Riding Helmet


Two Seasoned Rider with their riding helmets on ready to ride

I would say that I advocate for wearing a helmet when you are riding, but, that said, let me be honest I rode for years without wearing a helmet. I was 12 years old when I got my first horse in 1975 and at that time helmets were not prevalent. Jockeys and some who rode Hunter/Jumpers wore helmets, but not the majority of horsemen/women. I was very fortunate not to have had a serious incident riding in those years I didn't wear a helmet.

Like many others I would say "I have ridden for years and I have never taken a bad fall, so I'm not going to worry," and shrug it off when the topic was brought up. Another aguement against wearing one would be"it's hot and uncomfortable," and yes they can big hot, but if fitted correctly a helmet is not is uncomfortable. I plead guilty on both excuses, but thanks to some fellow horsewomen who believed in helmets when riding I gradually changed my view of wearing a helmet when I rode.

Sadly the thing that shook me to my core about wearing a helmet was when a friend's husband had a terrible riding accident that caused a traumatic brain injury that left him in a wheel chair. I have seen what my friend as gone through over the years since that awful accident - it changed everything for her whole family. She calls it her "new normal", but it's been so hard for her to see her husband, father of her children and best friend dealing with a brain injury.

It was after that accident that I realized that it didn't matter whether you were a seasoned, experienced rider or how well trained and steady your horse may be you need to " procect you brain," as a friend of mine always says. So please think about what I said here. Think about how important it is to you and your family for you to wear a riding helmet.