Thought I Didn't Need a Helmet! by Shelley
I'm 54 now and this happened nearly 20 years ago but forever changed my mind about wearing a helmet. I speak from the mindset of the "good old days" when nobody wore helmets except when jumping. I took a 10 year break from riding then started back and was leasing a quiet school horse from a nearby stable. I figured I was "only" hacking so who needs a helmet? I was cantering around the ring no problem when suddenly the horse stopped dead and did a nasty 180 deg spin. I flew off and my head connected with the fence. I staggered into the barn holding my head with blood pouring through my hands; I was driven to a nearby hospital where I had 20 stitches placed in my forehead just above the hairline. I was not unconscious at any time but the experience was certainly an eye-opener and taught me the lesson of a lifetime. I immediately thought THAT'S IT - NEVER AGAIN WILL I RIDE WITHOUT A HELMET (and I haven't)!
Enough said. Sadly, when I've told this story to some people they say - "Gee that's awful but nothing like that's ever happened to me." My answer is - DON'T WAIT UNTIL IT DOES! You may not be lucky enough to have a second chance.
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