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Health Matters

Getting Ready for Bike Season

April 29th, 2014

Submitted by Habitual Sports

With bike season just around the corner, many parents are getting outside with their kids and biking, rollerblading, or long boarding.  What many parents don’t realize is that head injuries are the leading cause of injury and death to kids on wheels.  Parents should invest in a helmet to keep their child safe.  How to pick the right helmet is easy.

First of all, get the right kind of helmet.  A bike helmet is good for biking, in-line skating and scooters.  Skateboarders need a special helmet that covers more of the back of their head.

Second, make sure your helmet meets safety standards.  Bike helmets are designed for a single impact so it is very important to replace a helmet after a crash – including helmets that are thrown on the ground or across the garage!  Bike helmets have an expiry date as the foam/shock absorber will start to break down over time.

Third, make sure the helmet fits your child’s head correctly.  Try it on your child before you buy it and remember the 2-V-1 rule:

  • The helmet should cover the top of the forehead and rest about 2 fingers width above the eyebrows

  • The side straps should fit snugly around your child’s ears in a “V” shape.

  • When the chin strap is buckled it should be tightened so only 1 finger fits between the strap and your child’s chin.

Fourth, don’t do anything to compromise your child’s helmet

  • Do not let your child wear anything under the helmet that compromises the fit such as a hat, high ponytail, or headphones.

  • Do not allow your child to place stickers on their helmet as this affects two things:

    • The stickers can prevent the helmet from sliding upon impact, increasing the likelihood of injury

    • The stickers can break down the helmet as well as hide damage

So make bike safety a regular part of your family’s active lifestyle and become habitually healthy.

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Tags: Biking, Safety

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