A year and a half ago I was riding in our arena and my horse spooked when she stepped in a puddle...at a walk ...but jumped so far sideways that my body got thrown to the left while she went to the right. My foot got caught in iron and so I hit the ground in a V. That threw my head with even more momentum into the ground than if I'd just landed flat. I got the wind knocked out of me, broke a rib and fractured a vertebrae but I had my Troxel Helmet on and other than being a little rattled, my head survived! Someone 30 yards away heard the whack of my helmet onto the ground & came running to help. I'm certain my skull would have been fractured had I not been wearing it. I know it wasn't a huge riding adventure or high jumps or anything. It was just a leisurely stroll at home. Something I fear too many people think is just safe so they don't reach for the helmet even though they might if they were going on a trail or something they considered more dangerous. Just last week we lost a local rider who went out on the trail alone without a helmet. For me it's a helmet...every time!!!
I used to grab my helmet, tote it down to the arena, do my ground work and put it on before I mounted. I've gotten lazy and I don't like the extra item in my hands so awhile back I started putting t it on my head to "hold" it and now it's a habit that includes putting it on & closing the chin strap in the tack room.
I also have to say that Troxel's exchange policy was amazing. I sent in the helmet I was wearing during my accident and for a small fee they sent me a new one. I was so impressed that when it came time to buy a velvet show helmet, there was not even a question about what brand I would buy...it's Troxel all the way for me!