Saving Our Brains – Haley Loan, Viviana Jaimes, Dimanique Henderson and Savannah Gonzalez

We are the Cycle Masters and our mission is to reduce head injuries in the activity of cycling. We first started of with the mission of creating a helmet for BMX riders, but then decided to broaden our horizons so that more riding enthusiasts could benefit from our idea. Here at Cycle Masters we encourage the sport of cycling whether it be just for fun or sport, but we know that it needs to be done safely. It surprises many people to hear that cycling takes the top spot in sports for head injuries. Many people think that because cycling isn’t a contact sport it is less dangerous, but with so many external factors a rider can never be safe enough, but according to the Centers For Disease Control, wearing a bicycle helmet can reduce the risk of head trauma by up to 80%. That’s a lot of brains saved!

Because cycling accidents play a role in about 86,000 of the 447,000 sports-related head injuries annually, Screen Shot 2015-10-05 at 6.58.09 PMit is obvious as to why helmets are important. The majority of fatal cycling accidents are caused by intracranial hemorrhages and subdural hematomas (shown in the image to the right), usually from bicycle- car related crashes. Even though more and more people are starting to wear helmets, injuries to the head are still happening.

A helmet’s purpose it to protect riders in this type of collisions, but by just wearing a helmet doesn’t mean that you are protected. An effective helmet should be a smooth and rounded as possible to prevent snagging in a collision and a secure, but adjustable strap to keep the helmet firmly on the wearer’s head. A secure strap is one of the most important parts of a helmet because most collisions son’t just have one impact. If the helmet is not secure it will only protect the rider during the initial impact (ex: car) and not the secondary impact (ex: street). “Aero” tails for speed racing help to reduce drag but in crashes the tail can cause the helmetshelmet to be shoved sideways and leave the rider’s head unprotected. Facial injuries sustained during cycling accidents can largely result from the shattering of visors on helmets. It’s important for a helmet to have a shatter proof visor. Other important parts of bicycle helmets are the vents and the reflective design to make the helmet more conspicuous, because a rider is less likely to get hit if a driver can see them well. Sadly there is no helmet on the market that combines all of these aspects, but as stated earlier our mission at Cycle Masters is to create a helmet that does all of these things.

 

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