Increased trend for head injuries

Sep 13, 2010
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Weylandt, Soler, Horner, Boonen, Brajkovic

http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/pro-cycling-plagued-by-head-injuries

I think the fact bikes are now lighter greatly increases propulsion. I heard bikes today can add 3kph to those of 10 years ago. That must have a dramatic impact overall on incidents generally.

Helmet designers have to questioned as to the merits of their products.

Radios encourage riders going for gaps that may not be there.

Solutions? Go back to heavier bikes, impose higher standards on helmet design, and ban radios.
 
Jul 16, 2010
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Leif Hoste still has major headaches because of his crash at the Driedaagse de Panne. A race where there were no radios.
 
Jun 1, 2011
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Basecase said:
Weylandt, Soler, Horner, Boonen, Brajkovic

http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/pro-cycling-plagued-by-head-injuries

I think the fact bikes are now lighter greatly increases propulsion. I heard bikes today can add 3kph to those of 10 years ago. That must have a dramatic impact overall on incidents generally.

Helmet designers have to questioned as to the merits of their products.

Radios encourage riders going for gaps that may not be there.

Solutions? Go back to heavier bikes, impose higher standards on helmet design, and ban radios.
You left out wheels. Saw some riders in the sprinter war with at least zipp 808s. That's insane with the wind. You can't really control a bike for riding in the bunch with that kind of depth.
 
Jun 21, 2011
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Doesn't matter if you're riding at 50kph or 30kph, if the guy a foot away has an accident there is no way you're avoiding it.

Of the suggestions mentioned redesigning helmets is most sensible one. Clearly they're not doing the job they're supposed to.
 
Ragerod said:
Doesn't matter if you're riding at 50kph or 30kph, if the guy a foot away has an accident there is no way you're avoiding it.

Of the suggestions mentioned redesigning helmets is most sensible one. Clearly they're not doing the job they're supposed to.
But there's a way to brace yourself for impact--e.g. throwing out your arms to save your brain.
This is much harder to do when you're riding at a high rate of speed, which according to reports, is what they were doing.
I wonder what the rate of brain injuries were prior to the mandatory helmet rule.
 
Jun 1, 2011
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Ragerod said:
Doesn't matter if you're riding at 50kph or 30kph, if the guy a foot away has an accident there is no way you're avoiding it.

Of the suggestions mentioned redesigning helmets is most sensible one. Clearly they're not doing the job they're supposed to.
In the case of Horner and Brajkovic, the impact seems to have been about the face (broken nose and cuts for Horner and the deep eye gash on Jani.) Symptomatic of a stiff deep section front wheel=face plant.
 
BillytheKid said:
re..helmets don't protect the face.
they could. It was funny to me that versus chose today to highlight the lightness and ventilation of the latest giro helmet, perhaps a bit more protection for guys who routinely are going over 50k/30mph.

I wasn't exactly thinking of lightness and wheels for increased injury, but perhaps this isn't the section of the forum to account for increased speeds.
 
BillytheKid said:
You left out wheels. Saw some riders in the sprinter war with at least zipp 808s. That's insane with the wind. You can't really control a bike for riding in the bunch with that kind of depth.
Armstrong & Wegelius agree. They've having a Twitter swap on deep rims. Also suggest the poor braking on 808s et al for the crashes.
 
Jun 21, 2011
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the delgados said:
But there's a way to brace yourself for impact--e.g. throwing out your arms to save your brain.
This is much harder to do when you're riding at a high rate of speed, which according to reports, is what they were doing.
I wonder what the rate of brain injuries were prior to the mandatory helmet rule.
But you don't raise your arms to protect your head, you use them to break your fall.

BillytheKid said:
In the case of Horner and Brajkovic, the impact seems to have been about the face (broken nose and cuts for Horner and the deep eye gash on Jani.) Symptomatic of a stiff deep section front wheel=face plant.
BillytheKid said:
re..helmets don't protect the face.
So what? If guys keep on getting concussions, brain damage or die because they smacked their face into an object then there's a strong argument to introduce full-face helmets or least re-design them to provide better protection.
 
Apr 2, 2010
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I agree with much of the above bust mostly believe helmets are not keeping up with safety. They focus on light weight and ventilation.

I do believe an ITT in the first week would settle down the peleton a little more.
 
May 23, 2011
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Ragerod said:
So what? If guys keep on getting concussions, brain damage or die because they smacked their face into an object then there's a strong argument to introduce full-face helmets or least re-design them to provide better protection.
Uh, yeah. The Dark Vader look will be very telegenic.

Is there not a quote from Cipollini about helmets causing people to ride much more aggressively?
 
Jun 21, 2011
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Damiano Machiavelli said:
Uh, yeah. The Dark Vader look will be very telegenic.

Is there not a quote from Cipollini about helmets causing people to ride much more aggressively?
It's not ideal but if having 200 Darth Vader look-a-likes keeps guys in the race and out of hospital then I'm for it.
 
Oct 18, 2009
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Basecase said:
Weylandt, Soler, Horner, Boonen, Brajkovic

http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/pro-cycling-plagued-by-head-injuries

I think the fact bikes are now lighter greatly increases propulsion. I heard bikes today can add 3kph to those of 10 years ago. That must have a dramatic impact overall on incidents generally.

Helmet designers have to questioned as to the merits of their products.

Radios encourage riders going for gaps that may not be there.

Solutions? Go back to heavier bikes, impose higher standards on helmet design, and ban radios.
[/IMG]


I totally agree the wheels of Today are Shyte ! Back in the 70s 80s and 90s there were crashes galore but the wheels could take it (and the riders cos they were travelling slower. And psychologically the riders would be more confident hitting the deck with a steel frame than with a carbon pice of shi1t) and the end result would be less injuries
 
El Pistolero said:
Leif Hoste still has major headaches because of his crash at the Driedaagse de Panne. A race where there were no radios.
Trying to stir something up?;)

Last fall there was the same discussion in American Football about concussions. Many pointed to a growing trend of head injuries to ask for change or to blame the organization. Many however, felt that it was a result of better diagnostics and medical science.

I don't know enough about cycling history, or have any hard data on injuries, but I imagine (unfortunately) that these types of head injuries have been as common for many years, and that medical technology provides better detection, and thus more attention to the fact.


That being said, what can be done? I don't mean to sound sarcastic, but obviously we have exhausted most possibilities of safe yet engaging competition. I will say I'm glad I'm not the one charged to find a solution: it is too difficult
 
May 14, 2010
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BillytheKid said:
You left out wheels. Saw some riders in the sprinter war with at least zipp 808s. That's insane with the wind. You can't really control a bike for riding in the bunch with that kind of depth.
BillytheKid said:
I think the UCI should limit wheel depth to 30 mm for non TT stages and races.
BillytheKid said:
In the case of Horner and Brajkovic, the impact seems to have been about the face (broken nose and cuts for Horner and the deep eye gash on Jani.) Symptomatic of a stiff deep section front wheel=face plant.
I totally agree with this suggestion. This could actually save lives.

Damiano Machiavelli said:
Uh, yeah. The Dark Vader look will be very telegenic.

Is there not a quote from Cipollini about helmets causing people to ride much more aggressively?
No doubt there is. Probably not the only quote from him that doesn't bear up to scrutiny. If you've ever watched old races, you can see at a glance that they rode every bit as aggressively before helmets - if not more so.

Helmets keep getting lighter and more ventilated. Maybe they've gone too far and need to beef them up.
 
May 23, 2011
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Maxiton said:
No doubt there is. Probably not the only quote from him that doesn't bear up to scrutiny. If you've ever watched old races, you can see at a glance that they rode every bit as aggressively before helmets - if not more so.

Helmets keep getting lighter and more ventilated. Maybe they've gone too far and need to beef them up.
How do you know that it does not bear up to scrutiny? Risk compensation is a well known phenomena. People's perception of the value of helmets exceeds the actual protective value.
 
May 14, 2010
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Damiano Machiavelli said:
How do you know that it does not bear up to scrutiny? Risk compensation is a well known phenomena. People's perception of the value of helmets exceeds the actual protective value.
Phenomenon. But in any case that's not what I was disagreeing with. I was disagreeing with the idea that people - you know, Hinault, Roche, Merckx, those people - rode less aggressively before helmets. I think that's BS.
 
Jul 23, 2009
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What scares me most is seeing riders back on their bikes when they're concussed. The Boonen interview reveals how dangerous a concussed rider can be to himself and the rest of the group. A lot of pro hockey players with concussions report feeling nauseous with massive headaches for days if they experience even minor stimuli like television or a light source. Imagine riding a bike among the colours and noises of the TDF peloton. It's a tough call in a sport where time is everything, but I'd far rather see a doctor or DS (yeah, right) pull a rider out than see someone take a second consecutive knock to the noggin.

I was a danger for the other riders, too. I think I suffered a concussion. Noise, colours... I couldn't stand them. A honking car that passed was echoing a thousand times in my head. Yesterday was a dark day - due to the rain - and maybe that's why it went better."

<snip>

Riders like Fabian Cancellara (Leopard-Trek) and Carlos Barredo (Rabobank) informed Boonen's director sportif Wilfried Peeters that Boonen was a danger for the other riders and himself. He dropped back to the team car with director sportif Wilfried Peeters three times.
 
One thing to remember about upward trends in concussions is the increased awareness about concussions today and methods for diagnosing concussions has gotten better than it was 10 year ago. Also what causes riders to go down with light wheels may still also cause them to go down with heavier wheels, and so on. Even so, I keep an open mind about component technology because safety should be #1. Over-teching bike components should not be at some significant expense to safety.

edit: maybe some component standards need to be created or revised?
 
Apr 5, 2010
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I just bought a top end helmet this eve. I started laughing when a warning read something like this: "this helmet is designed to protect against major (skull crushing) injuries and is not designed to protect against other dangerous injuries such as concussions"

I've had quite a beef with helmet design for many years. Part of the problem is a nice little label inside that read: CPSC.

Consumer product safety commission. USA for we know what's best for you.

I went over the bars on my mtb a few months ago and landed hard on my head. I had bruises on my scalp, red and swollen and in a perfect pattern to match the inner shell of my helmet, like someone attached my helmet to the end of a sledgehammer and hit me on top of my head with it.

Yes, I know, it prevented the potentially fatal impact from the rock I landed on- but somewhere out there, the sense and technology is there to provide at least 10 mm of soft padding under the hard styrofoam shell so that I don't feel as if I just had a a$$$ beatin on the top of my head??? I read a great motorcycle road racing spine protector impact test once upon a time.... the most impact absorbing product/medium they used was a ham and cheese sandwich on white bread, no kidding.

The biggest problem is the regulatory agencies and the tests they dictate the helmets mfrs must pass.

It's a joke, just like the snell standard. I could go on and on and on. What's sad is that it will take 20 years for standards to be revised, if ever.

Anyone out there involved in the helmet design industry or work for or know how to make a stink so helmet certification standards are redesigned?
 

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