The equine lifestyle affords a healthy and active state for all ages with all styles of riding. When you are with your horses everyday it is easy to become complacent and forget how big, powerful and quick reacting they can be. These resources will help you establish sound practices so you and your horses can stay safe and sound!
Check out our section on Road Safety under the Trails & Recreation section of our website!
The importance of wearing a helmet cannot be stressed enough! A head injury can change not only your life but the lives of those who love you. Don’t let vanity get in the way of using safety equipment. Riders4Helmets is an excellent resource for information on helmets and helmet use.
What is a Concussion?
Concussion, a type of traumatic brain injury, is caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head. Concussions can also occur from a blow to the body that causes the head and brain to move quickly back and forth— causing the brain to bounce around or twist within the skull. This sudden movement of the brain can cause stretching and tearing of brain cells, damaging the cells and creating chemical changes in the brain
According to the Equestrian Medical Safety Association riders are more likely to suffer traumatic brain injury (ranging from concussion to life-threatening) than athletes who play rugby, football, boxing or soccer, or even race motorcycles – high-impact sports in their own rights, each with extremely high concussion rates.
The EMSA states that a fall from 60 cm can cause permanent brain damage and a human skull can be shattered by an impact of only 7-10 km/hour… and horses are able to gallop at speeds up to 65 km/hour. Bear in mind too, that athletes who have suffered a single head injury are 40 per cent more likely to suffer subsequent head injuries.
Recognition and proper management of concussions when they first occur can help prevent further injury or even death.
The Canadian Concussion Collaborative is composed of 9 national health and sport organizations focused on creating synergy between organizations to improve education and implementation of best practices for the prevention and management of concussions. Two important recommendations have been put forth by the Canadian Concussion Collaborative, including;
- Organizations responsible for operating, regulating or planning sport and sporting events with a risk of concussion should be required to develop/adapt and implement a concussion management protocol based on current best practices.
- In situations where timely and sufficient availability of medical resources and/or trained and licensed health care professionals qualified for concussion management are not available, health professionals from various disciplines should work together to improve concussion management outcomes by facilitating access to medical resources and relevant expertise where appropriate.
Visit this link for details on the current recommendations of the Canadian Concussion Collaborative.
There are a number of resourceful links associated with current best practices for concussion education and management that are available:
Additional Concussion Resources:
Red Flags Concussion Chart
Return to Learn Zones
Return to Play Guidelines
BRI Concussion handbook 2015 – Download