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November 22, 2011


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It is tough. I hate wearing a helmet, but the truth is, it is not that bad, and it could possibly save you. I am wearing one now, but only because I got hurt this year. Bad. Really bad. I was really wound up on a vulcan attempt, and accidentally, got hooked in. I basically hit the side of my right zygoma (cheekbone) on my RDM, and crushed it in. A few centimeters to the right of impact, and I could have checked out. A few centimeters to the left I could have lost my sight. I few more inches to the left and I would have missed the mast, and I would have landed on top of my expensive carbon boom and broke it (again..done that). To the right, I would have just had a nice catapult splash and laughed it off. As it was, I almost lost my livelihood and means of supporting my family as I currently do. I have played it over and over in my mind. It has been a tough recovery, but I lucked out in the end.

I remember when pro hockey, cyclists, and skateboarders all did not wear helmets. Now, it is the norm. I am not suggesting everyone needs to do it. I am trying hard to make myself wear mine. I am embarrassed the accident happened to me. I know it takes some serious lack of technique or focus to pull off what I did, but nobody can fault me on my effort. I was going all out, as I have for a while now, trying to land this move. Yes, I have had ABK instruction, seen all the videos, and asked plenty of freestylers for advice. Accidents happen. I was given a second chance, and a helmet still may not save me. But as more experienced riders have serious accidents (and some possibly passing away), I think it does make sense when the conditions warrant. I will just have to get over my vanity and self consciousness. I will keep pulling the trigger, and I will land one soon. Looping is next. I might as well improve my odds of not getting seriously injured by wearing a skull cap. I definitely am not giving up.

Hey I think wearing a helmet is better than "not that bad"...once my sail size gets into the 4's I always wear one, and 5 meter in waves or hectic conditions (or winter...I think they help with warmth) my brain is in a bucket.

protect thy coconut. Happy Thanksgiving puffins and Wind chimps............jh

Since I sail alone most of the time and have 3 children to raise a helmet is now standard issue. Might even look as cool as the goofy hat I was wearing.

Graham Ezzy rocks the helmet. Then again he could rock muumuu and still be a bad ass.

Most people now wear helmets for cycling, skiing, etc. It's just about gotten to the point where NOT wearing a helmet is not cool. Personally, I never understood the whole thing about helmets being uncool. I guess I am terminally uncool, but I've always liked "helmet sports".

I started wearing a helmet for windsurfing to keep the sun radiation off of my bald head at my dermatologist's request. Too many sun-damaged spots have been removed over the years and hats are a pain.

Now I just wear it as a matter of course. The Gath helmets are pretty cool, IMO. Why not be safe, just in case?

I am in total agreement, for obvious reasons (my late beloved Joe's passing), of wearing a helmet -- at least in high-wind or extreme conditions. More and more windsurfers are wearing them!


In pro windsurfing there is definitely an anti helmet bias. Come to think of it, one of the last sports to hold out against helmets in top competition. Of course, everyone then emulates. Ironically, the biggest danger is hitting or getting tangled in your own equipment, something surfers but not wakeboarders or snowboarders truly face. Where I windsurf a neoprene or neil pryde vest and protech helmet is standard. The only pro I know of that makes a point of wearing a helmet is Graham Ezzy. When it's over 20 knots the helmet goes on.

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