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blair

Am I going to cycling hell?

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I was naughty yesterday, but justifiably. I made the pilgrimage into the dandenongs to pay homage to the mountain by doing the Crucifix loop. The 1-20 was chock full of riders, TT/tri bikes in particular (respect to the girls who were smashing it up there dragging 3 or four men up the hill!), devils elbow less so, especially after the left hander up churchill rd to one tree hill.

 

But we rode around to inverness rd, and by the time we were climbing that bugger it was getting quite warm. So warm, in fact, that I made the judgement call to take the helmet off and ride up inverness rd, which is a very quiet residential st, holding my helmet on the handlebars. I was very happy with this decision when it kicked up to 15% about half way up to sky high, and I put the helmet back on before I reached the main rd. It's a humbling feeling to be doing 194 bpm riding at 55 rpm out of the saddle in the granny gear (which is admittedly a 39/25 so not as small as the dandenongs really require), and knowing you have another 4 km to go before you reach the top of the climb.

 

I did not see a car on either the way down nor the way up (which is quite common for that particular stretch), nor was I riding over 20km/h and I consider myself to be a pretty skilful cyclist. I know it's against the law ride without a helmet, and if I had been issued with a fine I would be happy to pay it, but under the circumstances was it really such a bad thing?

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your head, your choice as far as i'm concerned

 

 

That's what i'm talking about, I weighed up the risks, which I thought were extremely minimal, and decided on a course of action which although not ideal, would not hurt anybody.

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Yep you are good.

A helmet really only helps protect you from hitting the road, I dare say you weren't going to hit the road at that speed unless you stuffed up a clip out.

If a car is going to hit you a helmet often wont do any good.

 

I think twice in all my cycling I have forgotten to put on my helmet, when riding home as soon as I realised , I noticed how good it felt....and a little naughty. The first time I even got to feel the wind in my hair (many, many years ago)

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On Saturday, I rode in a memorial ride for someone who died riding in the Dandenongs 6 years ago... they were hit by a car coming around a blind corner... they considered themself a skillful rider.... They did have a helmet on, but this may be why they survived a few days, rather than die on the spot.

 

Does taking a helmet off really make that much of a difference to cooling now days?? Not something I would do...

 

You simply don't know what is going to happen on any given ride. For example, I have another friend run into a downed power line on Saturday - he is in intentisive care, you couldn't have guessed this, so why would you reduce the possible chances of being ok if the unknown happens?

 

In other words; keep the helmet on!

Edited by Steno

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The first couple of years I did triathlon there were no helmet laws - so we just strutted around in those little cycling caps :shy:

 

When I was a bikie back in my wilder days there were no helmet laws - so we rode around with our sunnys on and our hair blowing back - we did some crazy things as well - managed to get away with them all - i must have been being saved for something :scared:

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On Saturday, I rode in a memorial ride for someone who died riding in the Dandenongs 6 years ago... they were hit by a car coming around a blind corner... they considered themself a skillful rider.... They did have a helmet on, but this may be why they survived a few days, rather than die on the spot.

 

Does taking a helmet off really make that much of a difference to cooling now days?? Not something I would do...

 

You simply don't know what is going to happen on any given ride. For example, I have another friend run into a downed power line on Saturday - he is in intentisive care, you couldn't have guessed this, so why would you reduce the possible chances of being ok if the unknown happens?

 

In other words; keep the helmet on!

 

I don't know if it actually made a difference, but it sure felt cooler. Might have just been a mental thing though. I didn't have enough water to pour some over my head and be assured of getting to the top with some fluid left, and I couldn't slow down because there really is just a limit as to how slow you can turn the pedals before you stop moving.

 

Was the poor guy who was electrocuted the written up in the paper - on his MTB? Read that, shit luck. I really hope he comes good - I guess sometimes there's nothing that can be done though and you are in fates hands.

 

My condolences to you and your friend's family.

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Only time I've riden sans helmet has been a couple of times in Byron the morning after the race when riding back to town to pickup my car. Same as you Blair, made a judgement call, lived to tell the tale, enjoyed the wind blowing through my hair. Oh yeah that 's right :smile1:

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I have been hit by a car once and also have come off my bike. Both times my helmet saved me from more injuries. I have also blown a couple of spokes riding up a hill doing 20 kph and just kept the bike up. Even great riders have accidents. Keeping cool vs potential concussion - your call, your family, our taxes.

 

Me, helmet always. I even tell people to wear one if I see them nude on the head.

 

FM

Edited by Flanman
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IMHO helmets hanging off hadlerbars are worse than those at home on the shelf - they have huge potential to complicate steering / distract attention at the worst possible moment.

Like AP we did not have to wear them in the beginning & they were hot & heavy to boot, modern helmets are light (yes you can almost forgwget it is there - especially if like me you wear a headsweat underneath for moisture managent/sun protection in summer /warmth in winter) and pretty cool to wear.

I tell my kids riding without one (like driving without a seatbelt) is like going out with out underwear (add own analogy for reasons here)). I do though dislike mandatory helmet laws and remember it is not the fine that hurts those with above average income it is the loss of points & permanent offence on one's driving record.

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Not sure the point of your topic Blair? But won't get any high 5s from me being an idiot

 

Wear your helmet, your head is soft compared to the Tarmac or a car. Don't care how skillful you think you are

 

All this topic needs is for you to brag how many watts you held and how many ppl you dropped going for the KOM without your helmet

 

PS 39/25 is small

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I tell my kids riding without one (like driving without a seatbelt) is like going out with out underwear

 

 

One of lifes great simple pleasures.

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nor was I riding over 20km/h

 

 

Go for it.

 

FFS, the amount of nanas on here acting as if you're doing some Red Bull stunt is unreal.

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Yeah....and I remember when we used to drink 4 or 5 middies after work and drive home without issues!

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Last time I rode without a helmet, I was confused as to why my head was colder than usual, I then turned around to get it (maybe 100m total).

I have got to the stage that if I am not wearing a helmet I get distracted due to the change...

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Go for it.

 

FFS, the amount of nanas on here acting as if you're doing some Red Bull stunt is unreal.

 

 

I can't see too many acting like that. Spend some time in the emergency clinic and see the fallout of people hitting their heads on night outs. Yes, riding it's not in the same vein as if you are drunk or king hit but the distance is the same although the speed is a lot faster on a bike. For the sake of a little heat on your head, is it worth it to you and your family, albeit the likelihood being less?

 

He asked the question, he got a lot of answers. Personnal responsiblity is the name of the game.

 

FM

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I can see the general consensus seems to be about 50/50.

 

tri_hard, my goal was to guage exactly how frowned upon not wearing a helmet is and under what circumstances. In Italy I would not hesitate to take my helmet off riding up a hill, and I wouldn't be alone.

 

I wouldn't do it on beach rd, nor on the 1-20, or any road where there is a measure of either cycle traffic or car traffic. But where the going got tough, on a very quiet road, I made a choice. I was wondering how how deep the furrows in the brows of others would go.

 

Out of interest there were two guys at the top of inverness rd who were deciding whether to go straight to olinda or head to sky high first when I made a brief stop to put my helmet back on, and they both said they wish they'd thought of it.

 

Flanman, I appreciate your input. I must admit that i wasn't thinking of who it would effect (fiancee, mates, family etc...) if I did come off or crash, only of not throwing up.

Edited by blair

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Go for it.

 

FFS, the amount of nanas on here acting as if you're doing some Red Bull stunt is unreal.

 

Somewhat related in terms of contemplating personal risk:

 

On Sunday my friend was pondering on facebook whether to go for a run in the storm.

I was the one being a nana replying that the risk of falling trees, powerlines, and cars sliding off the road put it in the "not a great idea" basket. However others (rightly) pointed out that the risks were still minimal and she should go for it (indeed those exact words).

In the end my friend had a great run. But some poor woman standing on a bike path elsewhere in Brisbane lost her child when a tree fell on them.

 

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I have to ask what use is putting a helmet on a head not smart enough to wear one :shy:

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Only in Australia will you go to hell. Most of the rest of teh world accepts that cycling carries the same kind of risk of HI as any other ADL.

No doubt I'll get abused as should know better, but on teh weekend, my ED is not full of cyclists, it's full of football players, none of whom made any attempt to evade teh collision which injured them.

That and little old ladies and other clumsy folk who slipped at home, or on a footpath etc.

 

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Which ED Ken Ho?

 

In Melbourne, Alfred and Sandringham are full of cyclists in the morning and angle grinder and electric saw users in the afternoon...

 

My understanding is that Blair almost has a frequent flyer card for hospitials and cycling accidents, despite his pretty skilful status

Edited by Steno
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No doubt I'll get abused as should know better, but on teh weekend, my ED is not full of cyclists, it's full of football players, none of whom made any attempt to evade teh collision which injured them.

 

 

Yeah all with life threatening injuries. :rolleyes:

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Yes, riding it's not in the same vein as if you are drunk or king hit but the distance is the same although the speed is a lot faster on a bike.

 

He stated he never exceeded 20km/h, he's going uphill (so as soon as he stops pedalling the bike will rapidly decelerate) and at 15% gradients he's probably under 15km/h.

 

Presumably people will now start advocating the use of helmets for fast run intervals?

 

Descending, riding near traffic or riding at a normal pace, sure, wear a helmet, but I find it hard to castigate someone for not wearing one when riding at a quick run pace.

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Presumably people will now start advocating the use of helmets for fast run intervals?

 

Not for you :lol:

 

riding near traffic

 

When are you near traffic though? You are riding on a public road in a suburb of Melbourne. Are you near it when it comes around a blind corner and see's you at the last moment?

Edited by Steno

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You could ask the same question in regards to a Sunday cruise on a quiet, off road bike path without a helmet....but doesn't take long for a dog to run out into your front wheel and you head butt the road. It has happened to me and I ended up with a broken arm...which could have been a head injury also if not for helmet.

 

Just can't think of a good reason not to wear a helmet all the time. Dumb way to die without it...

Edited by CEM
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but I find it hard to castigate someone for not wearing one when riding at a quick run pace.

 

I must have missed the "Slowly riding up hill" exemption in the helmet laws.....

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Thanks for posting Roxii, makes me feel like home. By the way, we still don't have helmet laws in The Netherlands and I think that the first politician who would propose to make it mandatory would be kicked out in no time! Having said that, serious cyclists all wear them (ie people doing >20 kph on road bikes, not the folks you see above).

 

Did 3 repeats of the 1 in 20 yesterday, all with helmet on, and 39/23 is as good as it gets on my tt bike...

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Somewhat related in terms of contemplating personal risk:

 

On Sunday my friend was pondering on facebook whether to go for a run in the storm.

I was the one being a nana replying that the risk of falling trees, powerlines, and cars sliding off the road put it in the "not a great idea" basket. However others (rightly) pointed out that the risks were still minimal and she should go for it (indeed those exact words).

In the end my friend had a great run. But some poor woman standing on a bike path elsewhere in Brisbane lost her child when a tree fell on them.

 

Was so sad to hear that. I ran there this morning and saw the tree in question blocking the path. I ran there on Sunday morning and cut my run short because I could see the trees swaying around so much in the wind I very aware of the possibility of a tree coming down on me. So regarding personal risk I made a decision to go for a run in those conditions initially then changed my mind part way through when my senses tweaked that it wasn't worth the risk.

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I just happen to have an exemption for not wearing at a helmet whilst riding a bicycle. It expires in a month. There aren't many of these floating around the state and it is on medical grounds. I still wear one but I can choose to go commando if I so desire :-) Unless you have one of these, you should be strapping one on.

 

It it's your life and you can choose to live it or end it any way you please, but please don't commit suicide because that is illegal.

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Yeah all with life threatening injuries. :rolleyes:

 

Concussion, blowout fractures, not to mention the rooted shoulders and broken ribs.

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I've posted these before and I'll probably post them again. M7 bike path, clear weather, not going real fast, last long easy ride before Huski, don't know what I hit, just went straight over the bars. Came to as the ambos arrived. Collateral:

  • concussion
  • 6 stitches in temple
  • broken nose
  • Grade 2 AC separation
  • skin off face, shoulder, arm, both knees
  • massive haematoma from left pedal, staining still visible three years later.

 

You can evaluate the risk for yourself.

 

Helmet compression:

 

crushedhelmet.jpg

 

My precious blood:

scrapedhelmet.jpg

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ouch. I have had some close calls on the M7 but always due to idiots that don't have control of their pets

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The last chicane north of Cowpasture Road heading southwards, the one where the high rise distribution centre looms right in front of you.

 

There were no houses around three years ago, indeed, I think the airfield was still operating.

 

So I don't think this was a dog. Sand, a stick, who knows??

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No doubt I'll get abused as should know better, but on teh weekend, my ED is not full of cyclists, it's full of football players, none of whom made any attempt to evade teh collision which injured them.

 

 

Wouldn't that mean that the helmets are working?

 

Apart from the obvious, I wear a helmet because I tell the kids they need to. It's bad enough when other kids aren't wearing them, but if they saw me without it......

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Am not an expert but in skiing and snowboarding it is commonly thought that helmets rarely save lives. If the impact is great enough to kill you it will with or without a helmet. The do stop some skull fractures/ bruises and maybe concussion though. I wouldn't be surprised to hear the same is true for cycling. My opinion is cycling helmet laws should be repealed, as it stops people commuting.

 

As a 21 year old I rode a motorbike around Greek Islands without a helmet and when I went back as a 30 something I was looking forward to do it again and was stressed that the laws would have toughened up - that hadn't and I loved it again.

 

I do think the 'nanny state' mentality is stronger than anywhere else in the world in Aus. If someone does something stupid and dies or is badly injured in Aus there is national outcry for the govt to stop people doing stupid things, instead of thinking 'that was a pretty silly thing to do'.

 

I can see both sides as here in Japan there is more than one person a day dying from falls on construction sites and from roofs clearing snow but still harnesses are hardly used/ enforced, and the lack of responsible service of alcohol has caused a few deaths (not finding their way home and freezing to death) in our village in the last few years - not to mention some wayward posting/texting = ).

 

Not sure where the balance is Aus is too tight and Japan too loose IMO.

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You're a big boy Blair, you don't need the endorsement of, or absolution from the forum, it's your choice. The current fine is $176. I could think of better things to spend my money on. The trouble with a dynamic environment, like a public road, is conditions and therefore risk factors, can and do change very quickly.

 

Yep, once upon a time we didn't need to wear seatbelts, or motorcycle helmets and could have a few sherbets on the way home. The good old days. Yep in the good old days, like 1970, the Victorian road toll was 1061. A few forward thinking individuals decided that was unacceptable and as a result of a combination of factors the road toll for Victoria in 2012 was 282.

 

Yes, a lot of factors have contributed to that reduction, safer cars, better designed roads, lower speed limits etc, but there is no doubt helmet, seatbelt and drink drive laws have been major contributing factors.

 

Sometimes the good old days weren't as good as we like to remember.

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I did not see a car on either the way down nor the way up (which is quite common for that particular stretch), nor was I riding over 20km/h and I consider myself to be a pretty skilful cyclist. I know it's against the law ride without a helmet, and if I had been issued with a fine I would be happy to pay it, but under the circumstances was it really such a bad thing?

 

Gees I don't know... Last night I drove home after having several beers at the pub. I knew I was over the limit, but I'm a pretty good driver and I went home via some really quiet streets where you hardly ever see anyone. Besides, I went really really slow and at a speed that wouldn't hurt anyone anyway. I guess I could have walked, but my legs were sore. If I got a fine I'd be happy to pay it... is that Ok?

 

 

Am definitely not having a go at you Blair. In fact, I think you’ve raised a really good question. After all, it's your head and you should be able to do what you want with it. But personally I wouldn't want to increase the risk of me not being able to support my family, or worse still become a burden on my family - even if it is only a small risk.

 

Sometimes we should do the right thing simply because it's just the right thing to do.

Edited by Go Easy

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Gees I don't know... Last night I drove home after having several beers at the pub. I knew I was over the limit, but I'm a pretty good driver and I went home via some really quiet streets where you hardly ever see anyone. Besides, I went really really slow and at a speed that wouldn't hurt anyone anyway. I guess I could have walked, but my legs were sore. If I got a fine I'd be happy to pay it... is that Ok?

 

 

It's a poor analogy. By drink driving you'd be putting OTHER people in danger. By not wearing a helmet, you're only endangering yourself. It's a significant difference. A better analogy would be Blair temporarily not wearing a seatbelt whilst driving slowly to the shops on suburban back roads, yet being quite happy to wear one on the freeway.

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Any temps over 28C have me shaking like an allergenic nervous wreck, but when I've been climbing in high temps, I've always found the sunglasses on my face make me feel hotter than having my helmet on does.

 

No helmet laws in the UK, but fark me, you'd be pretty cold riding without one at the moment. I'm scouring bric a brac shops for an extra large tea cosy to cover mine with :shock::smile1:

Edited by FatPom

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You're not going to hell, it doesn't exist. Where ever it is that you are going to end up though you might get there sooner.

 

Whenever I see folks out riding with their helmets but not wearing them I just tell them to leave it at home next time so as not to confuse the coroner. I imagine it's a hell of a lot less work than if they have to figure out whether the helmet failed or not.

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It's a poor analogy. By drink driving you'd be putting OTHER people in danger.

 

That's why I said drive slowly 'at a speed that wouldn't hurt anyone'...

By not wearing a helmet, you're only endangering yourself.

 

Keep reading Donncha. Let me know when you get to the bit about 'it's your head, but personally I wouldn't want to burden my family with a head injury'.

A better analogy would be Blair temporarily not wearing a seatbelt whilst driving slowly to the shops.

 

Yeah, I could have said that... but it probably wouldn't have had the same impact.

 

Some people seem to think that driving home drunk is ok as well. Doesn't make it right though.

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The problem is accidents happen when you least expect them and often when we are at our most complacent because we think we're safe.

 

In the past 5 or 6 years I've ridden tens of thousands of kilometres including lots of quick riding and even some track racing. I went for a 2km mtb ride with my 7y/o son - I doubt we went over 15kph - and ended up over the bars with a broken arm. Had I not had a helmet I would have been much more seriously injured as my head hit with a solid bang (we were on a concrete path). Low speed crashes can still hurt you. Your head is about 6ft above the ground when riding, even with zero forward motion try falling head first from 6ft and see how you feel.

 

I'm not your mother so it doesn't bother me what you do, but me or my kids don't leave home without a lid.

Edited by trinube

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