As I traveled close behind my seven year old daughter today on a fun bike ride to the Hot Chocolate Sparrow, I watched as she curved to the left, dropped to the ground and her head (covered by her bike helmet), smashed on the pavement and literally bounced! It all seemed to happen in slow motion. I was terrified, at the same time as telling myself “she has a helmet on.” As I went to her and determined that she was basically ok, aside from a scraped and bruised knuckle and she herself being terrified that she must have hurt her head, I was filled with gratefulness and thanksgiving that, but for the helmet, my little girl would be laying there with a severe head injury.
So I am taking this opportunity to promote not just the helmet, and not just the helmet for children, but the proper fit for the helmet. I am probably not alone in saying that I have seen many children with “floppy” helmets, helmets dipped forward, helmets tipped way back, and rarely with children, but often with adults, NO HELMET AT ALL, sorry to say, myself included.
For some odd reason, before we left today I decided to put my own helmet on, AND I strapped a really goofy looking half-milk-crate onto my bike rack and said, “I can put the first aid kit in there!” Thank God I didn’t need my helmet and didn’t really need the first aid kit, but I HAD THEM!
This was a very good lesson for my daughter, and myself about helmets. While neither of my children have every questioned the need to wear their helmet, today my daughter and myself got an up close and personal lesson on the vital necessity of the helmet. I won’t soon forget the image and sound of her head (helmet) smashing on the pavement, nor will she forget the feel and sound of her head, in it’s little “helmet home,” smashing on the pavement.
Every time she complains about her sore hand I just start overflowing with gratefulness about the gift of the helmet and her hand feels better!
Here are a couple of links that might be helpful;
Please, make sure your children and yourself have a properly fitted bike helmet and that you wear it every time, as I now will!