Riding hats...... Why aren't they wearing them?!?!

Elvis

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I always ride with a hat on these days. There have been times in the past where I haven't-usually a quick trip down to the field. Which I look back on now and think I was probably being a little silly.
And in all honesty I can't understand why others choose to ride without a hat on, but that's my problem not theirs. I may not agree with them but I'd defend their right to do it.

Although I must admit there is one girl who regularly posts photos of her riding without a hat, often with the horse misbehaving, or stopping at fences, her nearly falling off etc and she's wearing a cap in every photo, there is a small part of me that thinks if you've bothered to put a cap on you might as well have put a riding hat on!
 

SaddleUpSin

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Personally, I agree with... well EVERYONE!
Everyone should have a choice, but for Health and Safety reasons, choosing a hat is clearly the better option over no hat.
As in everything it has its pros and cons and it comes down to what you value you most, comfort and appearance or safety and reassurance.
Also the horse you ride and the competence of the rider plays a big part in the choice. I know someone who would ride their pony bareback, bridleless and without a hat and the pony wouldn't do anything to put her in any danger or hurt her and she is an absolutely amazing riding, her side doesn't move at all in canter, bareback and she's only 13. Its her own horse and her own responsibility and I wouldn't tell her otherwise.
But on a horse prone to bad behaviour, or a horse that is unfamiliar to the rider I can never understand why you wouldn't wear a hat. Or a less experienced rider.
Also, many places require you wear a hat in their arenas and I believe that it should be followed.

Its a can of worms, but each to their own, think of other people and whether its worth the risk before deciding to wear a hat or not! :)
 

ebonyallen

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Having been dragged down the road by my head my hat saved my life, the trouble is they think it will always happen to someone else stupid is not the word, We have a so called trainer near us who also runs a livery yard and she NEVER wears a hat, she must be far to good for that, and of course what happens is all the teenagers think it is not cool to wear one and so they don't, and she does not say anything makes me so mad,
 

ILuvCowparsely

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I'm getting so fed up of seeing young riders riding without riding hats, both at the yard and on selfies on facebook. When I was learning how to ride, if we took our hats off in lessons, for whatever reason, we were thrown out! They are there for a reason. I won't say I'll laugh when one of them falls off and seriously hurts themselves but I will have no sympathy whatsoever.
It appears that it is more important for kids/ young riders to look good rather than be safe. Well at least they'll look pretty for the coroner! Sorry rant over.

I agree though so many don't like to mess their hair or their make up, they like wind in their hair or think its cool to ride without, what ever the reason,

But they are willing to risk their head smashing on the tarmac, ending up in a wheelchair or dead. Not being able to talk only using a speech keyboard. All because she thought it was cool to get on her boyfriends motorbike without a helmet.:( Coming off a horse onto tarmac is no difference.

Maybe they ought to have dvd clips on what happens when skull hits the concrete, like they do with commercials texting when driving

"warning graphic" clip https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0LCmStIw9E
 
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Capriole

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Doen't bother me a great deal, either way tbh. I don't ride without a hat myself and I don't (wouldn't) ride with someone who doesn't wear a hat, but other than that, I think knock yourself out (no pun intended). But, I had to comment on this...

Also the horse you ride and the competence of the rider plays a big part in the choice. I know someone who would ride their pony bareback, bridleless and without a hat and the pony wouldn't do anything to put her in any danger or hurt her and she is an absolutely amazing riding, her side doesn't move at all in canter, bareback and she's only 13. Its her own horse and her own responsibility and I wouldn't tell her otherwise.
But on a horse prone to bad behaviour, or a horse that is unfamiliar to the rider I can never understand why you wouldn't wear a hat. Or a less experienced rider.


This I don't agree with. Whether you believe the horse would do anything to hurt you or not, ***** happens. Maybe the horse wouldn't ever do something deliberately, but it might do something unforseen, like my neighbours horse, who dropped dead underneath her.

If you (this is now generally, not specifically) don't want to wear a hat, don't wear one, but don't kid yourself that Snookum's wouldn't do anything to hurt you.
 

Megibo

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This really.

Life is too short to get hung up on what other people are doing. If you aren't directly responsible for these kids, then one has to question the parents/guardians who let them do this.

As for the argument that then usually follows - '..more stress on hospitals and emergency services etc etc' you might as well rant at all the smokers, alcoholics and people with weight problems.

Live and let live, and if they want to chance it then let them get on with it.

err, this!
 

Cortez

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I don't wear a hat, but I don't object if anyone wants to. Probably the majority of riders in the world don't wear safety hats (as someone rather eloquently mentioned earlier on); wearing a hat doesn't mean you are "safe", and not wearing one doesn't automatically mean you are going to fall off.
 

ester

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It's difficult with teenagers and their immature prefrontal cortices and warped perceptions of risk :p


That's interesting given the discussion I heard earlier in the week about the effects of lack of sleep on the frontal lobes (I think) reducing ethical morality and increasing incidences of suicide - ie that people don't think about others because they can't.
 

SaddleUpSin

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~Snip~
This I don't agree with. Whether you believe the horse would do anything to hurt you or not, ***** happens. Maybe the horse wouldn't ever do something deliberately, but it might do something unforseen, like my neighbours horse, who dropped dead underneath her.

If you (this is now generally, not specifically) don't want to wear a hat, don't wear one, but don't kid yourself that Snookum's wouldn't do anything to hurt you.

Oh god that must have been horrible for her! The point I was making though, was that for her she feels like it is worth the risk as she is comfortable and trusts the horse (small pony) and vice versa.


In the end, even just handling horses is very dangerous. You can be killed or seriously injured by them without even being on their back, so it's down to the owner to decide whether they want to take the risk, if it doesn't affect others around them.
 

Capriole

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It was pretty horrible by all accounts, yes. She'd only minutes before told him off for being lazy and I believe, given him a tap with her whip to encourage him forwards. Next thing he'd dropped like a stone. So there was some guilt there too.
 

SaddleUpSin

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It was pretty horrible by all accounts, yes. She'd only minutes before told him off for being lazy and I believe, given him a tap with her whip to encourage him forwards. Next thing he'd dropped like a stone. So there was some guilt there too.

Oh dear! Did you ever find out why? Thats such a horrible thing to happen
 

Polar Bear9

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I personally would never get on without a hat (actually I have but in America in western tack if that makes any difference) but if other people want to then its their choice. When I was a child my ponies were at a large livery/ riding school and if you were seen without a hat you would get severely told off. Theres a little voice in the back of my head that whispers about natural selection at work when I see people with no hat. But that said, if a responsible adult wants to ride without a hat on their own property then its their choice, they know the risks. If a responsible adult allows their child to ride without a hat then that is also their choice and it will be them who will suffer if something happens to their child.
Similarly I wouldn't be here typing this today if I hadn't been wearing a body protector when I came of a pony aged 10 but I never wear one now despite knowing the risk.

What does annoy me is the setting of bad examples. A large competition centre near me used to have professional dressage riders on site who would ride with no hats. That in itself is fine. What used to bother me was when they did it in the school next to where unaffiliated showjumping was running with kids on ponies everywhere. To me that is setting a very bad example.
 

ILuvCowparsely

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wearing a hat doesn't mean you are "safe", and not wearing one doesn't automatically mean you are going to fall off.

What an odd thing to say :confused:

Funny this that is what a my livery's sons best friend said about seat belts when he started driving. Three years after he collided with a bridge in 2004 (not wearing a belt) he was 25 and now in a Bucks cemetery.

Well your a damn site safer with a hat than without in the event of a fall from a horse or a bike.

Not wearing them:! No it doesn't mean your going to automatically fall off. If people want to risk it that is their choice, but remember the chance or you having brain damage or worst "If" you do is higher than if you wear one. **** happens people fall from bikes and horses all the time every day of the week.


I want to lessen the chance of my head being split open like a watermelon by wearing a hat when I ride, and if that means spoiling my hair or make up or not being cool so be it, IMO lying in a cemetery or crematorium isn't cool either and I wont be needing to worry about my make up or hair then will I?.

After seeing "name withheld" coming off her bf's bike in a freak accident and ending up in a wheelchair and cannot talk unless through a keyboard I could not do this top my family. This still haunts me and this happened in 1981.



Seatbelts save life's in a car a hat could save your life on a horse
 
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EquestrianFairy

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I actually just watched a video of a horse for sale on the book of faces and the guy was jumping 1m 40 with no hat.
Suffice to say, it made me wonder if he is of sane mind.
 

benson21

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Its all very well people saying that they trust their horse, so no need for a hat, but an accident wont always be the horses fault!! My horse was behaving perfectly, just hacking home for his tea, and hadnt put a foot wrong. It was the car driver that was speeding, driving dangerously when he hit us. I was wearing a hat, so had no head injuries, but if I hadnt been wearing one, god only knows what i would of been like now.
 

RunToEarth

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To be honest this debate has been trotted out again and again and again.

Yes you are safer with a hat than without, yes all horses have the ability to be unpredictable, yes some people are just idiots (with or without hats.) But people have the right to choose - debating their choice isn't going to change that.
 

pansymouse

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Because it's my taxes that will pay for their treatment and rehabilitation and resent them being squandered on people who undertake dangerous activities knowingly failing to take basic risk mitigation.
 

RunToEarth

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Because it's my taxes that will pay for their treatment and rehabilitation and resent them being squandered on people who undertake dangerous activities knowingly failing to take basic risk mitigation.

So - my taxes are also going towards the NHS funding health care for people who eat, drink and smoke themselves to death - but I have better things to trouble myself over.
 

pip6

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To me not to wear one is being very selfish. It's not about the wearer, but the poor people who have to cope with a dead or damaged (worse than if a hat had been worn) loved one. Quoting cowboys is pointless, it has been ingrained in their ethos for hundreds of years. I watch bull riding on the tv, & over the past 5 years it has gone from most of the riders wearing regular cowboy hats to now most wear crash hats with full-face guards with gum shields. I don't think their prowess has changed, they just want to live & not be vegetables (from falling onto sand, it does not protect you, think of the forces a horse and height can generate) relying on family for feeding & care. I respect myself enough, & love my family enough to take every reasonable precaution when I ride to come back in one piece. Kids think they are immortal, it is up to high profile riders to show it is not an admission of nerves or incompetence, but showing respect for self & others that results in wearing a hat. Nothing can protect against all accidents, but you owe it to those you love to swing the odds in your favour. Yes I also wear hi-viz. That's also motivated by a love for my horse & not wanting to see her injured if there is any way to avoid it.
 

maccachic

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To be honest this debate has been trotted out again and again and again.

Yes you are safer with a hat than without, yes all horses have the ability to be unpredictable, yes some people are just idiots (with or without hats.) But people have the right to choose - debating their choice isn't going to change that.

I disagree with that I read forums to learn things and challenge my thinking, discussions like this may make someone take another look at their opinion's. Esp as they realise "their choice" may affect others if they are so badly brain damaged they cannot care for themselves, and I realise this may still happen with a helmet on but the risks are a lot higher without one.
 

Debz87

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Hello everyone. I always wore a hat whilst riding and when I went to work as assistant trainer at a few yards I was encouraged to not wear a hat, or wear a baseball cap (I should point out this on western training yards in the UK)
I was unlucky enough years ago to have an accident whilst show jumping to get kicked in the face and although I had my riding hat on I managed to get a cracked cheekbone in two places and a nice few scars under my eye and across the bridge of my nose where the shoe made contact, if I hadn't of been wearing a hat I don't know if the accident would have been worse but I suffered for a long time after the accident and felt glad I was wearing a hat.
I now start young horses and school various horses for owners and more often than not most yards request you wear a hat whilst mounted and I do feel safer wearing a hat.
I do show in western classes in a stetson but most clinics and warm up arenas require you to wear a riding hat.
One trainer I worked for told me it didn't look professional for me to be wearing a hard hat during a warm up at a show, I was pretty annoyed as I was struggling to keep my stetson on as it was windy and no amount of hair pins, tape or hairspray were going to help, so I constantly felt distracted by trying to keep my hand on so I felt the safest option was to get a hard hat on.
I have since worked on RDA riding schools and with children and I felt it was really important to set a good example and wore one the whole time for everything from leading the kids around to lungeing.....
I really don't mind wearing a hard hat and don't mind the hat hair lol but on a serious note I do feel that hard hats should be enforced to some extent although I would still like the option to not wear one for competition (western) as it does alter the overall appearance, however if I was riding a young horse in a class for the first time I would probably opt to wear a hat for my own safety.
At the end of the day as others have pointed out, everybody has a choice and you shouldn't be talked down to whether you wear a hat or you don't, it's up to the person providing they are legally old enough to make the decision.
 
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