Please wear bike helmets
It’s gratifying to see families bicycling together. It’s a great activity, and it’s full of teachable opportunities for the kids.
However, it’s puzzling to see helmets on the children, but not on the parents. Protecting the children is admirable, but who’s going to do that when a parent has been disabled by a traumatic brain injury? What are the children learning from the example set by the parent(s)?
When our daughter was an inpatient at Craig Rehabilitation Hospital in Denver, we were shocked at how many people in the brain injury unit were there due to bicycle accidents. BMC Emergency Medicine listed 286,978 emergency room head injuries from bicycling for 2016, more than football (220,258), basketball (131,930), or soccer (98,710).
No one leaves home intending to crash, that’s why it’s called an accident, which is defined as: “(A)n unfortunate incident that happens unexpectedly and unintentionally, typically resulting in damage or injury.” All it takes is a quick glance at the kids to be sure they’re O.K. combined with an unseen rock, patch of gravel, loose dog, or an area of wet, slick, concrete, and a caring parent becomes a statistic.
Parents, please care enough about your children to wear helmets yourselves. Please also check whether the kids are wearing their helmets properly, to derive maximum protection. Excellent guidelines can be found by Googling: “How to wear a bicycle helmet properly.”
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