Helmet safety

by Lara As we got ready to go for a bike ride earlier this week and I fastened helmets onto all three of kids' heads I thought to myself "these helmets don't seem to fit quite right".  I also thought, I bet I'm supposed to get the kids to wear helmets even when they're riding trikes in the driveaway aren't I?  (something I honestly have never really bothered with even on a walk around the block on a push trike.)

So I asked Karyn from Tail Wags if she might have some information to share on helmet safety.

Here's what she sent me:

Kids should take advantage of the warmer months to be active outdoors. Riding tricycles and bikes is as much a part of summer as ice cream and running through the sprinkler. It’s our responsibility as parents to protect our children from unnecessary injury.

Biking is a fun sport and family activity but it can be risky without a safety helmet, particularly for children under three years of age. Babies are born with soft skulls to facilitate the birth process and allow their brains to grow, but this means their heads are especially susceptible to harm. The “soft spot” usually disappears around 2 years of age but children can still sustain a head injury even from a relatively minor fall if they are not wearing a proper safety helmet. I encourage parents to keep this in mind: if you dropped a ripe melon on concrete from 2 feet off the ground, what would happen? Of course, the melon would break open. The risk to children is equally great if they are not wearing a helmet. In Canada, children 16 years of age and under are required by law to wear safety helmets while riding tricycles and bicycles. Helmet use is also mandatory for children riding in a bike carrier on an adult bike, as well as riding in a “Chariot” pulled by a bike.

Please make sure your child's bike and safety helmet are the right size. A child must be able to straddle the bike with both feet on the ground. The fit of the safety helmet is incredibly important. When choosing a helmet, your child should try on several helmets carefully. Level the helmet over your child's forehead and adjust the chinstrap to fit snugly and comfortably. It should protect the forehead without slipping forward or backward and it should not move unless the scalp moves. A trained salesperson will help you ensure the fit is right. Today, there are several manufacturers producing helmets that are adjustable in size, enabling it to grow with your child and still provide a comfortable and proper fit.

Insist your child always wears a helmet when riding and that he or she buckles it up. It goes without saying that parents must set an example by always wearing their helmets when cycling as well. Remember, a helmet only works when you wear it!

Do you have helmets for all your kids?

Karyn Climans is the owner of Tail Wags Helmet Covers, a company devoted to encouraging more children and adults to wear their safety helmets. One of her goals is to prevent unnecessary head injuries and it is her passion for safety awareness.

Enhanced by Zemanta

The Royal Ball - Ottawa Children's Gala

by Alanna Last Saturday my Lily and I were lucky enough to attend the Ottawa Children's Gala.  I had been wanting to take her since I heard about last years fun.  I had looked at the price of the tickets and thought "Maybe next year".  This year ended up being different.  I was commissioned to do a banner and tags for the candy buffet at the event which in turn earned me an adult ticket!!  I really had no idea what to expect.  We got all dolled up in our best (well I had to go shopping) and headed off to the Hampton Garden Inn.

WOW!! What an event it was.  There was face painting, Princess', the most wonderful meal and entertainment from Orpheus and Pulse N' limited (amazing).  The rules for the night were 1. let the children do what they want and 2. remember rule one!!  My Lily had a blast.  Dancing, running around after Snow White and the list goes on.

This post, however, is not about the fun we had, it's about the cause.  Behind all of this fun is a very serious and important message.  Think First is the brain child (excuse the pun) of Dr. Charles Tator. It was developed out of a concern for the increasing number of brain injuries in children.  The group is Canada wide and growing.  They educate children from kindergarten up in the importance of helmet safety.  They even go so far as to replace ill-fitting helmets and provide helmets to children who are not able to afford one.

What I learned at the Gala was how VERY important it is to not take a chance.  There were three very well spoken teens who are the spokespersons for the group.  All three had serious head injuries which could have been prevented just by wearing a helmet!!  Their message to children/teens and parents - It takes two seconds to put on a helmet - Just do it!!  This applies to ANY winter sport - including tobogganing and almost all summer sports.  I know that hearing their message certainly reinforced my strict policy on helmets with my children and any children in my care!!

Another wonderful thing about this group is that they will go anywhere to share their message.  If you are part of an event or planning one, think about inviting them to set up a table with their Jello brain demo and educational materials.  We are planning to invite them to our endo of the year school social. The children will be asked to ride their bikes to the event where they can have their helmets checked.  It is a great time just before the end of school when the adventure begins.

Have a look at the site.  Check helmets.  Better fun than sorry.


Alanna is a mother of two beauties, Nora age 3 (aka coconut) and Avery 5 (aka polka dot). Former ECE turned mother, party planner and blogger.  Never a dull moment around this house.