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Play It Safe!

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Ladybug Mom & Bumble Bee babyMother Nature is playing tricks with us this year by prolonging winter but, believe it or not, spring and summer are just around the corner! So it won’t be long before our kids are begging us to pump up the bike tires and search for their rollerblades, skateboards and scooters. Now it’s my turn to remind you to check the fit of their safety helmets as well and enforce the simple rule: NO helmet = NO bikes, tricycles, rollerblades, skateboards or scooters! In other words, NO helmet means NO riding toys! Why is it so important to play it safe? Ninety-one percent of bicyclists killed in 2009 reportedly were not wearing helmets. Furthermore helmet use has been estimated to reduce head injury risk by 85 percent. (Source: http://www.helmets.org/stats.htm) How do you determine if your child’s or your own safety helmet fits properly? Proper Fit of a HelmetGuidelines for a proper fit:
  • To protect the forehead, the helmet must sit squarely on the head with the front of the helmet set low, about 1 to 2 finger widths above the eyebrow.
  • Don’t tip the helmet back because it may fall off during a collision and leave the forehead unprotected.
  • Buckle the chinstrap securely at the throat and pull on the strap until it is snug against the throat; there should be no slack when the chinstrap is fastened.
  • A loose helmet does not provide proper protection. The helmet fits right when there is uniform pressure around the head from the padding and the skin on the forehead moves when the helmet is tilted.
  • The front and rear straps should form a "Y" just below and ahead of the ears.
It’s also important to replace the helmet if the shell becomes cracked or compromised in any way. Of course it goes without saying parents must set an example by always wearing their helmets when participating in the above sports because kids instinctively follow the “Monkey See, Monkey Do” example! Wishing all of you and your families a SAFE summer! Please help us spread the “Play It Safe” message by sharing this blog post with your friends.  

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2 comments

  • Just a note: a helmet should be replaced after 1 impact (with any surface, including falling off a closet shelf) or after 5 years, whichever comes first. A helmet may be damaged without any signs of damage and may not protect against injury in a subsequent crash. Also please note that helmets do not significantly reduce the incidence of concussion so after any crash, please monitor the person for 24-48 hours for any symptoms (there’s not much that can be done to treat concussion, but a trip to the doctor is still in order).

    Melissa on
  • Dear Melissa,
    So true! Perhaps a blog post on the issues you have raised is due. Would you like to write an article and be the next guest blogger on our blog site? I’d be happy to give you full credit for the post as well as an active link to your site.
    If interested, please email me at info@tail-wags.com so we can discuss length etc.
    Best regards,
    Karyn

    Karyn on

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