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Use your head..wear a helmet!

Written by Claire Bourne on . Posted in Glenside News

Bikeability

Cycle helmets have been around since 1975 and wearing a cycle helmet has been encouraged by cyclists as a key element of road safety since the 1980’s. As a provider of neuro-rehabilitation services, Glenside has always encouraged our staff to wear a cycle helmet, as we sometimes need to provide rehabilitation and care to individual’s with a brain injury, resulting from a cycling accident.

As an extension of this policy, Glenside decided to launch a campaign, working with Stonehenge Cycles, to provide cycle helmets to local Salisbury schools participating in the Bikeability Training course, managed by Wiltshire Council.

Bikeability is the government approved National Standards for Cycle Training, which teaches school pupils in Year 6 the necessary skills to ride confidently on today’s roads. Bikeability is organised by Wiltshire Council in conjunction with schools. More information can be found here: www.bikeability.org.uk

Cycle helmets act as a shock absorber and are said to protect the head by reducing the rate at which the skull and brain are accelerated or decelerated by an impact. In the event of a fall, it is widely acknowledged that a cycle helmet may substantially reduce the incidence and severity of head injuries. Cycle helmets provide best protection in situations involving simple, low-speed falls with no other party involved.

Although it is also noted that the risks associated with cycling as a form of transport, especially the likelihood of serious injury, are significantly impacted by inappropriate driving / motor vehicle use by external parties and / or by poor cycling behaviour.

According to the latest research led by the University of New South Wales, in Australia, cycle helmets are proven to reduce the chances of suffering a fatal head injury or sustaining a lifelong disability by as much as 65% and 69% respectively. This research backs numerous additional peer-reviewed studies confirming the effectiveness of cycle helmets. Leading UK-wide brain injury charity Headway also supports the wearing of cycle helmets. Charity spokesman Luke Griggs said: “Cycling is a fabulous way to keep fit and active. At Headway, we are passionate about promoting safe cycling, while supporting calls to make it safer for people of all ages to take to their bikes and get pedalling.

“Sadly, however, we know too well of the devastating effects a brain injury can have and a number of people we support sustained their injuries through cycling accidents. This is why we encourage cyclists of all ages and experience to wear helmets, particularly vulnerable road users such as children who do not possess the same level of competency as adults.”

Glenside will be distributing cycle helmets which meet the minimum British Standard required (BS1078) to local Salisbury schools to facilitate the ability of all pupils to attend the Bikeability training course. Schools wishing to organise Bikeability training courses can do so by contacting Wiltshire Council road safety team on 01225 701970, or via email roadsafetyeducation@wiltshire.gov.uk