Do we really need to wear helmets?

Inland paddling
Oli Sharp
Posts: 3
Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2008 5:39 am

Do we really need to wear helmets?

Post by Oli Sharp » Sat Dec 06, 2008 5:58 am

Hi there guys,

I have been kayaking for about 3 years now and I have NEVER hit my head. So about 6 months ago I stopped wearing my helmet. I found it may have even improved my paddling as my spacial awareness seems better on the water.

I've been in Nepal paddling some of the rivers round Pokhara like the Modi khola and bumped into some UK boaters who kicked up a fuss about my choice, one of them even refused to go paddling with me! He was a bit obnoxious, but it got me thinking...

Is this what the normal reaction would be in the UK?

I personally don't see the problem with it.

Thoughts?

Oli

User avatar
Croft
Posts: 898
Joined: Tue Oct 10, 2006 9:54 am
Location: Valais, Switzerland

Post by Croft » Sat Dec 06, 2008 7:32 am

Maybe this is a wind-up? If so congratulations you got a bite.

Think you've just been lucky - most paddlers bang their helmeted heads every now and then - OK not often but once is enough.

Do you expect your paddling companions to risk their lives coming after you when you are knocked unconscious?

Glyn B
Posts: 410
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 12:29 pm

Post by Glyn B » Sat Dec 06, 2008 7:39 am

Yes

DaveWortley
Posts: 1299
Joined: Sat Jul 15, 2006 6:01 pm

Post by DaveWortley » Sat Dec 06, 2008 7:41 am

I destroyed a helmet, it saved my life, it was on a grade 3+ river, Don't be an idiot, head injuries are not worth the risk. You take a big hit without a helmet and it'll affect the lives of your loves ones and friends in a horrible way. They'll be looking after you for the rest of your life, people will have to give up jobs.

Not worth the risk.


Always wear a helmet. 'Nough Said.

k.shark
Posts: 230
Joined: Wed Jan 10, 2007 3:14 pm
Location: cumnock

Post by k.shark » Sat Dec 06, 2008 7:45 am

I wasn't even going to answer this but if you go around and ask lot's of paddler's to see there helmet's you will get answer or worse .if you decide to go for helmet your size will be deah kcid . (wise up)

George Mcmillan
Posts: 489
Joined: Mon Feb 12, 2007 9:42 am
Location: Ayrshire
Contact:

Post by George Mcmillan » Sat Dec 06, 2008 8:05 am

This is a wind up for sure.

Your a complete clown if you think you won't ever bash your head on a river.
I have evidence of a friend who bashed his head on the Orchy with a Rocker half cut on and he still got a load of stitches in his forehead.
Wise up!

I personally wouldn't be keen on paddling with anyone who is not wearing there HELMET.
Whats the worst that can happen?

Get Wet!

User avatar
buck197
Posts: 1439
Joined: Sun Oct 16, 2005 5:25 pm
Location: Plymouth
Been thanked: 1 time

Post by buck197 » Sat Dec 06, 2008 8:12 am

So would you wear a helmet on a motor bike if legally you didn't have to, some states in the US you don't have to? Do you swim, if not why wear a PFD?

I'll go with the wind up thought but I have seen people on the Dart without helmets and I wouldn't paddle with someone without.

Its an insurance policy for that bad day when you do crack your head on that rock a foot below the surface.
Brian Taylor
Paddle Pirates

John-Row
Posts: 306
Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2006 4:47 pm
Location: Penrith

Post by John-Row » Sat Dec 06, 2008 8:15 am

i'd suggest this was a wind up, but just in case the original poster is as daft as he sounds then i'll give my 2p worth. I've hit my head on rivers. Even flat rivers, (yes i'll admit to a practice roll where i thought it was deep enough but wasn't). That aside, don't you think we wear safety gear for the just in case scenario's? You'll be asking if we should wear ba's and if we need drain bungs next. Wise up or you'll lose paddling partners!!

User avatar
Lancs_lad
Posts: 1417
Joined: Fri Apr 21, 2006 8:41 pm
Location: Lancaster

Post by Lancs_lad » Sat Dec 06, 2008 8:28 am

Don't feed the TROLL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Maz
Posts: 31
Joined: Mon Jul 14, 2008 7:35 pm

Post by Maz » Sat Dec 06, 2008 10:11 am

How many times do motorbikers hit their heads?

furby
Posts: 719
Joined: Fri Jan 19, 2007 8:55 pm
Location: plymouth uni and UPSUCC

Post by furby » Sat Dec 06, 2008 10:18 am

Maz wrote:How many times do motorbikers hit their heads?
An extremly high likely hood of doing so when ever they might fall or be knocked off.

So if you are a good rider, not very often then, but the likly hood of doing serioius injury to yourself when you fall of with out a helmet on is almost certain!

cj
Posts: 405
Joined: Sat Sep 11, 2004 6:05 pm
Location: Weymouth, Dorset

Post by cj » Sat Dec 06, 2008 10:20 am

If you have ever spent some time with young people who have had head trauma, the result of which is very sad, you would not be asking this question. You can kiss you spacial awareness goodbye. enough said.

User avatar
naefearjustbeer
Posts: 1718
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2005 1:50 pm
Location: Caithness
Been thanked: 1 time
Contact:

Post by naefearjustbeer » Sat Dec 06, 2008 10:22 am

I have ridden my motorbike much more than I have kayaked and kayaked more than I have snowboarded. I have hit my head doing all 3 activities and each time the helmet saved me from severe injury. I have hit my head kayaking more often than the other 2 activities but to be honest the motorbike accident caused much more injury to the rest of me. I have also done a solo flight out of a car window at 90 mph and landed unscathed in someones vegetable patch and only suffered ripped clothes, my mate wasnt so lucky he broke his skull and landed up in a coma. So I guess you wear a helmet where you have to by law and where you are partaking in an activity that is likely to bang your head. And dont bother the rest of the time but sometimes shit happens and you bash your head in.

I wouldnt paddle on a river with someone who wasnt wearing a helmet.

Maz
Posts: 31
Joined: Mon Jul 14, 2008 7:35 pm

Post by Maz » Sat Dec 06, 2008 10:48 am

furby wrote:
Maz wrote:How many times do motorbikers hit their heads?
An extremly high likely hood of doing so when ever they might fall or be knocked off.

So if you are a good rider, not very often then, but the likly hood of doing serioius injury to yourself when you fall of with out a helmet on is almost certain!
Exactly my point - a high likelihood of serious injury, however rare it is that they fall off, but when have you ever seen a motorbike rider WITHOUT a helmet...?

User avatar
J Dub
Posts: 136
Joined: Sat Nov 15, 2008 6:57 pm
Location: Almost Sunny Somerset

Post by J Dub » Sat Dec 06, 2008 12:11 pm

Ok I ride a motorbike and I kayak, I wear a helmet for both, when it comes to the bike thing, not only the helmet thing, but the lets ride in a t-shirt drives me mad too. 30mph contact of skin on the road and within 4 inches the averasge thickness of skin is to bone and beyond.
Lucky for me so far I have notexperienced any need for the safty kit so say 'it saved me' SO FAR but in short it only takes once, one bang on the head and it could be lights out and fact of the matter sometimes it dont take much of a bang on the head.
Like others someone who is not wearing a helmet, sorry your on your own, as it just upsthe risk factor in the event of injury, which in turns ups the risk to others around you.
Come on a simple hemlet isall it takes, if it effects your paddling that much, deal with it.
But hey personal choice, yet if you do end up with brain damage from an impact, you dont have to live with it, your family does, all for the sake of £30 and wat is said to be 'better paddling'
This post must be a joke right!

simplemedlyn
Posts: 195
Joined: Sun Oct 09, 2005 3:32 pm
Location: south west

Post by simplemedlyn » Sat Dec 06, 2008 12:28 pm

If i didnt wear my helmet then i would have half of my head missing. they make them for a reason.

User avatar
capsized8
Posts: 536
Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2004 4:57 pm
Location: north wales

Post by capsized8 » Sat Dec 06, 2008 12:30 pm

Maz wrote:[ but when have you ever seen a motorbike rider WITHOUT a helmet...?
Hmm, depends on your age, there was the same moaning and groaning about the nanny state when they became compulsory as there was for seat belts.

Got to admit though, there was nothing like a fast blast on a big bike with no lid on in the summer.

In some respects there is too much cotton wool these days, I climb without helmet except when I,m on ice, on rivers I always wear a helmet, on the sea, that depends on the activity, rock hopping, yes, trip no

It is all about your own perception regarding risk, if you can't take the knocks, don't play the game! However consideration should always be to others that are with you. It used to be said that "climb alone die alone" the same applies to solo paddling.

More fatalities would certainly focus and sharpen perspectives.

On the other hand, it probably depends on how empty your head is - a little touch of Darwinism here
peace and good padlin.

User avatar
J Dub
Posts: 136
Joined: Sat Nov 15, 2008 6:57 pm
Location: Almost Sunny Somerset

Post by J Dub » Sat Dec 06, 2008 12:33 pm

On the other hand, it probably depends on how empty your head is - a little touch of Darwinism here
Says it all LoL thank you made me laugh

User avatar
chrisps
Posts: 304
Joined: Wed Apr 18, 2007 3:30 pm
Location: Near Hurley
Contact:

Post by chrisps » Sat Dec 06, 2008 12:34 pm

I think the fact that the poster only has 1 post says it all... its not a real post!

Just to add my 2 cents though... I cracked a Sweet Rocker on the Upper Tryweryn when it was only on an 8 release... accidents happen and I'm glad I landed upside down on my Rocker, not my head

User avatar
shanclan
Posts: 1026
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2008 12:57 pm
Location: Monmouth
Been thanked: 1 time
Contact:

Re: Do we really need to wear helmets?

Post by shanclan » Sat Dec 06, 2008 12:45 pm

Oli Sharp wrote:Hi there guys,

I have been kayaking for about 3 years now and I have NEVER hit my head. So about 6 months ago I stopped wearing my helmet. I found it may have even improved my paddling as my spacial awareness seems better on the water.

I've been in Nepal paddling some of the rivers round Pokhara like the Modi khola and bumped into some UK boaters who kicked up a fuss about my choice, one of them even refused to go paddling with me! He was a bit obnoxious, but it got me thinking...

Is this what the normal reaction would be in the UK?

I personally don't see the problem with it.

Thoughts?

Oli
There is no problem with you not wearing your helmet. It is a matter of personal choice. After all, as a species, we do need to maintain diversity and have a few more evolutionary cul-de-sacs. .....

User avatar
Fozz
Posts: 32
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2008 1:58 pm
Location: Scotland

Post by Fozz » Sat Dec 06, 2008 1:37 pm

I personaly have never been through the windscreen of my car...

Think i might stop wearing my seatbelt.

User avatar
hhzoombird
Posts: 464
Joined: Wed Jun 16, 2004 12:03 pm
Location: Manchester
Has thanked: 2 times
Contact:

Post by hhzoombird » Sat Dec 06, 2008 1:44 pm

Hi Oli, I just looked you up on an actuarial chart, and the good news is, you don't need to be wasting any money on a pension.

User avatar
capsized8
Posts: 536
Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2004 4:57 pm
Location: north wales

Post by capsized8 » Sat Dec 06, 2008 1:45 pm

Fozz wrote:I personaly have never been through the windscreen of my car...

Think I might stop wearing my seatbelt.
Don't forget your helmet!!!!
peace and good padlin.

Paul L
Posts: 407
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2007 8:57 pm
Location: Middlesbrough

Helmets

Post by Paul L » Sat Dec 06, 2008 2:47 pm

No Oli you definately don`t need to wear a helmet mostly there just for show ,you dont need one that is if your skull is like Homer Simpsons 3 inches thick all the way round to protect that raisin sized brain.Great question though got some good bites maybe you should take up fishing.
Lol

DaveWortley
Posts: 1299
Joined: Sat Jul 15, 2006 6:01 pm

Post by DaveWortley » Sat Dec 06, 2008 3:54 pm

Guess which bit of kit I realised I had left at home 30mins into my journey today?............ :(

User avatar
chrisps
Posts: 304
Joined: Wed Apr 18, 2007 3:30 pm
Location: Near Hurley
Contact:

Post by chrisps » Sat Dec 06, 2008 4:46 pm

Scumbag_Scout wrote:Guess which bit of kit I realised I had left at home 30mins into my journey today?............ :(
In future, just come along anyway - it would have only taken me 5/10 mins to nip home and grab you my spare!

User avatar
SwamP
Posts: 3101
Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2008 6:14 pm
Location: Edinburgh

Post by SwamP » Sat Dec 06, 2008 4:51 pm

Stop wearing a helmet.
Lets not try to understand each other. Thanks.

Dave Manby
Posts: 2010
Joined: Mon Dec 22, 2003 10:36 am
Location: Llangollen
Been thanked: 10 times
Contact:

Post by Dave Manby » Sat Dec 06, 2008 4:55 pm

Look at it this way,

If you wear a helmet when road biking should wear a helmet when driving a car; you are more likely to get a head injury driving than biking (per mile travelled). Bike helmets are mostly cosmetic, one-use abrasion prevention hats. I find it amazing that parents get paranoid when their kids go out without a helmet - but they all biked without helmets in their youth! The case for bike helmets is not proven.

If you paddle without a helmet after years of paddling with one you are much more circumspect and conservative in your paddling. I know - I've done this. This is a well known phenomenon know as the "cocoon effect". Motor bikers drive faster with a helmet than without in tests.

It is impossible to say if helmets prevent head injuries in kayaking because next to no one paddles without a helmet where they are likely to get an injury. (No one wears a helmet when paddling on a lake/flat water/ grade I where does it matter if you wear a helmet I would think that on grade 2 you might get a nasty graze without a helmet ......)

In my youth I always wore an Ace helmet and it prevented loads of small injuries because I kept hitting Slalom poles with my head; a reflection on my early slalom skills. However if I had hit a rock really hard it might have been different matter.

In the 80's the BCU did some research on this The road research agency refused to test the strength of ACE helmets because they were worried about the damage to their equipment! They acquiesced to testing a Protec which failed all the test they had for helmets - including safety helmets for site work. However the counter argument was that 95% of the teams at the 81 worlds at Bala wore ACE helmets and also no could produce ONE example of a head injury where the ACE helmet was inadequate; i.e. if another helmet had been worn then the injury would not have happened.

Helmets are great they keep my head warm but do not depend on them to protect your head should you hit a rock head on (literally) at the bottom of a 10m fall.

When you go surfing do you wear a helmet? Why most boarders don't wear helmets and the number of injuries to boarders heads are negligible.

Need I remind everyone of the "red helmet" story of Slime's.

User avatar
HAM
Posts: 198
Joined: Fri Dec 23, 2005 3:06 pm
Location: Inverness

Post by HAM » Sat Dec 06, 2008 5:24 pm

You are clearly an idiot, what on earth are you going to attach ur nose clip to!

Hugo

User avatar
chrisps
Posts: 304
Joined: Wed Apr 18, 2007 3:30 pm
Location: Near Hurley
Contact:

Post by chrisps » Sat Dec 06, 2008 5:33 pm

Dave Manby wrote: The case for bike helmets is not proven.
Sorry, but when I was younger I had a crash on a bike (idiot driver knocked me off) and I got severe concussion - if I hadnt been wearing a helmet I would have been far more seriously injured or worse. That was just a random day on a quiet road and completely out of the blue. I really dont see why anyone wouldnt wear a bike helmet. In a car you have airbags and head restraints etc to cushion the blow. You have nothing on a bike, so I really dont agree with that argument

As for kayaking, I refer to my earlier point.... accidents happen. If theres rocks in the river, why take the chance, regardless of grade (ok, flat water excluded)?

Post Reply

Return to “Whitewater and Touring”