cdc.gov/traumaticbraininjury/statistics.html
    http://www.cdc.gov/traumaticbraininjury/causes.html
    http://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreation...dultfalls.html
    http://articles.cnn.com/2009-03-18/h...y?_s=PM:HEALTH
    etc.

  6. #1131
    Back in the Saddle
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    Quote Originally Posted by Six-Shooter View Post
    You make it sound almost as if you wouldn't mind falling and hitting your head, even at a 0 mph/kph. After all, the human body is resilient Remember, too, that a supposedly "simple fall onto the ground at zero speed" is what hospitalizes or kills hundreds of thousands each year--you needn't be moving at 30mph or get hit by a car to hurt your head from a fall. Further, what appears at first to be a minor bump on the head can in fact be a more serious or even fatal condition.

    http://www.cdc.gov/traumaticbraininjury/statistics.html
    http://www.cdc.gov/traumaticbraininjury/causes.html
    http://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreation...dultfalls.html
    http://articles.cnn.com/2009-03-18/h...y?_s=PM:HEALTH
    etc.
    Based on that argument, we should be wearing a helmet all the time, in case we trip and fall while walking. :-D

    To me is a personal choice, and sometimes a matter of comfort. Group rides always require them it seems, so need to be comfortable wearing one in order to enjoy those rides, thus wearing one on most other rides helps with that. Helmet also provides some level of protection from the weather - wind, rain, sun. So I believe there is a side benefit there. I wear one on any ride where I'll be with auto traffic, when leading any rides with minors. I don't always wear one on the lightly traveled MUP by my house when on a cruiser/comfort bike, nor in my quiet neighborhood on a cruiser/comfort bike.

    To each his or her own on this - just like whether or not to wear bike shorts, clipless shoes, or a cycling jersey. The helmet should not get in the way of someone enjoying a ride
    Indianapolis IN
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  7. #1132
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    Quote Originally Posted by Monster Pete View Post
    It is indeed your personal choice, but please don't just take a helmet's protection for granted- they are designed to do less than you might think. For example, they are not designed for a collision with a motor vehicle- they are tested only for a simple fall onto the ground at zero speed.
    FWIW, some interesting info on bicycle helmet testing, standards, and limitations:

    Snell standards:

    http://www.smf.org/stds

    US Consumer Product Safety Commission testing standards:

    http://www.cpsc.gov/businfo/regsumbicyclehelmets.pdf

    http://www.bhsi.org/testing.htm

    See section 5. Not exactly zero speed.

    http://www.bhsi.org/limits.htm

    http://cyclehelmets.org/papers/c2023.pdf
    Last edited by Six-Shooter; 01-20-12 at 08:34 AM.

  8. #1133
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    Quote Originally Posted by rawhite1969 View Post
    Based on that argument, we should be wearing a helmet all the time, in case we trip and fall while walking. :-D
    That's already been discussed to death here, no pun intended As I noted last page, there are a host of safety precautions and devices people can apply to different situations. A helmet may be one part of a comprehensive plan to lessen the possibility or severity of injury while cycling.

    Of course, as you say, wearing a bicycle helmet while walking might actually help prevent harm there. Doubt you'll find many takers, though Probably more realistic to make sure your shoes are tied, avoid slippery patches or uneven ground, and pay attention to where you're walking. I've seen/known multiple people to suffer serious injury from falls merely because they, by their own admission, weren't paying attention to what they were doing.
    Last edited by Six-Shooter; 01-20-12 at 08:29 AM.

  9. #1134
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    Quote Originally Posted by Six-Shooter View Post
    FWIW, some interesting info on bicycle helmet testing and limitations:

    US Consumer Product Safety Commission testing standards:

    http://www.bhsi.org/testing.htm

    See section 5. Not exactly zero speed.

    http://www.bhsi.org/limits.htm
    http://cyclehelmets.org/papers/c2023.pdf
    These claims have been thoroughly refuted in this thread. Among others, the one about what helmets can prevent, which is based on a paper that was flawed through-and-through. In spite of it being so flawed, it is used in every campaign I can think of. It's rather frustrating.

  10. #1135
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mconlonx View Post
    Funny part about this is that pretty much nobody posting in this thread would support a MHL. Wherever those go into effect, you'll find it's mainly non-riders pushing for and enacting them...
    well, maybe not in this thread, but in my province there were, and still are, plenty of cyclists who back the law.

    From my understanding, every province has had a push to pass helmet laws in Canada, and the only ones to have them passed are the ones where cycling advocacy organizations did not take an opposition stance to them. The ones that had laws either rejected outright, or amended to include children only, had organized cycling advocacy groups stand against the law.

    My province's cycling advocacy organization held a neutral position and without opposition, the very arguments that are argued here in this thread convinced politicians t pass a helmet law
    "My two favourite things in life are libraries and bicycles. They both move people forward without wasting anything" -Peter Golkin
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  11. #1136
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Six-Shooter View Post
    ... Doubt you'll find many takers, though
    That's because people have their own sense of what their personal risk is while doing those things and feel a helmet isn't required, just as some cyclists do

    Probably more realistic to make sure your shoes are tied, avoid slippery patches or uneven ground, and pay attention to where you're walking. I've seen/known multiple people to suffer serious injury from falls merely because they, by their own admission, weren't paying attention to what they were doing.
    and the same things apply when on a bike. Make sure the bike is in good condition, avoid slippery patches, and pay attention when you're riding.

    I've also seen/known multiple cyclists suffer serious injury from falls merely because they, by their own admission, weren't paying attention to what they were doing.
    "My two favourite things in life are libraries and bicycles. They both move people forward without wasting anything" -Peter Golkin
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  12. #1137
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    Quote Originally Posted by closetbiker View Post
    and the same things apply when on a bike. Make sure the bike is in good condition, avoid slippery patches, and pay attention when you're riding.
    Precisely, just as I said in an earlier post, there are a host of attitudes and precautions one can employ. If someone is riding in traffic while daydreaming and listening to an ipod, or riding at night with no lights or reflectors across a busy highway, they're dramatically multiplying their risk through foolish behavior, helmet or no.

    Btw, back to an earlier point about exaggerated claims for what helmets can do, mine, of US manufacture, has prominent warning labels telling you what type of cycling it is not for and states in bold, "No helmet can protect against all possible impacts and serious injury or death can occur." If someone is claiming that bike helmets are magical shields against all injury, they're probably not getting that info from the helmets themselves.

  13. #1138
    Nobody mconlonx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Six-Shooter View Post
    Btw, back to an earlier point about exaggerated claims for what helmets can do, mine, of US manufacture, has prominent warning labels telling you what type of cycling it is not for and states in bold, "No helmet can protect against all possible impacts and serious injury or death can occur." If someone is claiming that bike helmets are magical shields against all injury, they're probably not getting that info from the helmets themselves.
    Apprently, the misinformation is spread by organizations supported -- but not financially -- by helmet companies. Helmet makers are very clear about the limitations; consumers reading safety notices that come with helmets should be, too.
    I know next to nothing. I am frequently wrong.

  14. #1139
    Senior Member Drummerboy1975's Avatar
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    I honestly feel that a lot of people wear helmets simply because everyone else does and they don't like the looks they get while not wearing a helmet from those that are.

    Me an another guy I ride with never wear one and we get plenty of looks. And we ride with two other cyclist that do wear helmets. They don't care though. I guess because we are all co-workers.

    But me nor the other guy care what others think. We also don't have jersies or riding shorts or tights either. We wear t-shirts, goodies, tennis shoes and stocking caps. And we enjoy our 15-25 miles ride just as must as everyone else.

  15. #1140
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mconlonx View Post
    Apprently, the misinformation is spread by organizations supported -- but not financially -- by helmet companies. Helmet makers are very clear about the limitations; consumers reading safety notices that come with helmets should be, too.
    Bell Sports has had a long standing, public partnership with Safe Kids; an organization that supports and lobbies for, all ages mandatory bicycle helmet laws
    "My two favourite things in life are libraries and bicycles. They both move people forward without wasting anything" -Peter Golkin
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  16. #1141
    Nobody mconlonx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Six-Shooter View Post
    Again, though, I see no evidence here of anyone actually discussing real laws and how to repeal them.
    +1
    I know next to nothing. I am frequently wrong.

  17. #1142
    Nobody mconlonx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by closetbiker View Post
    Bell Sports has had a long standing, public partnership with Safe Kids; an organization that supports and lobbies for, all ages mandatory bicycle helmet laws
    How so? Does Bell contribute money to Safe Kids? Merch? Allow their logo to be used?
    I know next to nothing. I am frequently wrong.

  18. #1143
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Six-Shooter View Post
    ... I see no evidence here of anyone actually discussing real laws and how to repeal them.
    It's a good idea to discuss efforts to pass laws because they are still attempted to be passed and once they are, it's much harder to repeal, than it is to prevent them from being passed
    "My two favourite things in life are libraries and bicycles. They both move people forward without wasting anything" -Peter Golkin
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  19. #1144
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mconlonx View Post
    How so? Does Bell contribute money to Safe Kids? Merch? Allow their logo to be used?
    Not certain as to direct monetary contributions, but there certainly is indirect monetary contributions as well as mechandise provided and the Bell logo displayed, but even without direct involvement, it's obvious that Bell stands to gain significantly from mandatory laws, no?
    Last edited by closetbiker; 01-20-12 at 11:45 AM.
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  20. #1145
    Nobody mconlonx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by closetbiker View Post
    Not certain as to direct monetary contributions, but there certainly is indirect monetary contributions as well as mechandise provided and the Bell logo displayed, but even without direct involvement, it's obvious that Bell stands to gain significantly from mandatory laws, no?
    Maybe not if it decreases ridership, like you claim, no? Perhaps Bell would stand to gain more if there were no MHL and ridership was up more than it would be with MHL, like y'all claim, no?
    I know next to nothing. I am frequently wrong.

  21. #1146
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mconlonx View Post
    Maybe not if it decreases ridership, like you claim, no? Perhaps Bell would stand to gain more if there were no MHL and ridership was up more than it would be with MHL, like y'all claim, no?
    Oddly enough a comparison with Portland, Oregon shows just that. They have a far higher usage rate than we do, even though we have a law and they don't.

    Sometimes, people shoot themselves in the foot. I for one, don't think I would have done the research I have, if I wasn't subjected to a law.
    Last edited by closetbiker; 01-20-12 at 01:14 PM.
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  22. #1147
    Nobody mconlonx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by closetbiker View Post
    Oddly enough a comparison with Portland, Oregon shows just that. They have a far higher usage rate than we do, even though we have a law and they don't.

    Sometimes, people shoot themselves in the foot. I for one, don't think I would have done the research I have, if I wasn't subjected to a law.
    So... have you approached Bell about this...?
    I know next to nothing. I am frequently wrong.

  23. #1148
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mconlonx View Post
    So... have you approached Bell about this...?
    Maybe they should have thought about what happens when over excited zealots start "spreading the news!"

    Sometimes, a soft sell works better than the hard sell
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  24. #1149
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    I recently took up recreational cycling again after 10-15 years of not riding. My longest ride was maybe a couple times to the beach and back, maybe 30 miles RT. Regarding helmets... I used to road race motorcycles (retired in 1980) and have crashed street and racing motorcycles over 30 times, 4-5 over 100mph. Once while testing a turbocharged 1000cc bike @ 125mph a car turned left in front of me and while I slowed it way down, when I hit the car, I literally flew over the car with my first contact point being my upper back as I somersaulted over the car. I've been hit by cars, I've high sided, slid out, I've hit walls but I was very lucky and I never had a broken bone or stitch... Only once did my helmet get damaged in a crash, but it was ground down from the high speed sliding over 100mph+. The point...

    I believe in wearing a bike helmet when I feel I'm at a higher than average risk (beyond my control) when I will be riding on streets that are not bike friendly or late hours when there might be above average drunk drivers on the road here in Hollywood and Los Angeles. Otherwise, if I'm just going a couple miles to the market or on an errand, I don't feel the need to wear my helmet. I will almost always wear my gloves, however. The body is a very fragile thing... my fellow retired racers... a couple are quadrapeligic, many including myself, have lots of aches and pains from crashes 30+ years ago. Several of my peers did have their helmets get impacted and they definitely are still amongst the living because of their helmets.

    There's a lot of idiots and teens that don't ride responsibly and should always wear a helmet... but I'd never support a MHL... It's their own neck (or head) and let the law of the jungle apply. Let everyone choose their own level of self protection/preservation.

  25. #1150
    Senior Member rydabent's Avatar
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    I would place myself in the middle of this discussion. I fully believe in and support wearing a helmet when cycling. However I DO NOT support a law requiring helmet use.

    BTW all the blather about wearing a helmet while engaged in other activities do not apply here as this a cycling forum.

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