“The game is a lot of fun for families from our schools,” said Michele Wilmoth, nurse manager of school health services. “At our booth, our nursing staff had the opportunity to connect with parents and children in the school community and provide some basic education about bike safety.”
A helmet prevents 88 percent of serious brain injuries related to bicycle collisions and falls. In 2010, 51,000 people were injured by not wearing a helmet, enough people to fill Nationwide Arena in Columbus more than 2 ½ times, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Lisa Pardi, injury prevention coordinator at Akron Children’s, offers 4 tips when trying to get your kids to wear their helmet:
- Always buy a helmet when purchasing a bike. “I taught my children that a helmet goes with the bike,” Pardi said. “They should be bought together and wearing a helmet should not be an option. Kids should even wear a helmet when they ride a tricycle to get accustomed to wearing it.”
- Proper fit is key. If the helmet doesn’t fit correctly, it won’t serve its full purpose. Measure your child’s head for approximate size and then have her try it on. Watch this Safe Kids video to learn how to fit a helmet in 3 easy steps.
You can also download the instructions in PDF format from the National Highway Safety Administration.
- Parents should also wear helmets. Children look up to their parents and mimic their actions.
- Praise your children when they have a helmet on. Many children feel self-conscious when wearing a helmet.
“Having your children wear a helmet while riding their bike, means you have one less thing to worry about this summer,” Pardi said. “The helmet will give you peace of mind, while protecting your child.”
Safe Kids Summit County, located at Akron Children’s Hospital, sells quality equipment at a discounted price, including bike helmets, life jackets and sets of knee and elbow pads. For more information, call 330-543-8990.