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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:07 pm 
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There is also some suggestion that helmet wearers (where there is no lawful compulsion) tend to be more serious or dedicated cyclists and as an average cover a higher mileage than their naked headed counterparts.

And that's the problem - there has been no long running large scale study, only an analysis of statistics or reviews of multiple previous studies. The results are at best ambiguous and leave enough latitude to support either stance dependent on how selectively the conclusions are examined and quoted.

All this talk of angular momentum is just a distraction. There is no evidence to suggest that a) while such injuries are often recorded that they are a statistically significant cause of death in such collisions, and b) that the typical modern cycle lid is any worse than a naked human skull at avoiding such injuries.

So at best they might prevent an injury. At worst there is no statistically significant chance of increased injury through wearing one.

So the most one theoretically has to lose by wearing one is £30 to £150. A small chance is better than no chance - how many of us doggedly do the lottery each week for much smallest odds? I've spent more than that on a chainset and didn't blink.


Last edited by Chopper1192 on Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:12 pm 
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I wear a helmet because I believe it improves the chances of surviving a crash with your head in better nick than without one. And like xerxes I wear mitts and 'sports' glasses. The mitts protect your hands, have gel inserts which are comfy and the glasses keep the bits of grit and bugs out of your eyes.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:37 pm 
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FluffyChicken wrote:
Graham, there is a third missing interpretation.
Cyclists accidents are not getting reported as they are protecting the head against injury up until a point, not dissimilar to the second point but another way of looking at it. It's taking more to cause that injury that is being reported.


If less injuries were being reported because of helmet use then the head injury numbers should drop. The fact that they remain roughly the same would require that the diminishing number of non helmet users to dramatically increase their number of head injuries at the same time.

FluffyChicken wrote:
(possibly related to point one I don't feel it is, or there are more people riding in more dangerous places i.e. more people just riding on the roads which are getting more dangerous (more cars, increased public transport, cars parked on roads and pavements, cars are larger taking up more room) in general causing the chances of going beyond a helmet capabilities.
It does not mean a helmet is not working and reducing severity or not saving lives.
It also depends how you phrase it....

The number head injury in most areas of life is slowly reducing and has been doing so for decades. This does not correlate with helmet use, and pedestrians and car users do not wear helmets anyway. This ongoing reduction is probably due to hundreds of minor health and safety improvements. Car design, street design, driver awareness, better lighting, etc, etc.

FluffyChicken wrote:
It would be interesting to have some more recent data on the the last graphs, 15 years have past since to see if the trend has just stabilized and also to see what type of accident or if other influences like speed limits, car rules, location are involved. Always the problem with small data sets (the first of the three shows nothing really)
I hope you get my point in my jumble of words :)


This data must be somewhere? And It would provide many answers.
In particular, data on the ratio of rotational versus linear momentum brain injuries would be conclusive in telling us how effective current helmet designs are.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:48 pm 
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But you only get % of helmet users from the reported cases ?

The dwindling numbers of non helmet users having accidents could have rapidly increased, why couldn't it ?
The roads are rapidly more dangerous than when I were a lad, which is when the stats seem to start.

The interesting stats would come if you banned the use of helmets.


There is a correlation that increased helmet use shows a decrease in injury (graph goes up and graph goes down and see at the moment some couple of years later to level of). The population could be coincidental. For a start there are no errors ranges given for the graph and correlation factors ;)
In fact they are quite horrible graphs to try to read.

Also it only shows one specific aspect, not the lesser protection it is given, it is biasing the reason for having/not having a helmet. Severe Brain damage is not the be all and end all of what a helmet is protecting against.

I'm not debating helmet designs, I'm debating the thread title.
The helmets are there to reduce the chances and severity of minor injuries all the way up to fatality. Not to Remove it.
There will always be better designs as technology and understanding advances the full range down and still be comfortable for the user.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 9:11 pm 
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Quote:
There will always be better designs as technology and understanding advances the full range down and still be comfortable for the user.


No helmets and padded cars, that's the solution. A foot of padding all around cars will be far more effective than a polystyrene hat and will also protect pedestrians. In addition I won't have to overheat and look like a pillock wearing one. Padded vehicles will look awful, so perhaps people will stop buying them as status symbols and driving like they've got something to prove.

I'm struggling to think of a downside to this idea. :P


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 9:58 pm 
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Can't believe this is still going, but as usual some occasional relevant good points. Being a member of the "anti-helmet wearing" camp as it is now branded for an easy "us and them" I'll mention:
- I don't believe I'm invincible or immune to injury. That is just dreamland silly with or without a helmet right?
- I have serious doubts about the effectiveness of helmets and consider the early stats was nothing but utter bullshit for marketing and to sell a product. I would prefer to make an informed decision rather than being gullible or following fashion...I suppose I'm not unique right?

I've worn the sausage and string style ones and the early polystyrene potty in my early racing days, and admittedly not checked out modern ones but I presume they are better - although reading some of this I wonder now and would guess the LBS would sell me a helmet based on it's "popularity" rating rather then anything else. Here is the point now which I think most people in the so called "anti-helmet" wearing camp believe - there utility for the type and location of riding they do is considered so low they are just not simply worth bothering with. Utility is not the same as all the techy arguments we've had about effectiveness in the event of X, Y or Z or if the head rolls etc. I for one simply believe the cycling I do is not dangerous and go out of my way making it as least hazardous as possible (avoiding cars, slowing down, and being generally risk averse) - PPE goes as far as gloves and eye-wear. I can't imagine anyone would descend down a rock garden without a helmet; even those in the "anti-helmet" camp.

Hell, it seems I had more chance being hit by an asteroid a while back on my rides or getting caught up in a spontaneous flash riot in a northerly suburb than falling on my head - yes, that's how I see it. In this debate, the "helmet wearing camp" believe cycling is dangerous; either by the nature of their own riding or possible external events. Fair enough then, it's not for me to judge their individual circumstances and likewise the other way around.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 10:10 pm 
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Is the padding dual compound foam and in dayglo colour. If so I'm in.
Can we put it around lamppost and signposts to as they seem to like putting them at someplace in the cycle paths. It'll also help txting pedestrians. (and it'll bring both stats down)


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 10:20 pm 
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I sometimes wonder what planet some people live on? We certainly seem not to speak the same language!

Helmet wearers don't do so because they think cycling is dangerous, more because they are aware of their own mortality; I used to ride horses in my formative years and came a right purler on several occasions without suffering much in the way of hurt. It became a standing joke that it was because I always landed on my (riding hat shod) head; once completely inverted after being thrown at a particularly solid fence! When I think about the way I used to fearlessly thunder cross country on horses some adults wouldn't get on it almost seems like another persons life; I suppose it was far more easy for me to accept the practicality of a cycle helmet than most in this respect, especially having gone from horses to motorbikes, to jumping out of otherwise perfectly good aircraft!

The thing that gets my goat on this thread is that despite the very recent photographic evidence, some are still maintaining 'Your helmet made no difference to the outcome...

...oh b*ll*cks didn't it!

I'm with Chopper on 'compulsion' but if anyone doubts the veracity of a cycling helmet then they're welcome to come round here and have me take a swipe at their skull with a hammer; and you can wear a helmet for the first swing! :wink:


Last edited by We_are_Stevo on Tue Jul 23, 2013 11:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 10:45 pm 
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Im a helmet wearer, but not because i think cycling is dangerous.

Its because hitting my head on solid objects is dangerous.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23, 2013 10:46 pm 
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Quote:
I'm with Chopper on 'compulsion' but if anyone doubts the veracity of a cycling helmet then they're welcome to come round here and have me take a swipe at their skull with a hammer; wearing a helmet for the first swing!


I'm still better off not wearing a helmet and not coming round there, than I am coming around with a helmet. I refer you back to the comment I made several pages ago about some research showing that drivers give more room to unhelmeted riders and my comparison with wearing a helmet being akin to soldiers wearing a hi-vis bullet proof vests, whereby although they may offer some protection, they also increase their chance of being shot at in the first place.

Left to my own devices, I don't fall off much, and when I have, I haven't hit my head. My biggest risk of head injury is from being hit by a vehicle, not from sliding off because I've overcooked it on a corner, or slid on some gravel on the trail. Therefore, I'll take the extra space on the road over the dubious protection a polystyrene hat offers against a tonne or more of fast moving vehicle.

If I were doing fast, technical, downhill/stunt type riding, which I don't, I might wear a helmet for it, but on the road, I am extremely sceptical about their efficacy and think that they may even be counter productive.


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