Bike helmets

Discussion in 'Childhood and Beyond (4+)' started by gina_leigh, May 12, 2013.

  1. gina_leigh

    gina_leigh Well-Known Member

    We've always made the kids wear helmets when riding their bikes. Always.

    But in the last few months they've enjoyed the new freedom of going down the street to play with the neighborhood kids. The neighborhood kids who do not wear helmets. Not one single one of them.

    So now they fight every single day about wearing helmets. It's so frustrating! And I know they've taken them off while playing. They get in trouble for it, but doesn't stop them all the time.

    I remind them it's to keep them safe, yada yada yada. In one ear and all that.

    Grr. Just venting!
  2. rrodman

    rrodman Well-Known Member

    Don't you hate it when other parents make it hard to enforce the rules?
  3. threebecamefive

    threebecamefive Well-Known Member

    That would be so frustrating! If you come up with the magical solution to manage this battle, please share!
  4. rissakaye

    rissakaye Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    We probably qualify as one of "those" parents who make it hard, but here's what we do.

    When the kids were first learning, helmets were mandantory.

    After about 2 to 3 years of riding, the rules are now that if the kids are in our driveway or in our cul-de-sac, they do not have to wear a helmet. We are at the end of the cul-de-sac and we don't have any teen-age drivers on the street. If we go for a bike ride through the neighborhood, they must wear the helmets.

    If we lived on a through street, or had a bunch of new drivers, I'd have different rules. That's the compromise we have. I personally can't stand the feel of a helmet and don't wear one.

    2 people like this.
  5. mama_dragon

    mama_dragon Well-Known Member

    I didn't wear a helmet until I bought my own bike in college and was riding to and from classes. That being said I was riding on a bike path as an adult with my husband. He stopped in front of me suddenly and I had to stop fast to keep from slamming into I had to stop fast. I went over the handle bars, slammed my head and broke my elbow. I was very lucky that I was wearing a helmet. Otherwise I would have had a major head injury. It took a split second. I had many years of experience riding. I am already the mean parent about helmets and I will continue to be. Luckily my two are small enough they don't go out of my eye sight yet. Dread the days when they can take off the helmet. Or other kids don't wear them so they don't want to.
    1 person likes this.
  6. moski

    moski Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    There are a lot of kids that don't wear them at our summer place. My kids do wear them despite the fact that they complain. I basically just tell them that it is a law and they have to wear them.
  7. Danibell

    Danibell Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    We're "those" parents too ;) We live on a farm. My kids ride on grass and gravel all the time. We don't enforce the helmet rule. However, if we were to go for a ride in town they'd have to wear helmets when riding on concrete or near roads. But around our place I'm not very concerned about it.
  8. KCMichigan

    KCMichigan Well-Known Member

    We enforce the helmet rule.

    I agree w/ PP is that it only takes a second. I worked with a kiddo that had a closed head injury from falling off a bike in what seemed like a minor incident. I also fell off my bike ( something got stuck in my spokes) going on a sidewalk when young and really got hurt....if I had hit my head, it would have been much worse.

    Our rules are if it has wheels, you HAVE to have a helmet. Same as cars.....we see kids without proper carseats and my kids ask why they have to sit in a booster. Sorry- we don't compromise on safety. We state that it falls under different houses have different rules. But also state that in our area it is illegal to not wear a helmet (it is).

    If our kids get on anything with wheels without a helmet, they lose said item for awhile. So far we have had complaints....but no actual not wearing.

    I would stand firm if you want them in helmets. Have them chat with the local EMS or firestation attendents if you want another grown up to reinforce it. (I know ours do frequent community chats to help make sure kids are wearing them).

    We live in an apartment with a lot of crazy drivers...there is no way my kids would not wear a helmet- even on a scooter.
  9. gina_leigh

    gina_leigh Well-Known Member

    One of my problems is that DH isn't as worried about it as I am. He enforces the rule bc I feel strongly about it.

    I just feel like its an easy way to keep their head safe. It's not like I'm making them wear knee pads or elbow pads too!

    I'm just glad I'm not the only mom who is strict with it. It just sucks that they are now aware of what other kids are doing.

    Pretty sure it's downhill from here! Lol
  10. ljcrochet

    ljcrochet Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    I make my girls wear helmets. Dani has 2 different helmets, a bike and a multi sport. Sydney only has a multi sportDH and I also wear helmets when riding a bike.
  11. miss_bossy18

    miss_bossy18 Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    My brother almost died from a double compound fracture to his skull from a bike accident when he was a child riding on the dirt roads at my Aunt & Uncle's sheep ranch in the middle of rural & rural. Bike helmets are and always will be non-negotiable. So far though we haven't had to argue about it.
  12. SuzyHolland

    SuzyHolland Well-Known Member

    In Holland most kids don't wear helmets.
    The last years more kids do. Mostly younger than 7/8
    We never did and we are so used to biking.
    I bike with 3 kids to school.

    Butt, we have bike paths almost everywere and drivers are used to bikes.
    Most of the time when I see a adult with a helmet...I asume it's a foreigner.
    That also goes for my Mom hahahahahah she wears a helmet due to brain surgery (her scull has some soft spots) and she is American
    The other day I saw an old man with the same helmet.

    Butt if there was an accident...well a helmet would help.
  13. rrodman

    rrodman Well-Known Member

    It's not just worries about cars. Any tumble from a bike can result in a head injury--even if you are on a bike path or in the country and all alone. I know a man who broke several ribs in an accident where a squirrel ran across a bike path in front of him. My dad swerved to miss a dog and broke his pelvis. It took him months to recover--he had to use a walker then a cane. I know another man who broke a hip sliding on some gravel and never fully recovered. All of them would have been much more seriously injured without a helmet. That said, I can only make rules for my kids.
    1 person likes this.
  14. summerfun

    summerfun Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    That is frustrating. My kids know they have to wear a helmet when riding a bike and that's the law and that's our rule....period. We have a lot of parents who don't have those "rules" around here as well and I just tell my kids that my responsibility is for my kids and I want them to be safe. And like other posters have mentioned it's not just cars you have to worry about it is any fall or tumble off a bike that can hurt a child. And my kids know that even if they are just riding their bike in our driveway they still have to wear a helmet. No helmet no riding of the bike!
  15. Nancy C

    Nancy C Well-Known Member

    Non-negotiable here! I have worked with lots of kids with seemingly minor accidents which left serious long term issues.
  16. 40+mom

    40+mom Well-Known Member

    Non negotiable here, too. No helmet = immediate loss of bike privileges for a week (first offense) and longer (for repeat offenders). We only had to resort to this one time.

    Our pedi even asked, at our last visit, if our kids always wore helmets when they biked.

    Some years back (pre kids), I had a church member out for a casual ride with her kid who had an accident, hit her head and, due to the head trauma, died. It made a huge impression on me and I've been very adamant about bike helmets (for me and our kids) since then.

    That said, there are some kids in our neighborhood that ride without helmets (but not many).

    Good luck with this!

  17. tinalb

    tinalb Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    It is the law here that you must wear a helmet when biking, so that makes it easier to enforce. But I still see people all the time without a helmet on and I also know numerous people who have gotten tickets for biking without a helmet.

    Helmets, without a doubt, save lives no matter where you are biking. I had to phone 911 just last summer for a grown man who was riding his bike, without a helmet, on the sidewalk. No traffic around at all but he hit the curb or a crack or something & went flying off his bike, face first onto the sidewalk. He was still unconscious when the fire department arrived & I left. I have no idea what kind of injuries he ended up with but he definitely lost some teeth, cut his face badly, and I am sure had at least a concussion. Even with a helmet, he would likely have injured his face, but he would likely not have hit his head hard enough to lose consciousness. He was dressed in biking clothes & had a nice bike so I am sure he wasn't inexperienced, and I have no doubt that he did not leave his house that morning figuring he would end up unconscious on the sidewalk. Accidents happen unexpectedly, heads should be protected.
  18. ljcrochet

    ljcrochet Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    I thought of this thread today while I was outside with my girls. They were reading a book on the driveway wi some kids on the block, some of the older kids were rollerblading. One of the boys took a big flop, fell on the ground. Probably would have gotten really hurt if he wasn't wearing his helmet. He was probably on the ground for 5 minutes. Luckily he was fine. Dani started to skate with them, and I had to tell the same boy to close his helmet. Had it. On the head but not closed.
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