Use your noodle and protect your noggin – on the other words: wear a ski helmet!

Looking for Ski helmets for Kids? Read my recommendations.

I witnessed my 5-year-old to ski off the slope and take a big tumble into the trees today, and while my heart missed a couple of beats, my son was fine, and after a short scare even he was able to say “I’m glad I had a helmet on!”.

Everybody hasn’t been as lucky as my son this season in the South-West Colorado. The ski season has been going on only for a month, but there are several accidents and even deaths just in the two resorts closest to us (Purgatory and Telluride). In many of the cases a helmet might have saved the person from death or permanent injury. The skier’s skill level unfortunately does not make not wearing a helmet any smarter choice. Actually, the better skiers tend to do riskiers stunts, and most of the ski deaths are of skilled skiers.

According to SkiHelmets.com only “15% to 24% of all skiers and snowboarders wear a helmet when they are on the slopes”.

Today, January 19th, started the National Ski Areas Association’s National Safety Awareness Week, and while my children were told already last week that on their tomorrow’s class they will be covering the mountain safety issues, today I saw several Purgatory ( Durango Mountain Resort)ski school teachers without an essential ski accessory: the helmet.

I asked one of the ski school teachers who wasn’t wearing a helmet, what was her opinion of wearing it or educating the ski school students about it. She believed it was everyone’s own choice, and the parents’ own choice, and she didn’t feel like she should educate the parents nor children about adding skiing safety by using a helmet. “My kids wear them, and my husband, but I have been skiing for 30 years, and I don’t need one” was her answer to her own family’s personal choices.

Frankly, I couldn’t believe what I was hearing, from a several season ski school teacher, in a ski resort, which was voted “the best ski resort to go with kids” by Ski Magazine. As any parent knows, children need role models and the influence of teachers and peers is huge, especially on younger children. Simply by wearing a helmet, ski school teachers could encourage children wearing one too.

A moment later I talked to a mountain safety skier, who was wearing a helmet and thanked him for being a great example for children, and asked does the Purgatory Mountain Safety encourage children to wear ski helmets. He said that they do anything that they can do to enhance the safety on the mountain, and being an example to younger riders. Personally he praises kids who are skiing safe and respecting other skiers. Mountain safety and ski patrol also give out free hot chocolate coupons for children and teens, who demonstrate safety awareness and positive attitude.

At least there are people who are caring about teaching the right safety measures to children at the mountain, but getting two totally different kind of answers from people working at the same resort, did make me wonder what the real safety policy is. I will investigate more, and interview more people at Purg during this winter, and I would love to hear how children’s mountain safety is taken into consideration in other ski resorts.

Ps. I will be posting tips how to get your child to wear a helmet on Monday, if you have great tips, leave me a note!

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