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KelpFries

Mandatory Helmet for Young Children?

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I'm just starting out learning to skate with the intention of playing some hockey, only been learning for about 6 months now. My 10 year old daughter got me into it after her grandparents took her ice skating and she got bit by the bug and asked me for skating lessons. I myself look like a complete tool every time I go skating because I wear all my equipment with the exception of shoulder pads, but I put on the hockey pants, knee pads, elbows pads and what I feel is the most important safety gear, my helmet. I will NOT allow my 10 year daughter on the ice without her helmet, knee pads and elbow pads. She also wears a padded short ensemble. Until she's proficient at skating, those are the rules.

The other day, we're at the rink having a skate around, practicing some things, crossovers and the like, and there are only 4 other people on the rink, 3 kids and what I assume was their mother. As my daughter and I are doing our thing at one end of the ice I see one of the kids, probably about 10 or 11, skating close to us, wobbling and fumbling, then all of a sudden his feet came out from under him and he hit the ice head first, crack! No helmet, no protective gear of any kind whatsoever. The kid immediately starts screaming and he's got a gash on the left side of his forehead that is bleeding quite profusely. I wouldn't be surprised if the kid had a concussion, his head hit the ice HARD! Me and one of the guys from the proshop had to walk the kid off the ice, he couldn't even stand up on his own.

So I ask you, in all seriousness, knowing how dangerous it can be to fall on the ice when you cannot skate, why is some form of head protection not mandatory at ice rinks for minors? You know damn well that the parents aren't smart enough to figure out that ice is slippery and hard and really REALLY hurts when you fall on it, so why don't rinks have a head protection rule for minors? Even if it's a bike helmet, something?

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Considering all the lawsuits, I ask myself the same thing.  Surprised insurance doesn't mandate it.  My son was skating with a kid he met at public skate a couple years ago and that kid went down and smacked his temple.  

My son has been in full gear all along at public skate.  One, it helped him develop because when he fell he just got back up and wasn't afraid to try things.  Two, it protects him from other people flying around.  Kid on his team last year was clobbered by an older kid flying around not looking where he was going.  He had gear on but still was shaken up pretty badly.  The other day was the first time without full gear for my son, but he has to wear helmet, elbow pads, and gloves and will for quite a while.

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4 rinks around me and only the 1 rink which is a township owned and run rink requires a helmet for minors, the other 3 rinks have no rules for any kind of protection.

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