Jason Mitchell, Seismic Nationals 2007, Hybrid Slalom.  Photo by Greg Fadell Northern California Downhill Skateboarding Association
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Dr David Hartman on Head Injuries

 
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Q&A: Dr David Hartman on Head Injuries (823 Posts)
Topic Comment
statistice about skateboarding injuries
On 8/14/2012 Teresa Waters wrote in from United States  (72.56.nnn.nnn)

http://www.skatepark.org/park-development/2012/01/2011-skateboarding-fatalities/

hospitals and Emergency treatment centers in the USA treat all wheeled toys (scooters, roller skates, ripsticks, skateboards) alike when the put down the head injury stat.s. Don't be fooled.

There are less skateboarding head injuries than some want you to believe!

 
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Helmet for a Promise at 4000+ and counting...
On 5/20/2012 Barry Tilmann wrote in from United States  (65.32.nnn.nnn)

It has been sometime since our last post. The Ian Tilmann Foubdation, Inc. has operated the "Helmet for a Promise" program Florida since 2006. In that time over 4000+ Skaters have made the promise and received a free skateboard helmet. The program is simple...if you promise to wear the helmet every time you skate...we will give you one free! The program operates in Skate Parks where helmets are picked up for free.

For the past 3 years The Helmet for a Promise program has been available nationally. Log on to our website and download the Helmet Registration to make get in line for a FREE helmet for your promise. The FREE Helmet is direct shipped to you for a $10 fee. We offer both S-ONE and Bern helmets.

GO TO..... www.theiantilmannfoundation.org
Click the "Helmet for a Promise" icon..the rest is simple.

SKATE SMART...
WEAR A HELMET...
LIVE TO SKATE TOMORROW!

The Ian Tilmann Foundation, Inc.
Marcy & Barry Tilmann

 
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S.H.I.
On 7/21/2011 Mark Eddings wrote in from United States  (98.83.nnn.nnn)

In 1978 I slammed doing a routine frontside air in a concrete halfpipe in Gadsden,Al. I dont remember the fall, but from what my friend Tim said I never got my front wheels down on landing.I guess I did a manual down the wall until I hit the meat of the transition.He said the board shot out and I hit on my ass and my spine became a "whip". Well, . .my head was at the end of that whip.I spent the night in the hospital and was transfered to Birmingham the next day.I had a fractured skull.My brain began swelling and I had a subdural hematoma of the left temporal lobe of my brain. Yeah. It gets worse. On day 3 I began to lose cranial spinal fluid through my nose. This is when I realized I was in deep s#@!. I spent a total of 18 days in the hospital. The spinal fluid stopped leaking on day 8. They had already told me that if it didnt stop in 10 mdays they would have to do some kind of brain surgery. I was only 18. Like a lot of young men I thought I was bullit proof. lol. Anyway, I survived ONLY because I had a helmet on. No helmet and Im either dead or wearing diapers for the rest of my life. Even with a helmet I still ended up permanantly losing my hearing in my left ear. I continued to skate and still skate pools/parks/streets etc. It hasnt been easy. Balance issue's, irrational behavour, mood swings etc. But at least Im alive and kickin ! YES ! MY HELMET SAVED MY LIFE ! I always wear my helmet. YOUR AN IDIOT IF YOU DONT ! If you dont want to wear pads thats cool I guess,but always WRAP THAT ONION ! KEEP SHREDDIN !

 
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Thank you Barry
On 4/19/2009 DrDave wrote in from United States  (24.13.nnn.nnn)

Thanks Barry! I've forwarded this information to several professional listserves, who will hopefully pass it on to their patients. Even if it saves only a single life, it's a good deed beyond description.

DrDave

 
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Helmet for a Promise Goes National
On 4/15/2009 The Ian Tilmann Foundation, Inc. wrote in from United States  (72.187.nnn.nnn)

The Ian Tilmann Foubdation, Inc. has operated the "Helmet for a Promise" program Florida since 2006. In that time over 1600+ Skaters have made the promise and received a free skateboard helmet. The program is simple...if you promise to wear the helmet every time you skate...we will give you one free! The program operates in six Florida skate parks where helemts are picked up for free.

Now The Helmet for a Promise program has gone national. Log on to our website and download the Helmet Registration to make your promise. The FREE Helmet is direct shipped to you for a $7 fee. We offer both S-ONE and Bern helmets.

GO TO..... www.theiantilmannfoundation.org
Click the "Helmet for a Promise" icon..the rest is simple.

SKATE SMART...
WEAR A HELMET...
LIVE TO SKATE TOMORROW!

The Ian Tilmann Foundation, Inc.
Barry Tilmann

 
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correction
On 3/19/2009 DrDave wrote in from United States  (24.13.nnn.nnn)

"epidural" is between the skull and the dura, where blood can collect if a blood vessel is broken or torn. Enough blood and enough pressure on the brain and it can damage or constrict other routes of blood flow, or actually push the brain through the opening at the bottom of the skull

DrDH

 
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Would a helmet have saved her life?
On 3/19/2009 DrDave wrote in from United States  (24.13.nnn.nnn)

Dan,

Good question. If her daath was caused from an epidural (bleeding under the dura layer of the brain) from blunt trauma, the answer is almost certainly "Yes." For example, there are typically 10-15 fatalities each year in Colorado, and only about 6 percent of the fatalities were helmeted. Overall, helmets reduced the risk of brain injury by 74%, and the risk of fatality by 80%. None of the helmeted but brain-injured skiers had intracranial hemorrhages or skull fractures...only 1 of 19 helmeted snowboarders even had a positive CT scan, compared to 25 percent of unhelmeted skiiers and boarders.

This kind of injury is probably the most common and the most easily preventable. There are less common injuries that a helmet would not likely help, for example, a twisting and "dissection" of a neck artery (the walls come apart), or a blow-out of a pre-existing arterial wall weakness. But if she was wearing a helmet, based on the initial reports, she would more than likely be alive today.

DrDave

 
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Richardson
On 3/19/2009 Dan Hughes wrote in from United States  (98.203.nnn.nnn)

Just wondering if you are following the Richardson case and what you think? Would a helmet have saved her?

 
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Canadian Heads
On 12/18/2008 Dr. Dave wrote in from United States  (24.13.nnn.nnn)

It seems that the Canadians don't have the same libertarian anti-helmet ethos that has significantly increased the rate of motorcyclist deaths in states that have repealed helmet laws. It's refreshing to see some skull-saving common sense about helmets.

And for those who insist on their right to injure themselves as they please; are you willing to pay the costs of hospital and nursing care if you smash your brain just enough to paralyze you or destroy your intellect?


Finally, for parents, I know it's difficult, but keeping helmets on your kids could save their lives and their futures. It's no different from that recent episode where a kid was allowed to shoot a machine gun at a gun show and killed himself. Kids' brains don't become fully wired in the judgment centers until the mid-20's, so we can't expect them to act rationally in their own interest, all the time. How would you feel if you didn't insist on your child wearing a helmet and they came back to you in a wheelchair?

DrDave

 
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Helmets
On 12/16/2008 Mischo Erban wrote in from Canada  (75.157.nnn.nnn)

Here is something I recently watched: http://wipeout.knowledgenetwork.ca/wipeout.html

 
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de fense de fense
On 11/29/2008 herbn wrote in from United States  (67.83.nnn.nnn)

de ny de ny,"officer this is just terrible but i didn't know he was back there,he must have been under the view of the rear view mirror"

 
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There ought to be a law. . . and there is
On 11/24/2008 DrDave wrote in from United States  (24.13.nnn.nnn)

Hey Chris,

Just a warning. If you are the one doing the towing, there doesn't have to be a specific criminal law on the books to make you liable if you snuff a kid. You'll lose your license, maybe do jail time for reckless endangerment, and then when you get out the civil lawyers will be all over you until your only asset will be the one attached to your legs. And if you're the one who is being towed, well, there's always a Darwin Award. . .

DrD

 
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Stella's Helmet
On 11/24/2008 DrDave wrote in from United States  (24.13.nnn.nnn)

Stella,

Look for a helmet that (1) fits comfortably (2) approved by one of the official safety agencies (3) is designed for skateboarding. That's it. And if your daughter falls in it, replace it.

DrD.

 
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Another law?
On 11/24/2008 Chris wrote in from United States  (64.128.nnn.nnn)

How about if we make a list of all the things YOU think are stupid and then make them all felonies. Then my mom can make her list and we'll put all those people in prison too. And while we're at it, why doesn't everyone make a list and we'll illegalize everything that anyone thinks is "stupid and criminally negligent".

Well, except for me. I won't make a list and I'll be sure to ignore yours.

 
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Helmets for new skater
On 11/24/2008 Stella wrote in from (173.67.nnn.nnn)

Hi, I am a mom who just bought a VERY used Gravity longboard for my daughter (age 16) who wants a longboard to cruise around town. She is not a skateboarder but is coordinated, etc. Not a daredevil but realized she probably needs a helmet. Any recommendations? I don't know how much she will use it or how long she will use it for. I would appreciate any suggestions. Thx.

 
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And one more law
On 11/20/2008 Dr. Dave wrote in from United States  (24.13.nnn.nnn)

And putting a law on the driver's ed books that makes towing a child behind a car a felony might slather some smarts on individuals studying for their driving test. It's stupid and criminally negligent to tow a kid on a skateboard. Why not make it a law to be learned from the time you apply for your license?

DRD

 
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Laws empower the powerless (parents)
On 11/20/2008 Dr. Dave wrote in from United States  (24.13.nnn.nnn)

Evan,

Laws help order the world, externally and internally. Laws give us pause when we are driving at a higher than safe rate of speed that perhaps there may be a consequence. Laws help society limit behaviors or restrict behaviors that are potentially dangerous such as giving the car keys to 9 year olds. While a law may not prevent a child from taking off a helmet, it can allow a skatepark to set a rule that can be backed up by government and prevents them from being sued for loss of freedom of expression, or whatever.

Remember, neurologically, children do not have an adult's frontal lobe development and frontal lobe development does not become complete until the mid-20's. That means children and adolescents are going to be more impulsive, less planful, and less mindful of consequence. So without an internal frontal lobe, a helmet law helps impose that form of planning from without. It makes a parent's position that much stronger and it makes a town's position that much more immune from anarchy and frivolous lawsuit. No it doesn't eliminate all danger or risk. That's why boarding is an "extreme" sport. It's dangerous; but less dangerous is better. I urge you to rethink this issue and support mandatory helmet laws.

DrDave

DrDave

 
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PLEASE no more laws!!
On 10/15/2008 Evan St.Clair wrote in from United States  (207.59.nnn.nnn)

Theyíre kids and sometimes that is just how it goes. I have two kids and it would kill me to lose one of them. Kids are going to be kids and sometimes things happen. Itís all a fine line that youíre walking every time you do anything that involves you and 5000lbs SUV,concrete or getting air.

Next it will be neck braces because I can tell ALL of you that are using the big downhill helmets and Motocross or Mt. downhill helmets that your head is not meant for that kind of weight and if you take a real header, you could be facing a spinal cord injury and donít even know it. Safety gear will not always save you. I see skaters wearing chest protectors and Iím thinking to myself, ďwhy?Ē Thereís not roost in skateboarding and wearing that and falling can be bad. I have seen them rip armpits open so big you could put your fist in the hole. Theyíre made to keep rocks from hitting you in the chest. Know your gear and use it right or you could end up worse offÖ. If youíre using a full face helmet you should really look into a Leatt brace. I have one and you donít even know you have it on. I will never use a full face helmet without it.
However, I still carve it up on may skateboard from time to time with nothing and I donít want someone telling me I have to wear safety gear. That sucks! I will put it on when
Iím doing something stupid.
It sucks and Iím sorry for the family, but you never know
what would and what would not have saved the kidís life. Youíre getting into the ďpost hoc, ergo propter hocĒ fallacy area. I really disagree that a helmet law is a good thing. You know what you face if you hit your head on concrete. We just have to try and show kids what the right thing to do is if youíre pushing it with any sport. Itís human nature to resist when someone else tries to control you. Forcing kids to wear helmets will only make them rebel. The kids in the skatepark in Asheville are supposed to wear elbow pads and go out with tube socks with the ends cut off instead.
It may be sneaky rebellion or in your face rebellion, but theyíre not going to be told what to do. You canít keep people safe from everything. Itís not how the world works. Next youíll just want to lock kids in closets until adulthood. I can tell you now that I donít want to be told I have to
do anything with my skateboard. Skateboarding is freedom. Life has too many rules as it is. Donít speed, better have your seatbelt on, pay your taxes, pay more taxes, donít be late to work, etc. Itís skateboarding - itís very dangerous and anyone that is afraid of getting hurt should find something else to do!
Kids get killed every day and it has to be one of the saddest things that happens. Both of my boys ride motocross and itís very hard knowing that every time they go out on the track could be the last time they ever walk again. Iím not going to keep them from riding though because they love it. Weíre getting to that bumper sticker: ďIf fun is outlawed, only outlaws will have fun.Ē You canít be safe all of the time. People are smart enough to understand the consequences and donít need laws to keep them safe. If you want your kids to wear helmets, fine, but donít force it on everyone.

This is just my thoughts and I have lost friends doing what they love. Oneís in a wheelchair and has said if he could walk he would do it all again. The bottom line is live every day like itís the last one youíre ever going to see.

FYI - Some may need more than a helmet for the Dixie Cup with the new ramps we have built and Iím not kidding! More info on that as soon as I can get some photoís up. 8Ē high and fast, fast, fast.

Stop typing and start doing!
Evan St.Clair

 
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A Life Lost
On 10/14/2008 Cat wrote in from United States  (98.210.nnn.nnn)

17 years old. What a shame, he had his whole life ahead of him.

I'm sorry for what his family & friends must be going through.

I know 66 has children.
Think about losing one of your kids.
To be so trite about a teen losing his life to scitching.
It just doesn't make sense.
There was no excuse for those comments.
You really are a mean-spirited person down to the core.

 
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skitch or ....
On 10/14/2008 skitch wrote in from United States  (68.116.nnn.nnn)

die trying.

 
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skitching
On 9/27/2008 skitch wrote in from United States  (75.91.nnn.nnn)

we celebrate the tradition of skitching here in joja during the annual "skitchfest"

wasn't skitch hitchock the father of modern day skitching?

 
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just bored
On 9/27/2008 herbn wrote in from United States  (67.83.nnn.nnn)

i havn't gotten past the first sentance of this post in weeks,i just reread and luckily no jail is involved.i guess the community service might be spreading the word on the evils of skitching.

 
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ah justice
On 9/27/2008 herbn wrote in from United States  (67.83.nnn.nnn)

i guess you can't punnish both of these dummies,actually did the driver of the car force the other kid to skitch? did he tie his hand to the car? if the idea was to teach others a lesson, hidding this particular "criminal" in a jail cell may not be the best use of tax payers dollars. maybe a skateboarding cross country tour of elementry school assemblies speaking on skateboard safety.

 
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Skitching accident kills helmet-less skater
On 9/7/2008 Pat Chewning wrote in from United States  (24.21.nnn.nnn)

Vancouver teen convicted in friend's death
by Holley Gilbert, The Oregonian
Thursday September 04, 2008, 3:12 PM
VANCOUVER -- A 17-year-old Vancouver boy was convicted today in the death last summer of a friend who fell under his sport utility vehicle and was run over.

Clark County Juvenile Court judge Judge Barbara Johnson convicted the teen of reckless endangerment, a gross misdemeanor, in the Aug. 19, 2007, death of Joseph S. Madison, 16, also of Vancouver. The Oregonian is not publishing the driver's name because he is a juvenile.

The boy's sentencing was set for Sept. 18. He could be sentenced to as many as 30 days in detention, 12 months of probation and 150 hours of community service.

Madison was not wearing a helmet when he was "skitching" -- riding his skateboard while holding onto the open rear window of his friend's SUV -- on a Salmon Creek-area street. When the SUV hit a bump, Madison fell and was run over by the vehicle's rear wheels.

Madison died of blunt head trauma, according to the Clark County Medical Examiner's office.

Deputy Prosecutor Jeff Holmes said creation of a dangerous situation was the issue at trial. In her decision, the judge said any reasonable person should have known it was risking serious harm to tow someone on a skateboard near a vehicle's rear wheels while on a city street traveling 25-30 mph, Holmes said.

Johnson acquitted the driver of carrying a person outside a vehicle, a traffic infraction.

-- Holley Gilbert; holleygilbert@news.oregonian.com

========= =====================================

Mayb e .... just maybe a helmet would have saved 2 lives here (the skitcher who died and the driver who has to live and pay for his mistake).

 
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sturdy helmet
On 8/20/2008 herbn wrote in from United States  (71.125.nnn.nnn)

i don't know, silverfish doesn't seem to work for me,i have trouble registering ect... s i'll just spout off here as usual."increased visability that helps you avoid the accident in the first place" that's a hard case to prove, the avoiding the accident thing,how often does that really happen? i can't speak for anybody else but accidents that involve actual head contact are really rare for me,,i can count them..six, in 34 years of ramp skateboarding ,bmx,street riding ,downhill mountainbiking including a couple years of expert level racing,two of those impacts resulted in stitches (but no a concussions) because i wasn't wearing a helmet. But on each of those impacts i was glad to have a helmet that was sturdier than it really absolutely needed to be. I may not be the poster boy for helmet usage but a bit of extra peripheral visability would not have avoided any accident i was involved in. Seems to me that paragliding helmets are made made like that so your view is wider and unobstructed while not crashing,there's a joke that the helmet is wearing you for protection in skydiving that sort of works for paragliding too.

 
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