When you’re a teenager, and your parents are old fuddy-duddies, like, in their 30s or 40s, there is no way that they (your parents) can possibly ever understand what it’s like to be a teenager, nor is there any way they can understand about coolness!
On the other hand, when you’re a parent and your teenage kids are self entitled know-it-alls, it’s a constant battle to get them to see sense, even when the most common of common sense is glaringly obvious.
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“Come on, Mom! How can I possibly look cool wearing a helmet? None of my buddies wear helmets, and if you make me wear it then I’ll never hear the end of it”.
“How cool will you look in a wheelchair for the rest of your life? Or, if you spent your life dependent on assisted care. Needing a carer to feed and clothe you, help you shower, or go to the toilet, every day! How cool would that be?”
I Love Helmets
Repeat after me, “I love helmets”. Now watch this video and understand why you need to repeat that every day. “I love helmets”.
Better still, put the video on a loop and watch it over and over for an hour. Watch the guy’s head as it hits the ground. Watch closely, and ask yourself “What if he hadn’t been wearing that helmet?” “What if that had been me?” Watch it. Loop it.
Most of us went through that stage of teenage life believing that we were the first in the history of the world to be experiencing what we were going through. Adolescence, caught somewhere between childhood and adulthood wanting to let the world know that we’re not a kid anymore, we can make decisions by ourselves.
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When we get a little older and reflect on those days, we can see things differently. Despite our parents being totally uncool, and our attempts to fit in so as to be accepted, what we didn’t notice at the time was that other kid who everyone liked but he didn’t do stuff to try to be accepted. He often went against the grain of teenage thought and did things because it was sensible, and still everyone liked him regardless.
If only we had noticed at the time that it was possible to call our own shots and tell our buddies that “I’m wearing the helmet because it’s safer and it makes good sense”. And there wouldn’t have been any teasing by the buddies because they would know that I was right and that I made good sense too.
All it needs from a teenager is to be mature enough to believe that 1) wearing a helmet is a good idea from a safety point of view, and 2) it doesn’t really matter if the helmet looks cool or not, and 3) who cares what the other kids think.
Leaders and Followers
There are 3 types of people in this world. The first are the leaders, their mindset is like “Okay, listen up folks, this is how it’s going to be!” The second type are the followers, they’re the ones who say “So, what’s happening?” And finally, the third type are the “Duh, what happened?” type of people.
RELATED: Is Skateboarding Dangerous?
Regardless of what type of person you are, you can be in command of your own coolness by leading the way and just wearing a helmet simply because you can see the sense in it. Tell your friends that you don’t care if they want to be losers.
You lead, and hopefully they will follow you. And, if there is any teasing or name calling, it will go away on its own when your friends see how determined you are. They’ll get used to it eventually.
Be A Trendsetter
Just because you’ve decided to wear a helmet skateboarding doesn’t mean you have to wear a helmet that looks like it would look good on your local bank manager or the school principal.
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Be totally rad, be yourself, show some personality. You need to learn how to look cool wearing a skateboard helmet. Or, better still, learn how to make your helmet look cool.
So, where can you get a cool helmet? You don’t. You get a regular helmet and turn it into a cool helmet. Actually, I think you’re probably looking at this from the wrong angle. The way to make a helmet look cool is to put it on your head.
Be silly, wear a pink Hello Kitty helmet!
Just do it. It will prove that you don’t care what anyone thinks.
Wear one of those kiddie Mohawk helmets, or toddler’s dinosaur style helmets.
Or, just buy a regular helmet and glue chicken feathers all over it.
Make a statement! “I am me. You are not me!“
There are so many things that you could do to make a statement as the trendsetter. Paint a target on the back of the helmet. Cover it with glitter.
Or, you could do none of the above. Just buy a nice helmet and wear it. The statement still being that you will not be discouraged by losers. Your closest friends will respect you and most likely get themselves helmets as well.
Of course, we can’t just agree to do something without coming up with all the excuses under the sun to not do something. Here are some of the excuses you’ll hear.
“Helmets are only for vert skateboarding because they go faster than street skaters.”
“Doing flip tricks and grinds on ledges and that sort of stuff isn’t dangerous so I don’t need a helmet.”
Really? Do you really believe that head injuries only come when there is speed involved?
Head injuries come from landing on your head, and how you fall.
Yo dude, listen up. This stuff is for real. Traumatic Brain Injury, often just referred to as TBI can be caused by simply falling and banging your head.
In extreme circumstances, TBI can bring on seizures, which can lead to epilepsy. The seizures can start immediately after the fall or it can suddenly come on months later. Head trauma is one of the most commonly identified reasons that patients develop epilepsy.
Why You Should Wear A Helmet
Try to understand the power of one. You can be the one. All it needs is one boy or one girl to stand up for themselves and say “I’m not going to be intimidated by my so-called friends. If they’re so dumb as to think that they are invincible, let them carry on being dumb.”
“And, those of you who call yourself my (real) friends, listen up, stop fooling yourself. Wear a skid lid.”
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When other kids ask why you wear a helmet, tell them it’s because you’re not stupid, and walk away. Next time you see them, still without a helmet, say something like ‘I see you still haven’t grown a brain’.
Oh, and that kid who always goes on and on about your helmet, name calling and so on, just keep in mind that old saying ‘empty vessels make the most noise’. The reason he doesn’t need a helmet is because he has no brain to protect.
Final words. Yo, Bro, Man up! BE THE CHANGE! Share this post with ALL your friends. Tell them to join the revolution and be part of THE CHANGE!
Don’t make the news for the wrong reason!
Parents, you need to be firm with your kids, teenagers especially. We were all teenagers once, so we know the pressures they are under from their peers. We also understand that no teenager wants to be the odd one out, and they definitely don’t want to be seen by their friends as a goody goody mommy’s boy.
However, there often comes a time when parents cannot take ‘no’ for an answer. Sometimes it can be beneficial to enlist the help of an older sibling or extended family member (cousin, uncle, etc.) who may be able to influence your rebellious teen that it’s time to take helmet wearing seriously.
Encourage your teenager to watch the Youtube videos above, and the one below. Maybe take him/her for a trip to your local Level 1 trauma center for a dose of reality.
As a last resort there are always threats using the carrot and stick approach. For example, if I ever see you skating without your helmet, then I will confiscate your skateboard for a week. Do it a second time and I’ll remove the wheels from your skateboard for a month.
Being a parent can be difficult at times, but sometimes you just have to lay down the law even if it means your kid will grumble and groan. Just do it. One day your kids might thank you for it.
For your younger kids, buy them a helmet when you buy their first skateboard. Make it such that the two go hand in hand. Forever.
Meet Aidan Schellings
If you need any further convincing about the need to start taking the wearing of a skateboard helmet seriously, then perhaps you can ask Aidan Schellings.
A Message To The Skateboarder
The coolest thing you can do is not be concerned what others think. Call your own shots!
SHARE THIS post everywhere. On Facebook, your email address book, SMS your phone contacts. Together we can encourage change!
Heads Don’t Bounce. Wear A Helmet!