Skateboard helmets, the most under utilized piece of sporting equipment ever. Of all the sports out there where is makes the most sense to wear a helmet to protect your head, skateboarding tops my list. Unlike skiing and snowboarding where you are surrounded, for the most part, by somewhat soft snow, or kayaking where you can’t hurt your head by smacking it on the water, skateboarding is performed on either concrete, asphalt, or wood. These are all very unforgiving surface materials.
Plus the nature of the tricks and maneuvers performed when skateboarding typically require a certain number of tumbles and crashes while in the learning and testing stages. And the more experienced one get, the more skilled at tricks, the difficulty level, and thus the potential danger level, increases.The chances of hitting your head while skateboarding is pretty high and the likelihood that such an impact will be damaging is also pretty high.
But Skateboard Helmets Aren’t “Cool”
This is probably the most common response from skateboarders when asked why they don’t wear a skateboard helmet. They aren’t cool. They don’t match my style. They are “distracting”. Skateboarders hide behind the idea that skateboarding is a form of expression and wearing a helmet suppresses that expression. Right. How can you express yourself if your head is covered by an “uncool” helmet.
It might be hard for most teenagers to understand the concept of mortality or vulnerability. Most feel they are indestructible and will bounce back from any injury. Right, and they also won’t grow old or ever die.
Check out this Youtube video made a few years back by some school kids. In the video, they interview four different people, including a skateboard store owner. None of them say they wear a helmets when skateboarding. They admit they don’t wear a helmets because it is too distracting. One of the interviewees take it more like a joke and very eloquently states that helmets “are distracting and they suck” with a big smile on his face. Another describes a crash, which was recorded, and he took such a big fail that he went into a seizure. Crazy.
The store owner, the one “adult” interviewed, says that little kids should wear helmets, which is encouraging, but goes on to reinforce what the others say, that helmets are distracting. He goes on to state that he doesn’t know to many people that hit their head while skateboarding. Yeah, I guess that doesn’t happen….NOT!
Skateboard Helmets are not Just for Kids and Beginners
In 2009, a 36 year old skateboard veteran, Paul Maxim, died from a head injury he suffered at a skateboard park. Maxim hit his head after colliding with another skateboarder and died a few days later. Officials determined that if Maxim had been wearing a helmet, he would have survived. He probably wouldn’t even had gone to the hospital.
The point is that a lot of skateboarders say that kids and beginners should probably wear helmets as they are “the most likely to fall and hurt themselves.” The truth is that it can happen to anyone and it does. The gentleman mentioned above was 36 years old and a veteran skateboarder. Not a beginner, not a novice, not a kid.
The thing is that as skateboarders get more and more skilled at riding, they take more and more risks. The jumps get higher. The rail slides get longer. They number of steps they sail over increases. The drop gets higher.
At the same time, the crashes get more intense and the risk increases. The potential for serious damage increases. Beginners aren’t catching the wrong edge and flying and flipping15 feet through the air. It really is the more experienced and higher risk taking skateboarders that need the proper protection for such crashes. They fall and fail probably more than your typical beginner and they do it harder. They are the ones that should be wearing skateboard helmets.
Take a look at this experienced skateboard’s close call with a serious head injury. He hits the back of his head after falling while performing a fairly simple maneuver that he had probably done many times before. He suffers a 6 hour memory loss, but is able to come back and skate again. The next time though is with a helmet. Oh yeah, he is also on a skate team.
Get a Skateboard Helmet – Make the Right Choice, Not the Easy Choice
So where can you get a hold of a skateboard helmet? One option is at your local sporting goods or department store, but you will be limited to what ever they stock. Do you have a skate shop in town? They probably have a pretty decent selection of skateboard helmets, but they also might charge a bit more than the exact same helmet you can find online.
The best place to purchase a skateboard helmet online is through Amazon. They have a great selection of skateboard helmets from manufacturers like Triple 8, Protec, and Punisher Skateboards. Plus, a lot of the helmets can be shipped to your door in two days with free shipping through Amazon Prime.
Check them out below:
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