Originally Posted by Snowolf
Fact of the matter is that even without helmet use, skiing and riding is actually statistically a very safe sport. You are hundreds of times more likely to receive a head injury in the car crash on the way to or from the mountain.
Snowolf, I think your basic point is that people shouldn't be mean, and I agree with that. But by the same token, the rhetoric on both sides should be fair. The part of your post quoted above I think is irresponsible. It is a completely unsubstantiated claim and has no basis in fact (unless you want to point to surveys or actual facts). Perhaps you are looking at statistics of overall numbers of accidents instead of per capita stats, as obviously a greater number of people drive cars per day than snowboard.
I don't have statistics, but speaking from my own experience, I know that head injuries resulting from snowboarding accidents are many times more likely than driving. I only started wearing a helmet about 8 years ago, less than half of my riding career. When I rode without a helmet, I routinely hit my head on the ground (most of my time was on the ice coast). I never got a concussion (that I know of), but I would often get insane headaches. This would happen at least once every 5 days of riding. My day was over when the headache became unbearable. My brother did get a concussion while snowboarding (along with a broken collar bone and shoulder), but he was never in a car accident. I also never hit my head when I was driving in nearly 20 years nor do I think it very likely.
I've seen this "driving is more dangerous than snowboarding" argument on here a number of times. I really think we need to dispel ourselves of this ridiculous notion in order to more fairly assess the actual risks. It's just not true.
But as to the merits of this thread, as with all internet bickering, one side inflates the arguments of the other, the other responds with insults and then everyone is making comparisons to Hitler and born again christians. I've seen it a hundred times.
From what I can tell, the two sides essentially come down to:
: Adults are generally smart enough to appreciate the risks in the things they do and have the right to deny reasonable precautions despite their proven efficacy.
: Helmets are demonstrably safer, non-obtrusive, and give me the warm fuzzies. I don't understand why someone would purposely put themselves at additional risk by not wearing one, but at the same time I desperately want everyone on the mountain to wear one because then I'll feel like less of a dork.
Maybe we can all agree on this, or something close, and move on.