|Zombies. So hot right now.|
My trainer was/is on the USEA safety committee and she's big on helmets. I'm a fan of that. Some of the basic guidelines that are drilled into us are as follows:
1) The foam in helmets works by collapsing to spread impact around and prevent a brutal blow to the head. This means that a helmet is good for two years or one fall, whichever comes first. Dropping a helmet more than three feet onto a hard surface or leaving it in a hot car will also ruin the foam and leave you unprotected.
|So many things to hit my head on|
Those are good guidelines to start with. My helmet has reached the two year mark and I've started looking around at my options. I was tempted by the sparkly and obscenely expensive options that are showing up, but my brain is more important to me than any fashion sense. Instead, I read this article and this follow up. Both are addressing the climbing rates of traumatic brain injuries and the helmet technology that is developing to address it.
|Kind of hate how it looks, but love my brain more|
So far, the only equestrian helmet I've found that incorporates the available technology is the Devonaire Matrix Helmet, available here for $99.95. I'm definitely going to be looking into this and trying one on in the very near future. I know I'm not the only (or the best) science nut in the blogosphere. Who else has information to share?
That seems to be on the inexpensive end for a high-tech helmet... just goes to make you wonder what you're actually paying for with all the higher priced models.ReplyDelete
Bahaha! ZOMBIE COURAGE! Love it! :)ReplyDelete
I have to put in a plug for thick & heavy haired riders (Anyone else's head weigh at least 10lbs more when your hair is wet? No, just me? Omg.) to wear their hair out of their helmet. Realizing that I can comfortably stick my pony tail through the spot at the back of my helmet for schooling was a serious breakthrough for me. It sounds silly, but it really helps my helmet fit right. Trying to cram a thick ponytail under the bottom of the helmet would just prop my helmet forward onto my forehead. Not good. Threading my the ponytail through the back, or braiding my hair so it's flatter are really the only options I have if I want to keep proper helmet fit (which I do!).
Given, I ride dressage so this is acceptable, and I can ride with my hair in a fancy sparkly bun for shows. I'm sorry hunter riders. Looks like ya'll will just have to rock the pixie cut. ;)
I've heard 4-5 years is the standard replacement time. Is it really 2? Life is getting more expensive ...
I agree, helmets are very import and I never go a ride without putting one on my head. I think fit is more important then look too!ReplyDelete
I know that Tracy at Fly On Over is doing some helmet shopping too! Maybe you guys can coordinate your efforts :)ReplyDelete
I was so sad last summer when I had to throw out my practically brand new helmet after my fall but I also happen to like my brain the way it is, I mean it could be sharper but I'll take it. ;)ReplyDelete
My schooling helmet is also reaching the end of it's days so I too will be searching for a new helmet here soon. With the current guidelines on when to replace a helmet it is hard to imagine paying some of those high end price tags. I guess I just have better ways to spend my money!
oh man - that helmet is fugtastic. BUT - I'd rather have my brain than not! How did you find out about the qualifications of the helmet as compared to others?ReplyDelete
I'm not going to say it is the prettiest helmet in the world. I do like the science behind it and the theory of how it works makes sense. Did they really have to call it "Conehead technology" though? I keep getting a picture of a person eating a roll of toilet paper while wearing it (I'm hoping someone else has seen that movie so that I'm not the only one this makes sense to). I saw a picture of a girl wearing it on a site and it does actually look better on. What matters is that you are safe and comfortable in it.ReplyDelete
Yeeeeeah, that name for the tech strikes me as really unfortunate.Delete
I just replaced my helmet the other day, and it sure seemed like all the options had the exact same safety rating on the tags and the price differences came from aesthetics and brand. Would be great if ASTM or whomever had clear ways to articulate whether some helmets are indeed safer than others. Currently their different numbering is just for different types/activities (horse vs biking vs skii, etc)ReplyDelete
Ugly for sure. My friend sharpie could get rid of the white. I have previously read both articles. Big helmet advocate coming from motorsports. With the Matrix, I think the neck extension which looks like foam would be EXTREMELY annoying touching my sweaty neck and would hit the collar of EVERY riding shirt I own since they all have a standup or fold over collar. Gives me shivers just thinking about it. And how wearable is that in jump position with eyes up? It would just cram in there worse, or make the helmet move on your head, I'm thinking. Def a try it on AND test ride it kind of design. I'm all for saving the brain, but it has to be wearable or it can't do the job. I wear a CO because it fits my oval head, so lucky for the fashionista in me, I don't have to compromise.ReplyDelete
I ignored the two year/one fall rule for a long time, but last year, I fell off wearing my 4 year/3 fall helmet and got a concussion. Needless to say, I am now a big stickler on that rule!ReplyDelete
That helmet is definitely not a looker, but I like how it covers the back of your head/upper neck, a very vulnerable area that is often neglected. I like my Tipperary helmet because it has that. It makes putting your hair under your helmet difficult, though...
I am also about to replace a pretty Charles Owen that has reached expiration, and I am also looking at fugly-but-safe new options. I have heard that if you like the Matrix but think it is ugly, hold out, because they have a less-fugly-same-technology version called the Prism coming out any second now. I'm doing that - and probably also waiting until the discounts drop on World Helmet Awareness Day in June. But I am with you, going with brain protection over fashion this time - even if I still think my CO Wellington Pro is the bomb.ReplyDelete
Cant wait for the Prism! Trying to figure out how to pre-order it...Delete
Yes, that! That's what it's called!!Delete
Zombie pony... Yes... Seriously... Yes.ReplyDelete
I have never heard of the two year helmet rule... only five years. Two years seems a little much; I have to wonder how much of the expiration date is scientific and how much is manufacturers wanting to sell more helmets. If there are any actual studies, please point them my way!ReplyDelete
Helmet advocate here for sure!!ReplyDelete
I didn't know about the two year rule either, that seems like a quick turn around time without any falls. I'd be interested to see the studies for that too :)
Just checked the riders4helmets website. Five years of use or a fall seems to be the general recommendation by manufacturers.ReplyDelete
I love helmets. There- I said it. If I have to wear one every time I ride for 5 years (knock on wood- no falls) then I would like it to look nice on my head and feel happy wearing it! I've seen Helmet threads on COTH quite a bit lately with a ton of people saying "who cares about how I look as long as my head is protected?" I guess with all the helmets offering almost the same level of protection (with the exception of the version mentioned above), then I may spend a little more to get a CO that's a little more common in the Hunter rings since it's a piece of equipment I wear every time I ride. Is that weird? Am I alone in wanting my daily headgear to be stylish as well as safe?ReplyDelete
That might be a little off topic.
My call out from the first article is their note that people seem to be enjoying recreational activities in a more extreme way and the safety technology has not caught up yet. I think almost the opposite is true in the equestrian world. The fall has remained the same - but now rather than a helmet without a strap or no helmet at all- for the most part- riders are wearing an ASTM/SEI helmets so in theory we should be in better shape that other extreme sports.
Just a few random thoughts at the end of a long day. I hope CO starts using Conehead technology :)
Oh man, I am such a helmet person. I can't even remember the last time I got on a horse without a helmet. I'm guessing it's happened, but I can't think of a specific instance.ReplyDelete
That helmet is not cute, but as my mom always says, a helmet is cuter than a halo brace. If you try it, let us know how you like it.
The team "Conehead technology" just cracks me up. But yes, helmets are very important. I never ride without one. I mean, I was bucked off four times last year so how could I not.... ;-)ReplyDelete
Always replace after a fall. CO and some others offer discounts on new ones after a fall - always helps the sting.ReplyDelete
The MIPS technology was supposedly utilized for a while by Back on Track, but the helmet was only available in Sweden. And now it's apparently not even available there anymore. :-/ReplyDelete
I would really prefer the latest safety technology to "ermagerd, you can now customize and get a purple helmet with turquoise rhinestones!" Pretty sure fashion will be the least of my worries if I get a TBI.
That said, the Matrix is kinda funky and I am eagerly awaiting the Prism (which is currently not available, but be sure to let your retailers of choice know you are interested in purchasing one so they will pre-order!).
I can't ride without a helmet, that's for sure. The one you showed is quite interesting if also a bit ugly! HOWEVER, I am all for better technology. Mine is approaching the need to replace stage as well.ReplyDelete