Cycling is supposed to be a fun hobby for children, but it’s vital that they understand the importance of wearing a cycling helmet at all times. According to a report published in The Daily Telegraph, there are 90,000 on-road and 100,000 off-road accidents every year involving children, many requiring a trip to A&E or even a hospital stay. While kids might complain that wearing a helmet is ‘not cool’, doing so could prevent a head or brain injury should they come off their bike.
Helmets: The science behind them
It is thought that wearing a helmet can decrease the risk of a brain injury by around 75%. As they are learning to ride or do not have much experience on two wheels, children are more likely to come off their bikes than adults. Even low-speed impacts involving a head hitting the ground can cause concussion or a more severe brain injury, so wearing a helmet could cushion the impact and prevent some of the damage.
Children also tend to be involved in more on-road incidents, largely because they do not fully understand traffic rules or may be less stable on their bikes. Even when accompanied by an adult, the risk of being knocked off their bike is still there and needs to be taken seriously. If a child is involved in an accident, families can get cycling accident compensation and advice from a specialist firm such as Osbornes Law.
Choosing a helmet
Children’s helmets today come in a variety of designs, so whether they are interested in dinosaurs or Disney, you will be able to find one deemed ‘cool’ enough to be worn when out and about! Making sure you get the right fit is also important, but there are handy online guides such as this one from Halfords to help.
A cycling helmet for your child should be adjustable so that the fit is snug without being too tight. If a helmet is too large, then it will be less efficient at cushioning a blow should they fall or be knocked off their bike.
Cycling is a wonderful and liberating pastime for a child, but safety should always come first. Wearing a cycling helmet all the time can never fully eliminate risk, but it can lower the chances of them suffering a head or brain injury. However hard we may try to protect them, accidents will happen – a cycle helmet is the best way to mitigate that risk.