Can Helmets Cause More Problems?

bike crash

Here’s more to the age old argument of helmets….

There is a good deal of circumstantial evidence that helmeted cyclists are more likely to crash, and data from one study [4] suggests that those wearing a helmet are more than 7 times likely to hit their heads if they do.

Many falls result in arm and shoulder impacts that keep an unhelmeted head just clear of the ground. A helmeted head, being twice as big and a little heavier, is more likely to hit something.

What gets me, helmets now a days aren’t very heavy at all….and they aren’t as big as they used to be back in the 80’s and 90’s…


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0 thoughts on “Can Helmets Cause More Problems?”

  1. Jay says:

    I think a good dose of intuition is the prescription here. The numbers resulting from studies and statistics can be jerked around to say just about whatever you want. To me it is real simple, if I fall off a bike (or get knowcked off by a car) I like my chances of not becoming a vegetable (or worse) by having a helmet than not having a helmet.

  2. RL Policar says:

    I’m with you on this Jay. Better safe than sorry.

  3. Willie says:

    RL, (what do the initials stand for?)

    I just started ride my bike for health reasons, and lets face it it’s fun. It reminds me of a time with life was so much simpler than today. Back in the good old days we never wore a helmet I have the bumps on my head to prove it. I’m having a hard time finding a helmet that fits comfortably. I have noticed that you have a slightly lopside head and was wondering what kind of helmet you use. If your helmet works for you it might fit on my egg shaped head.

  4. Nick says:

    This issue is extremely complicated. I don’t buy the argument that one rider wearing a helmet is individually more likely to get into an accident. That’s nonsense. What I do buy, and take very seriously, is the impact helmet laws and attitudes towards biking affect bike safety.

    Here’s my logic:
    – Many people do not like wearing helmets.
    – If a helmet is required by law, less people will bike.
    – If people believe that biking is dangerous and necessitates a helmet, less people will bike.
    – The best way to make biking safer is to have more people on bikes:
    more people on bikes means more awareness in legislators, city planners, and especially drivers.

    Copenhagen is a great example. High numbers of riders, low percentages of bike injuries and deaths – yet very few riders wear helmets. The reason biking is safer there is because the city has an honest-to-goodness bike traffic system, not just two white lines on the side of a street. Bikes come first, cars second.

    This is why I am fundamentally against helmet laws for adults, and against discouraging riding without a helmet. A helmet may reduce your individual risk of a head injury, but helmets do not make cycling safer, and helmet laws do more harm than good.

  5. Chris says:

    I wear a helmet and always will. I believe drivers behave better when they realize the person on the bicycle isn’t some idiot kid, and wearing a helmet makes me look more responsible. I struggle to believe that the drivers are the enemy; after all, I have a car, too. Drivers are bad, but so are many of the cyclists. If I can do anything to make the drivers realize that they can trust me when I’m on my bike, I will.

  6. Moe says:

    How do distinguish a bike commuter that chooses to ride to work VS a commuter that has to ride to work? The helmet, of course!

    I wear a helmet 100% of the time while commuting. I can say that 90% of the other riders that I encounter on my way to work are helmet-less, ride in the sidewalk and ride the opposite way.

    I’m not willing to find out what would happen if I land on my noggin’ after a crash without a helmet.

  7. Charles says:

    I’ve seen a helmet cause an accident. Someone was riding with a loose fitting helmet that slipped off the back of his head. The chin strap kept the helmet from falling away and acted as an air scoop, fluttering in the wind. The guy fought it for a few seconds before he fell. Ironically he didn’t his head. But his palms and elbows were scrapped pretty bad.

  8. Nick says:

    well, yes, a loose-fitting helmet can cause an accident. A loose fitting shoe can also cause an accident, but I still wear shoes when I ride.

  9. Charles says:

    Good point about the shoes. People wear shoes when riding a bicycle with out any prompting or mandatory requirement at all. As soon as they start shoe laws, people will stop wearing shoes while riding.

  10. karate gear says:

    karate gear…

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