Are Helmets Just A Distraction From The Bigger Issue? | The GCN Show 308

Are Helmets Just A Distraction From The Bigger Issue? | The GCN Show 308


– From Mount Glorious in South
East Queensland, Australia, welcome to the GCN Show. – Hello, and welcome to the GCN Show, brought to you by our friends at Wiggle. – Now coming up, are bike helmets actually just a distraction from the bigger issue? We talk to one of the scientists behind the most quoted pieces of
research on the subject. – Yeah, we have cycling shorts
in Cycling Shorts for once, a giant bike, literally, a giant bike, and news of more new bike
paths in the Netherlands. – Well, you can never have too
many bike paths, I suppose. – Nope, clearly. (upbeat electronic music) (air rushing) (heavy metal pounding) This week in the world of cycling, we learned that sometimes technique just doesn’t really matter. Here is top cross rider Beth
Crumpton showing that momentum, and a little bit of luck,
is all you really need. – [Woman] Go on, Beth! – [Simon] Ooh! Hoo hoo, look at that!
– That’s what I’m saying. You never taught me that
descending technique, you decided to go.
– Well, that is unorthodox, Emma, definitely, can we
just rewind a little bit? Just, yup, but hold it there. Look at that pose. – [Emma] That takes a
lot of core strength. And a lot of gumption I would say. – Well, it does look like
a yoga pose, doesn’t it? Look at those feet. – What’s it, flying fish or something? – Genius, not there, that was fantastic. – We also learnt from
cyclocross what happens if you have momentum but no luck. (upbeat piano music) (tire crashing) (bike crashing) – Ooh, that’s Mike Exley there, getting it a little bit wrong. Now we also learned this week that one of the hottest debates in cycling– – Oh, it’s sock links
because you were bleeding? – No, not a sock link this week, actually, and then whether or not we should have to wear helmets when riding around town has been well and truly stoked once again. But there’s a growing
feeling that underneath this increasingly bitter argument, perhaps we’re just being
distracted from a bigger issue. A decade ago, a academic
based at Bath University here in the UK conducted a piece of research that looked
into the behavior patterns of car drivers in relation to cyclists. And specifically, it looked into whether the behavior changes depending on whether the cyclist was wearing
normal clothes or Lycra, whether they were male or female, or whether they were
wearing a helmet or not. – The take home from it was
that drivers do give more room when they’re overtaken to riders
that look less experienced, whilst the more
experienced-looking riders, they pass far closer. So people that are
wearing Lycra or a helmet. – Yeah, now much of that
research has been backed up by other people time and again,
but the helmet part has not. Now apparently, no further
studies have been carried out, but a team of Australian
researchers actually looked into Walker’s original data set and they concluded something different. They concluded that car
drivers did not pass closely to cyclists who were wearing helmets. – Since then, though, the
author of the original study has published a rebuttal in which he says that the Australian team changed their interpretation of the data. So going from drivers pass
closer to drivers pass close. Now therefore the original
conclusion is still valid. Cyclists that wear helmets
are treated differently and in a way that poses more
of a risk to their safety. – Yeah, interesting. Now we caught up with Dr.
Walker, let’s hear from him now. – When we did the first study
and we found that drivers appear to be getting closer
when I wore a helmet, there were two possible
explanations that came up. So the first was the one
that I hoped wasn’t true, which is maybe people were thinking, he’s got a helmet on,
if I hit him, it’s okay. Or they were taking the helmet as a sign of a skilled, experienced rider. So the second study we did was actually deliberately testing that. We had my colleague riding
around either looking very experienced, like
full-on racing gear, or dressed as a real novice cyclist with novice cyclist
written across his back, just to try and get that message across. And we found that that made
no difference whatsoever. – Really?
– Yeah, so that suggests that actually maybe people
weren’t taking the outfit as a sign of experience and
being kind to the novice, maybe they actually were getting closer when I wore the helmet
because, regrettably, they thought maybe it
doesn’t matter too much. – Crikey, so I guess to
a certain extent there is a slight positive here
in that drivers do change their behavior depending
on what they’re seeing, but then the downside is
that some of that behavior is putting the cyclist at
increased risk, isn’t it? – Yeah, we saw that again
in the second study as well, where one of the outfits
we tested suggested that, had a vest with writing
on the back suggesting that the journey was being video recorded, and that was the only outfit
that made any difference. – Really?
– And got you a bit more space. So, again, it suggests
that drivers are capable of picking things up and responding, but maybe not in the way that we’d want. – It kinda feel a little bit
like maybe we as cyclists are in catch-22 at the moment
in that if we take steps to try to improve our personal safety like wearing a helmet or
wearing high-vis, then actually, it might be having the opposite effect to the one that we actually desiring. What can we do, do you think, to actually try and improve the situation? – Probably the best thing is to try and get at the root of the problem. There’s several ways you
might get hurt as as cyclist. You might lose it on bend, on a wet road, which I’ve done quite recently. But that’s probably not going to kill me or seriously injure me. What’s more likely to be a genuine threat to my life is dangerous motoring. That big, heavy vehicles cutting in on me. Cutting across me without
looking, in the case of HTVs. So, if you want to fix that problem, you want to fix the real problem that actually threatens you. A helmet’s not going to do that. What is going to do it
is removing the danger. So, as a cyclist, we can’t
just magically wave a wand and make trucks disappear
out of city centers or wave a wand and make
drivers put their phones down. But what we can do is push
our local authorities, push our counselors, push
our elected representatives, to show them that this is
serious and they’re presiding over a system that isn’t
fundamentally safe, and that there are dangers
in our streets that could be taken away if they were
taken a bit more seriously. – And so what might you
envisage then as the next steps for a counselor or an authority to do? It would be segregated by paths, I guess. So you separate cyclists from the dangers or would it be trying to
remove the trucks from cities? I mean, that would be a fairly
thrusting measure, I guess. – Well, it’s a bit of everything, so. There’s definitely some physical stuff. If we’ve got physically separated space with the motor vehicles over
there, they can’t hurt you. It doesn’t require all
the drivers in the country to buy into the idea that
they need to be safe. So that’s kinda the gold standard, but we’re never gonna have
that everywhere, you know? You and I commute in on rural roads. We can’t have physically segregated space all through the countryside,
all through the entire nation. So we also need changes
in driver behavior. As that probably means, a
greater chance of being caught and punished if you are an
aggressive, dangerous driver. It probably means that people need to get the message that
it’s not okay to speed. It’s not okay to drive while distracted. So we need fundamental
changes in our city streets but also in the way people drive. – What a fascinating bogan. Quite in the right name being Walker because actually seems
like he cycles a lot. In fact, he even won the
NorthCape4000 this year. – He did, yeah, the ultra-endurance race. Also important to note, he’s got no agenda in the helmet debate. He said he wears a helmet when he rides his bike recreationally but he doesn’t always wear one
when he’s riding around town. So there you go, he’s
got a foot in both camps. Anyway, make sure you get involved in the comments section down below. Let us know what you think
about this particular issue. Are helmets distracting
us from the bigger issue or should we focus on our
own personal safety first? Let us know in the comments section. (upbeat electronic music) It’s time now for your Weekly Inspiration. It’s that part of the show where we get to go through some of the amazing photos that you’ve sent in over the last week. And we also get to give out some vouchers courtesy of Wiggle. Third place gets 50 pounds,
second place gets 75 pounds, and first place gets a
whopping 100 pound voucher, which is pretty cool. – Yup, now in third place this
week we got UK-based Nick Cox who took this photo when he
was out in Alcudia in Mallorca. – [Simon] How do you say it? – [Emma] Alcudia or Mallorca? – Okay, anyway, that is a
cracker of a photo, look at that. You know what, particularly
inspiring for me, not just because we can
actually see the sun which I haven’t seen for a few days now, but also because it’s
one of those destinations for European cyclists that’s just so easy to get to, isn’t it? And the roads are so
good I just gotta think, ah, I could just go over there. – Yeah, it doesn’t take long to get there. So warm, the coffee is so good. – Yeah, almost feel, actually, we shouldn’t give Nick a 50 pound voucher ’cause he’s already had a
lot of riding in Mallorca. He doesn’t need it any better. But, anyway, there we go, Nick. – Lucky, Nick. – We realized that too late. Ah, right, second place
we’ve got this sent in by Sam Buchli, is that right? – [Emma] That was right, yeah. – [Simon] Yeah, okay, who is
based in Bern in Switzerland. And now this one, I think,
is pretty good for now, because that looks like
a very wintry shot. And it’s still inspiring
me to get out and ride. – [Emma] Super fast the edge
he is, looks like home for me. – [Simon] Yeah, is it colder than it here? – [Emma] Yeah, it’s flipping freezing. – Is it–
– Frosty, frozen mist that hangs on the hilltops
and in the valleys. – Oh, you make it sound quite nice, actually.
– It looks pretty, but it’s really cold. – Yeah, anyway, fair play there. So, Sam, congratulations, 75 pounds of Wiggle vouchers over to you. (drum rolling)
And then the winner. (cymbals crashing)
– Finally, proposition winning this week’s inspirational
photo competition, we have Roland who was riding
the second Torino-Nice Rally, and this is taken on the
Colle del Collombardo which is apparently a 2.2K off-road climb somewhere between Torino and Nice. – [Simon] That looks pretty
darn cool, doesn’t it? Now inspiration perhaps not to get out and ride your bike just now, but maybe to start planning
stuff for next year. That looks wicked, doesn’t it? – [Emma] It does look pretty cool. – Yeah, fair play, well, there we go. 100 pound Wiggle voucher winging its way over to you as well. If you wanna get stuck in to
next week’s Weekly Inspiration, then all you gotta do is either submit an inspirational riding
photo to our uploader, the link to which in
the description below, or on Instagram, which
is you can see a couple of these have come from this week. The hashtag is #gcninspiration. (upbeat bugle music) (spring vibrating) – It’s now time for Cycling Shorts. – We start Cycling Shorts
this week with some news of actual cycling shorts,
which is kinda nice, because Team Sky have
unveiled their 2019 kit for what will be their 10th season, can you believe it?
– Wow. Time’s gone pretty quick, isn’t it? Anyway, this year they
will be back in black. Not exclusively black, it’s
like a black, navy blue fade which, I gotta say, I’m quite
a fan of a fade these days. It’s like an 80s thing coming back. Anyway, Assos have also
signed on as kit partners to Team Dimension Data,
although we haven’t actually seen a sneak
peek of that new kit yet. – So Team Dimension Data going full Swiss on both kit and bikes next year, it seems. In other news, Italian brand 3T were the victims of a
robbery, unfortunately, with thieves apparently drilling through a one meter thick brick wall
to gain access to the facility. And 20 bikes were taken, apparently. Yeah, which is pretty bad. Apparently, hopefully covered
by insurance apart from one which is irreplaceable
because there was an Exploro custom painted by the late,
great Dario Pegoretti. – Ugh, they must be absolutely
gutted, mustn’t they? Although we said, if you
ever get offered a bike that you think might be
stolen, do not buy it. Because if you do, you are
a part, a cause, in fact, of a major, major problem
for us cyclists, haven’t you? So, although I’m a huge advocate
of buying secondhand bikes, you gotta know where it comes from. – Yup, two two, now talking
of buying stuff, though, the American chain Performance
Bicycle recently filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and in fact, they’re running liquidation sales at all of their 102 stores across the US. When you add to that the
UK mega-chain, Evans, which recently had to be bailed
out, kinda makes you wonder, do you think we’re entering a
new phase of bicycle retail? – Well, yeah, gotta wonder, haven’t you? I mean, none of those can obviously can be called local bike shops, and nor were they
specialists in online retail. It’s kinda gonna be interesting to see how it affects us consumers. This is losing, what would you call it, like the middle ground? – Yeah, interesting. – Yeah, anyway, change
the subject slightly, here is some footage of a giant bicycle. – [Emma] 19 tractors,
a 13-ton slurry truck, an excavator, and swarm
of court bikes drove for 90 minutes to create
that, it’s pretty amazing, I think, yeah.
– It is! – [Emma] You’d be pleased to hear that it also won an award. – [Simon] I am pleased. – Yup, not an eco-friendly
award, unsurprisingly, with that fuel, but the first
ever British Land Art Award. – There we go, now before
you scoff and think (blows air through lips)
British Land Art Award, Great Britain has a long
and cherished history of significant major land
art, take for example, the Westbury White Horse, or go match prehistoric times, Emma, the Uffington White
Horse, and then also this. – (exhales sharply) Yes, that is, that’s quite some six-pack. I wonder how much artistic license or maybe wishful thinking went into that. – Well, anyway, prehistoric
man putting modern man to shame there with that six pack. Anyway, moving away from
certain ab-bus slightly. If you watched any of the
GCN highlight shows over on Facebook over the summer,
you’ll be familiar, I’m sure, with the genius cycling
statistician Cillian Kelly. Well, he has just collaborated with commentator Ned
Boulting to create this. Quite frankly, one of the coolest
cycling books of all time. That’s something that gets high on my list of things that I would
like for Christmas, Emma. It is a 2018 season almanac. In here is every race
result of note this year. Not just the results but
also the weather on that day. Tour of California, Stage
2, Emma, 11 degrees C. Sunshine and showers, five kilometer an hour northwesterly wind. Not only race results, also
this has got some cool essays in here from people of note, bike riders. Another friend of the
channel, Tom Southam. And also my favorite
page, 812, GP de Plouay, women’s historical results, 2009 and 2010, Emma Pooley puts away Marienne
Vos and Emma Johansson. Two successive years! There you go. – No, that one was a good
year, it was a while ago. – Two good years, back to back! – Yeah, in other news, we
had it in the Netherlands which is already,
frankly, a bit of a mecca for cycling commuters. The authorities are investing
a further 245 million euros in cycling infrastructure. – Yeah, as if they didn’t already have good enough cycling infrastructure. But, oh no, we need more! I mean, the Netherland has a pretty enviable reputation amongst
countries, isn’t there? Bike mileage outstrips car
mileage in most towns and cities, but yet there is still
need to keep investing, and so 15 new fast bike lines. We get to skip out traffic lights, which sounds like a winner, and then also improved bike
parking at stations as well. – [Emma] My guess is a
lot that other countries could learn from that. – Absolutely.
– But we’re gonna finish Cycling Shorts with a
call to action because we, as cyclists, need to do more
to convince non-cyclists to take the roads, I mean,
on their bikes obviously. – That’s right, because according to the Transportation Research
Record which is, of course, the journal of the
Transportation Research Board, there is a measurable disconnect
between peoples perception of cycling safety versus
what we actually feel when we’re riding our bikes. – The disconnect apparently is that people riding their bikes in traffic feel safer than someone watching on would imagine, as in people think that cycling is scarier than it actually is. So maybe we just need to
encourage people to try cycling. – That’s right! So the GCN Convince a Mate
to Go Cycling Campaign starts here! At possibly the worst
time of year, December. – Yeah, well in the Northern Hemisphere. In the Southern Hemisphere,
convince a mate to go cycling. Now is the perfect time.
– That’s right. Yeah, and in the Northern Hemisphere, we can just hold fire perhaps till March. – Wait till a sunny day. – Yeah, in the three month
interim just convince yourself to go cycling ’cause it’s
not quite as miserable in the rain as you think it is. – Maybe you can start convincing me now, I might take three months. – Good point, good point. Anyway, I think it’s genuinely something we should probably think about. – Can I just interrupt
the show for one second? To tell you that we have got GCN coffee (inhales) in the shop. How cool is that? We got to go and select
the beans and the roast, and there you go. – Can I have a whiff? (Emma sniffing) – If you have to, ah. – That does absolutely
smell amazing, doesn’t it? Anyway, that comes from local legendary coffee roast, the Colonnas. As Emma said, hand
selected by us here at GCN and it is now batch number
one shipping worldwide. So you gotta get your hands on that. And can I just say, Emma, (clears throat) it tastes even better out of
a GCN espresso cup and saucer. (mellow jazz music)
(Simon slurping coffee) Mm, really rich. – Given that Christmas
is fast approaching, there are loads of great
gift ideas in the shop. I mean, our Black Friday range
has ended, but nonetheless, there are loads of tasty offers. – Not as tasty as the coffee though. – No, no, come, hey, I wanna smell. Give it back. That was my one. Oy! – This week in the tech
world we’ve got ourselves a new aero bike because FOCUS have just launched the new Izalco Max Disc. And at first glance, well, it doesn’t really look
like a aero bike, does it? Because it’s not covered in
aero foil tubing or such like. Instead, it takes a real traditional look, other than of course the drop seat stays and the oversized head tube. Once you get up close to
it, you can actually see the tubes do actually
have Kammtail profiles which help in the wind transferring over those tubes a little bit easier, as well as combining two
with a D-shape seat post which means it’s gonna cheat the wind just a little bit more too, and also give you a little
bit of extra comfort. And we’ve also got the
Bike Vault, your upgrades, which components were the most successful in 2018 World Tour, and get this, a super trick custom bike
specially made for a child. (power tool whirring) – Right, now it’s time for
Hack/Bodge of the week. And here we go, we’re gonna start out with if you live in the Northern Hemisphere, I think this could be very useful because it’s time to
think about cross-training and strength training to get strong. – [Simon] No, okay, you need some bikes. – [Emma] No, no, (chuckles) bad time. Get indoors in the gym and get strong. And here’s a cool recycling hack from @timmerdhc on Instagram. – [Simon] Wow, that is kinda cool. As in like training for sprint training by lifting up the set of
drop handlebars, but– – [Emma] Well, I’m not
too sure what they are. I thought they were for
doing like back rollouts which is about core strength. – [Simon] Oh, okay, multi-purpose. – Potentially, yeah.
– Hack we saying then? – [Emma] Oh, definitely, yeah. (punch thudding)
– Multi-purpose hack, fair play then. Alright, this is sent in by
Grant Arnold from Facebook. I mean, that look terrifying. What I assume, Emma, is going on is that they’ve attached mountain bars end to some drop handlebars
to create like a flat bar, but it looks like there’s
some break levers. – [Emma] Yeah, so they can be ya-yop in breaking when he wants to mercy, and then get down on the drops
when he wanted to take you. The only thing is,
though, that you’re gonna really struggle to fit
through any narrow gap, and you might take out
unsuspecting people. – [Simon] Well, I mean,
that’s what mountain bikers deal with all the time. They struggle with gaps and
they often take out spectators, but I’m worried about using
your bar ends to break from when all you’ve got is
a flimsy little clamp holding it to your handlebars. – [Emma] That’s a very good point. – Anyway.
– Well, mate– (spring vibrating)
– Seeing that was a bodge. Right, next up, this one
from Alistair Dennis. I mean, it’s there, isn’t it? Held in place in front of your stem like an out front mount should be, but– – [Emma] It’s just that there
was so many ways of doing it and it seems like an unnecessary
hack, if it even is one. – [Simon] I think unnecessary hack is probably the best
way of describing this. Does that make it a bodge? (spring vibrating)
– Yeah, why not just get a, get a mount. – Just get a mount, honestly! Next up we got David Mailander. Arm warmer turned sweat guard. He’s just used some
scissors and some Velcro. – [Emma] That’s brilliant. – [Simon] I think that’s brilliant. – [Emma] That’s absolutely brilliant. – [Simon] Important on your
steel De Rosa there as well. If you’re anything like me on the trainer, – I would not use–
– that thing’ll dissolve in a sea of salt water. – [Emma] I think this sweat (punch thudding)
catcher is a hack, but I think using your steel De Rosa on an indoor trainer is a bodge, like– – Oh, really?
– Well, the rust risk. – [Simon] Right, that’s why
he’s got his sweat guard, isn’t it?
– Yeah, but it’s not waterproof, is it? Is it gonna absorb some of it? If that was me, there’s
still be a puddle underneath. – Yeah, okay, me too. – Quite sweaty. – Right then, next up
then, we’ve got this, Alvi from Helsinki, this is
mudguard/fender hack/bodge. But I like it. So on a frame with massive clearance, in order to get his mudguards
to fit nice and closely, he’s used an old break
caliper mounting bolt to get it to work perfectly. That is neat, Emma,
and that fits the bill. – [Emma] Very niche, but
beautifully executed. – [Simon] That’s the perfect hack for–
– It’s beautiful. (punch thudding)
It’s something that I never thought loads of clearance would
be a problem for mudguards. You’d kinda assume that, great,
you got space for mudguards, but no, he was getting
dirty feel apparently, so there you go, he’s sold it.
– Oh, well, it worked. Well, there we go, a hack
to solve your dirty feet. What about this one from Robert Amelard. – [Emma] Yeah, I’m not really sure what you could carry on that. – [Simon] Well, we could
hang stuff off there. – [Emma] Yeah? Yeah? – [Simon] Carry your bags. – [Emma] Yes, or cut
grass or something, or. – [Simon] How’d you hang
cut grass with an aero bike? – [Emma] In sheaves. – [Simon] Oh, I see. (chuckling) There we go, sheaves of
wheat can be hung off your (spring vibrating)
new paddy rack. Alright then, anyway, we’re
gonna finish with a festive one. Mark Hagen getting in here early. He said, tubeless ain’t just for tires, I love having a tree
right after Thanksgiving, but it’s usually brown and dry by the time (punch thudding)
Christmas is here, so I use my tubeless sealant injector to keep it hydrated this year. Look, as you can see, what amazing hack! Bit of drilling, bit of injecting. Presumably water into the
roots of your Christmas tree. – That’s really clever, and
I discovered this weekend that tubeless sealant is not
all it’s cracked up to be, especially if you use it on tires not designed to be tubeless ready. – Yeah, I think that might be the problem. The sealant had a bit
too much of a job to do. But it did stay in the carpark. – It stayed in the
carpark and on my hands. It sealed some things, yeah. – Actually, that is a good point. Can I just interrupt, a quick shout out. If anyone knows how to remove dried tubeless sealant
from frames and wheels, can you let me know in
the comments section? ‘Cause I’ve got some stainage
and it’s really upsetting me. – That would be an awkward looking stain. – Yeah. (upbeat electronic music) – Now it’s time for Caption of the Week. Chance to win an amazing shiny GCN bottle. – That’s right, this is last week’s photo. Thank goodness we got to see
the back of this one, Emma. – [Emma] We did indeed see the back of it. It’s better than seeing the front. – [Simon] Oh, it was, it was. Anyway, we got some absolutely brilliant, brilliant entries this week. So much so, in fact, that
we’re gonna read a few out before we get to our winner. Shawn Taras, Simon still manages to ride despite suffering from a
serious case of hem-Lloyds. See what he did there, like that one? – [Emma] And then we’ve got Mrfilichris, proud to announce that Dan Lloyd is the new face of AssSaver. – [Simon] Ha, that’s very good. It’s a good idea for AssSaver, isn’t it? Stipulous faces on the back. Ian Stevens, Dan gets a cracking view of Si’s ride across London. Like he could go anywhere.
– Just what everybody wanted. – And then the winner.
– Yup, the winner from Neil Moss, the caption is, I think you better start it off. – [Simon] Loads of people
complimented me on my physique. – [Emma] They said Fi’zi:k, Si. – As in the saddle! Ba dum tss!
(drum rimshot) – Beautiful.
– Yeah, there we go. – You kinda have to see it written down. – Yeah, probably did.
– It’s brilliant. Absolutely brilliant. – There we go, anyway, people know. – Yup, so this week’s,
what’s our photo this week? – (laughs) I’m glad you asked, Emma. – I didn’t see, actually,
what have you chosen. – This is this week’s photo. This is a snapshot taken
from Sunday’s video where Emma does her first
ever cyclocross race. – Why did you have to choose that photo? A lot of photos were actually riding, and you chose the one time
I didn’t make it over, like seriously, don’t believe this photo. – You’ve actually given
me an idea for a caption. Emma gets crossed. – I mean, of course I’m crossed, I made it over the table top
like fives times out of six and you took the photo from
the time I didn’t make it over. – Emma clearly gets crossed. Do you actually get crossed now? As you get crossed. – No, that was rubbish,
but I really enjoyed it. It was so much fun but I didn’t get, it was absolutely useless. – It was brilliant. – I was actually–
– You have to watch, Emma did great. – I’m actually quicker running. – Yeah, anyway, it was
a tough race, I saw it, and there was quite a bit of running. Anyway, we’re getting sidetracked now. Getting ahead of ourselves. So if you fancy a chance at winning a GNC CamelBak water
bottle, please have a go at captioning this photo of Emma. To be fair, you didn’t
need to say that you were just about to deck it off
the side of a table top. You could have been about to
launch a massive tail whip, which everyone was probably
thinking was about to happen. – Yeah, I did, yeah, that was probably it. (upbeat electronic music) Now before we comment on
what’s coming up this week on the channel, we thought
we’d go through some of our favorite comments
from last week’s videos. And starting with a comment on the Top 10 Memorable
Moments of 2018 where Ian Nancollas says, shame on you, no mention of Simon
Yates’ Vuelta a Espana. – [Simon] State some passions,
isn’t it, that video? And known to believe, if you’ve only got 10 memorable moments, then you’re gonna lose some, but– – I think it’s good to still debate. – Yeah, well, yeah. It was quite memorable. I’d argue, actually, that
Simon Yates blowing up at the Giro was more memorable. – Definitely, I would say.
– But, anyway. – That would go down in
cycling history, I think. – Yeah, we’ll will it. Right, how about on How
to Plan Your Adventure. Good one here from Culross
Harbour with reference to me suggesting that Google
Street View was good resource, he said, if it’s on Street View, that diminishes the adventure. Fair point? – Yes, but I could see the point, yeah. – Yeah, but then again, Google Street View can get us everywhere. – Yeah, if that counts out any adventure then your options are
gonna be very limited. – Some countries you’re gonna
be completely off limits in. Either that or you just
go mountain biking, which is totally fair enough. And then Lee A. Dorney said, great video, thank you very much. But what the hell is on your wall? Is it a chest hair brush or
a marmite encrusted brick? Someone else asked, I
think it was David Pratt, asked whether or not it was
an old washing up sponge. And it, fair enough, not
my choice of decoration. I think it’s just art. It was art, yeah. (classical violin music) – Then we have some comments on John’s Saitama Criterium video which one from Peter Finney which, Crackergate, so awkward, yeah. I know, that cracker. A lot of viewers were a bit upset about the treatment of the cracker. So Alan also commented, RIP cracker thing, may you be forever loved. – Yeah, if you don’t know
what we’re talking about, we should put a clip in. Let’s have a clip of John at Saitama Crit. – [Cook] Oh, oh, uh! – Ooh! (laughing) No. – [Cook] We get you one. – That’s okay. – [Man] One more, one more, one more. – [Cook] One more. – [John] I can’t believe
I did that after all that. – Coming up on the channel this week, on Wednesday we’ve got
three training sessions that you can fit into just 30 minutes, plus deep section wheels
versus crosswinds. Ollie explains the dos and the don’ts. – It had to be Ollie and not Emma probably ’cause in your book, deep set wheels versus
crosswinds is just only don’t, isn’t it?
– Yeah, one of the don’ts is don’t be small. Then on Thursday we’ve got
some top Christmas gifts that would would actually
like for Christmas, as opposed to novelty
jumpers or get more chocolate at a time of the year when I– – Right, chocolate, I don’t mind. Novelty jumpers always a bit annoying because you gotta wait
a year to wear it again. – Yeah, but chocolate I always feel like I eat too much at Christmas anyway. – Well, fair then.
– Don’t need more encouragement. Friday, Ask GCN Anything. – Yeah, and then on Saturday,
can you get fit on an e-bike, and also can Lloyd-y claim
black a KOM off himself from back when he was lean and fit. That is on Saturday, as I said. And then on Sunday. Emma’s first cyclocross race, yes! – [Emma] It was fun, I’m not
sure it was that exciting. – It’s good, it’s a good watch, that one. And then Monday, of course,
is the GCN Racing News Show. And then on Tuesday it’s the
GCN Show, again, brilliant. (upbeat rock music) We are getting towards
the end of the show now, but we still have time for Extreme Corner. And this week it’s David Yakuza showing that there is still a future
for public hire bikes, even if it’s not the future
that you might have imagined. (upbeat rock music) Whoa, fair play! – Pretty gnarly but I’m a little bit hurt that you didn’t want to
use any of the footage from my cross race. – We are saving that, Emma,
for Sunday’s video, oh yes. – Well, anyway, thanks for watching, guys. And don’t forget to head over to the shop where you can’t get some
delicious smelling coffee. – Well, that hasn’t been
sniffed to death by Emma. And myself.
– I don’t think it damages it to sniff it, does it? – Sucking the flavor out maybe? – (inhaling) Sorry.
– We’ll probably do some experiments and see what that
one actually tastes like now. Anyway, yes, if you have
enjoyed watching this, please give it a big thumbs up. And if you wanna watch another video, then do make sure you
check out the recent one about cycling’s body weight obsession. How light is right? (air rushing) (heavy metal pounding) (electric screeching)

25 thoughts on “Are Helmets Just A Distraction From The Bigger Issue? | The GCN Show 308

  1. I do understand that you would need a helmet in UK traffic, however I do not understand why youwould require a helmet for biking in general. In the Netherlands we prove to you that helmets are not required to protect you. There are official reports that the helmets do not protect you in a heavy accident. So I do appreciate you needing helmets in the UK but we do not and we do not even have this discussion among the cyclists. (Of course mtb drivers and Tour de France cyclists do wear helmets in the Netherlands because of speed and terrain.

  2. Here in Madison WI USA the city puts white painted bikes with flowers at intersections where a bicyclist was killed. Every story I heard was clearly the bikers fault and quite frankly traumatized the motorist. As a taxi driver in this city I see bicyclists committing major violations endangering public safety. I can go vice versa 180 degree turn toward motorists. I feel there needs to be a protocol educated to all motorists and bicyclists to ensure we are all on the same page. Its my dream business. Mabey someday.

  3. Yes, helmets are a definite facilitator of safety for the bicycle rider.We are terribly fragile when impacting with the likes of cobbles, concrete and tar roads.A friend of mine incurred a serious injury taking a small flop off his bike (at a very slow speed) without a helmet. In addition , perhaps we should add a blinking red light to our helmets since, that is the highest and most visible to (same lane) car and truck drivers.However, living in Florida, it appears that preoccupation with cell phones are a major contributor to pedestrian and bicycle accidents.

  4. I used to object to wearing a helmet until I found myself skidding up the road on my head (more than once) and it was all down to me.

  5. Helmet or no helmet, it's a matter of choice. I've had my fair share of crashes and pretty much won't cycle anywhere without a helmet. Having cycled in Amsterdam you could argue that pedestrians need helmets too, which is ridiculous of course, and as a cyclist you get some odd looks if you do wear a helmet [unless you're in lycra on a training ride] but the infrastructure there is way ahead of the UK and has been for decades. The main issue in the UK is education. Many drivers, in say the last 20-30 years or so, won't have any element of cycling knowledge [unless they are a cyclist as well]. There used to be something called the Cycling Proficiency test that you would do in schools to be allowed to ride your bike. Maybe it needs bringing back to educate from a very early age about road sense and respect. Perhaps if you want to learn to drive, you need have cycled first? If you want to ride a scooter/motorbike you take a CBT. The UK driving test needs some kind of integration to include cycling safety. Cycling is meant to be for recreation, commuting as well as a sport for as many as possible of all ages. Helmet or not, you should allowed to do it in safety.

  6. I've been cycling almost every day of the last few decades in a third world country with no cycling tradition. I commute by bike, I buy groceries by bike, I have fun riding a bike. I had my share of accidents, both small and large, both caused by others and by myself and by sheer unluckyness, getting bruised many times (even if only the ego), breaking equipment and bones as well. But NEVER, even for a SINGLE day, no matter how short or "safe" the path was, I rode without a helmet. And by the (lost) count of destroyed/cracked/expired helmets so far, I can say with great confidence that I am probably alive thanks to them.

    Sure, If I ever got hit head on by a ten ton truck, it won't matter at all, but for almost everything else, it helps. I ride respecting EVERYTHING, ALL of the time. The others, the rules and myself. And that does not exclude riding safe and fast.

    I feel completely naked if I ever try to ride a bike without a helmet.

  7. The helmet "debate" should not be an either/or, but a both/and discussion. Improve the infrastructure but watch out for yourself!

  8. Maybe its time that in the driving school that they teach the drivers to be careful about cyclists even the ones that who know what they're doing

  9. I often ride solo on rural Wisconsin roads with 55 mph speed limits and small or non-existent shoulders. When I see, in my helmet mounted mirror, a motorist overtaking me, I have found that if I swivel my head, as if to look at them, they give me more room than if I just keep riding with my head straight ahead. I, obviously, am not rotating my body and head enough that I could look directly at the motorist, but my small acknowledgement that I am aware of their presence seems to make a difference. Most motorists seem to drive in autopilot mode and need something to break their trance. I started running daytime lights last year, as have most of the riders in our club. As far as helmets go, I have twice had my head saved in road crashes with no motorists involved. I hit the pavement in exactly the same sequence both times; hip, shoulder, helmet. Maybe it’s a cultural thing in the US, but nobody comes to our very open club rides without a helmet. It would be like showing up barefoot. We aren’t going for a ride on the beach.

  10. I'm near DC, USA. The "program" here isn't making bike lanes (although there are a few), it's putting up signs that say "Bikes Can Take Full Lane." I ride the center of the RH lane, forcing drivers to change lanes to pass me, yet I still get passed by cars partly in my lane. But when I used to ride near the shoulder, many cars didn't move over an inch when passing.
    I will never ride without a helmet, as I've destroyed 2 while riding, and can only imagine what my skull would have looked like, if I weren't wearing one.
    Cars aren't the only danger in America. One helmet was damaged when I was hit by a car, but the other one was destroyed when a pedestrian stepped into the road in front of me, without ever looking if a car was heading toward him. The helmet disintegrated, and I got a concussion, but I survived & was able to get back on my bike immediately.
    I ride with the philosophy: "People are idiots. All you can do is make sure they see you (so they have no excuses), and do what you can to improve your chances of survival."

  11. the issue here in the United States is predominately driver attitude. I have encountered a duisturbing number of people that care nothing for my safety. And i follow the rules too. there was a guy that was 15 years older than me, every time i encountered either him or his wife, they both got as close as possible to me. Law enforcement obviously shares their attitude because they make no effort to stop people who use their vehicles in a manner that can only be considered as a weapon

  12. As in most cases – especially with systemic error/risk – change can never really come from the individual. The individual can compensate slightly but solve the problem.

    Regulation of individual behaviour and re-organisation of the system and incentives is almost always the way to go. 

    This is not very likely to happen any time soon though as more often than not political will is no where to be found (and the public more often than not will not applaud any political commitment/change as effects of fundamental change is almost always somewhat uncertain and thus scary). 

    SO it really is a catch 22 – both on an individual level and systemic level. I think it is partly due to a discourse that weakens collective action through narratives such as "I make my own decisions"/"That has to be up to individual choice"/"Why should cars suffer because of bikes – thats their problem". 

    This even though its clear said choices are the individual trying to compensate for systemic error i.e. through helmets and/high vis – I think the willingness to allow the risk of traffic has to be considered a systemic error – which will only take us so far but never solve the problem.

    I mean just the fact that discussing wether high-vis and helmets are a good idea sort of proves my point. Why would that ever be a problem if the problem wasn't bigger than the individual wearing these things.

    I am from Copenhagen – and we have a long way to go in order to create an efficient and safe way to organise traffic and commuting. But the UK – its not the same ball game. Its not even the same sport… crazy.

    br

  13. Trust me (scuse the cliche), I’m a builder (and a cyclist) and being on site, I often wear just a cap or a beanie and the difference between a serious gash and I minor bruise is night and day when wearing just that thin headwear. I’ve been smacked on the head with a brick on my bonce about 2m above my head and the result wasn’t good, if I’d had my hard hat on I’d have walked away no problem. Always wear a helmet and be as visible as poss. Always have very bright lights on, even in the daylight (preferably the flashing ones). I don’t give a shit if other road users don’t like it; if they can see me they probably won’t hit me.

  14. I was given a lot more room by overtaking cars when I was riding my trike (with 700c wheels). Perhaps the rarity factor or did they think I was incompetent?

  15. I'm viewing this as a car driver that came to the channel while researching bikes, toying with the idea of getting one for exercise. This post will likely get a negative reception as it is being made in the comments section of a video from a channel dedicated to cycling, but the one sided way the headline article has been presented here rubbed me up the wrong way.

    Obviously the behaviour of SOME drivers is concerning regarding cyclists (I think it is untrue and unfair to suggest that all drivers disregard the safety of cyclists), but to suggest that trucks be banned from city centres simply because you wish to cycle is completely unrealistic. A truck is generally used to transport things. How do you think this would work? Are they supposed to park out of town and make journeys back and fourth carrying things or using a pallet truck?

    Many of the times I've seen close calls between vehicles and cyclists (and motorcyclists) is because the cyclist/motorcyclist is trying to cut through traffic and the driver wasn't aware they were there. Yes cars have mirrors, but you can't give them 100% of your attention 100% of the time. Just occasionally you need to look forward while driving. In the nature of balance I will say I've also seen a lot of drivers be complete asshats too, particularly when it comes to overtaking.

    Many cyclists expect to be treated like an item of traffic but don't act like one. I can't tell you the amount of times I've had to overtake the same cyclist multiple times because every time there's a red light they ride along the white line or pavement to the front of the queue and hold everyone up. SOME cyclists seem to think the world revolves around them and are oblivious to when they are being reckless or a downright nuisance.

  16. Although I totally Agree with the changes mentioned, that need to be made, I feel the biggest problem of it all, is WE as cyclists need to remember that we have to do our part as well it's NOT JUST DRIVERS of motor vehicles. Hundreds and hundreds of tests and studies are done on this all the time, and almost every single time there is no mention of the cyclist needing to change their habits. A person on a bicycle is exceptionally more agile and aware of their surroundings then someone in a noise free car. In my personal opinion, We as cyclists need to be more aware. We need to realize that we cannot ride our bikes anywhere we want, Even if the law says we can. We have to be smart and practical and understand that a vehicle is a huge piece of fast metal and will probably kill you if hit by one. For instance, even though in some cases you are allowed to ride in the road, say in a 25 mile an hour zone, doesn't mean you should by any means. If you can not keep up with the natural flow of traffic you are causing yourself and others around you and inconvenience and also potential harm. Get on the sidewalk or take another route. If neither of those are an option, than such is life and walk. Over the last 10 years cycling in towns and cities has become extremely popular, but now I fear the cycling community has grown so strong they're starting to get a big head And are abusing our rights. Ultimately, it's not about being right or wrong it's about being safe or potentially dead. Be smart whether you're on a bike or in a car and make sure to have fun and enjoy the ride. Now getting back to helmets… If you wear a helmet it will probably greater your chances of less injury if you were to be struck by a car or have an accident of some sort. It's a simple as that. As far as the driver Of a vehicle coming too close when passing… It goes both ways it's not about high visibility clothing or a helmet. It's about the driver scooting over a foot or 2 and the cyclist scooting over a foot or 2. It goes both ways. If you are a cyclists and you have a 2 or 3' wide shoulder do NOT ride the white line!! Scoot over. Never try to prove your point against a vehicle because the vehicle will win every time. Be smart.

  17. I've made this comment on more than one YouTube video mentioning the helmet debate…One of my grandfathers relied on bicycles for basic transportation back before that was "cool" (1930's-1970's). He was going fishing one day with his tackle on his bike when his fishing line caught in his front wheel, flipping him. He came down on his head. He didn't have a helmet…They generally weren't used then (early 1970's). He suffered a brain injury and was bedridden, insensible, for the last 18 months of his life. Segregated bike lanes and aware car drivers would not have changed that.
    I always wear a helmet.

  18. Helmet is a "passive" protection, that may save you once the crash happened . The best protection is the one that avoid accident, so put the odds on your side and make everything possible to be visible from drivers => remove all black and dark jerseys and jackets from your wardrobe and keep all red and fluo stuff.

  19. I had a look at the data for this study, the difference in passing distance between the best and worst performing outfits was 8cm.

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