I have been training horses of all kinds for over 20 years. I ride western so helmets are not the norm. But a few years ago, I rode in a clinic where I was required to ride in a helmet. I read up on helmets and decided on a Troxel because of the excellent research and testing you have done. After the clinic, I figured I'd paid good money for this helmet, I might as well keep wearing it even though everyone at my barn questions this behavior.
It was just another day. I had been practicing riding bareback for weeks and was putting together a freestyle reining routine to be ridden bareback. It was raining so I chose to ride my little quarter horse mare in the indoor arena, which has concrete walls up about four feet and then pipe railing. I had actually forgotten to bring my helmet over from the barn and considered just getting on anyway. After all, I had ridden for years without a helmet. But I decided to take the short walk back to the barn through the rain to get my helmet that day.
Back in the arena, helmet on, practicing galloping bareback; the rain picked up and the sound hitting the metal roof spooked my horse. She picked up the pace which I wasn't ready for and I began to slide off. She was running straight for the concrete wall. The ground was muddy and slippery around the edge of the arena from the rain blowing in. She dove to the right, slipped a bit and I went flying off, splatting and sliding in the mud and my head cracked hard against the ground.
My horse stopped immediately. I rolled over to see that my head had missed hitting the concrete wall by about an inch. Luckily, even with hitting my helmeted head on the ground,I was fine other than a 12 inch deep bruise on my calf that showed up the next day and a washer load of very muddy clothes. I'll keep wearing my helmet and walk as far as I need to if I ever forget that helmet again.
Just another day could have been my last day. Thanks Troxel.
- February 15, 2012