I'm bummed about injury risk...

I'm mid 40s, getting back into riding after 25 years away. I bought a WR450. I'm trail riding with it every week.

I'm not racing. I'm riding. But I'm riding with guys my age who have aspiration of racing, mostly just for the fun of it, but speed is always on their agenda.

I've never really been injured on a bike. And I don't want a serious injury.

I've been reading the neck brace thread as well as other threads that detail injuries. I'm not seeking them out, there are just a lot of them. I'm amazed at how many people get hurt and how serious the injuries are.

We were at a hare and hound race last weekend. I observed from trail side. Great fun to watch. But I couldn't help but notice the 16 year old rider not participating because he was wearing a neck brace due to breaking his neck while going over a log pile on his training course. And my buddy was back for the first time since getting lost off the trail and running into a fallen tree, giving him headaches for 4 months. And then there was the guy back from smashing his ankle last year. He was on crutches for 6 months.

I love that I'm riding again, but I need to stay injury free.

It's all in the right hand. :thumbsup:

 

 

 

.......and take off your skirt.

 

They'll all risk inherent sports. Skiing,mnt. bike, dirt bike. Take those away and you're a sheeple. I'll take the risk.

;)

Edited by poconovfr

I hate to be the one to say it but its part of the sport. Falls, wrecks, accidents happen, I have read somewhere that stats say that a game of foot ball is more dangerous than riding dirt bikes. Just have fun for the moment and deal with the issues when they come, look at those kids even though they got hurt they still came out to support the sport and there friends and prob cant wait to get back on a bike, its just a little pause in the game of riding. 

It sounds like your fear of injury is stronger than you passion and need to ride, and that you mind is already made up that any 'serious' injury will have only a negative outcome.....

 

Self fulling prophecy....

 

Time to switch to Checkers.

I know riders that broke their arm rolling off the couch. Remember when Pastrana tore up his shoulder while swimming laps? Hell, you probably have a better chance of getting hurt driving TO the riding spot than you do actually riding.

Most of us understand your concern, but I've developed this saying:

 

The level of danger is proportionate to the level of intensity at which you ride.

 

That 16 year old kid breaking his neck over log crossings is very flukey, rare.. hopping logs must have been way above his skill level.  But if you recognize that climbing a pro level hill with jagged rocks and cliffs is outside of your skill set, then you and I are mature enough not try the hill.  In fact, I've gotten to the point now that I know 95% of the time whether I can climb a hill, and if I'm not sure I can do it, I won't even try unless I have a way out of danger. 

 

Just make good judgements and be aware of your skill level.  Push it, but not when the consequence of a mistake is serious.

Edited by LovingOffroadPain

You do not have to crash to ride. I last fell in 1992, People I ride with fall every day. I just look and shake my head.

 

If you have buddies that want to ride beyond their abilities, let them. You do not have to. Becoming a better rider does not mean riding out of control and 'just making it'.

 

 

You are in control. Keep it that way.

Oh--if you ride at 80% of your capabilities, you will NEVER fall.  I only crash or fall when I start to push myself into the 95% ability range, then you begin making mistakes and not ride as smoothly.  Even pro desert racers i would watch pass the bomb run at 90 MPH were only pushing it into the 80s% range because above that can be fatal at high speeds.

 

So--the terrain and context are important to consider with how hard you push yourself.  Pushing yourself on trails in the trees is not biggie, you might clip a tree and slide into a bush.  But pushing yourself on triple jumps that are outside your comfort zone can be fatal.. literally.  I knew a guy who's gone to be with Jesus because of this

I'm bummed about injury risk too. No one likes injuries.

 

I'm NOT bummed about injury risk enough to not ride. 

 

There are two things in play when I consider the risk of injury in this sport or any other that I do (all of which are risky :) )

 

1.) Psychological risk vs. physical risk: What I mean is, I ride, in part, for my psychological well being. Some people cope by self medicating (they drink a lot or they smoke weed) others cope by eating junk food and getting fat, zoning out in front of the tube, or sometimes in even more destructive ways. Others find positive outlets, and many are able to do that in non-risky sports or hobbies like Golf, painting etc. I have to ride (relatively) fast and punch people in the face (I do martial arts too.) It's just how I'm wired. 

 

The question is, what do YOU need to do to cope with your job, relationship, kids or whatever responsibilities you have, and is the psychological health it promotes worth a potential physical injury? 

 

2.) Your level of self-control and decision making. What I mean is, are you objective enough to know your limits, and disciplined enough to ride within them, at least most of the time? If you are, then you will likely never have a "serious" injury. Of course crashes happen, but broken necks and backs, fractured hips, broken femurs... should not be in your future if you are riding responsibly. Yes, it could happen, but it isn't likely. 

 

I turn 35 soon, have a wife and kids and run my own business. It wasn't until recently that I really started to obtain item number 2. As a kid I had local snowboarding sponsorship and competed. I would try and ride anything. I would jump off anything. If someone said I couldn't clear a gap, I jumped it. I competed in martial arts as well. I would fight anyone, anytime. I never bowed out of a challenge, never said I was sore lets take it easy etc. I broke my back in H.S. dislocated both shoulders, blew out my knee, collar bone, broke ribs, broke my arm etc etc... 

 

As I got older, longevity started to matter to me more than being the swinging dick in the room. I started to ride and train with guys who never really had any "serious" injuries, and they were really fast. They simple took their time to learn and work up to it, and they didn't let ANYONE push them to try something they didn't reasonably think they could do. 

 

You can chose to do the same, and spend a lot of year riding and being healthy. My uncle is 70 and races HS and enduros every weekend all over the country. Has since he was 13. He's had some injuries, but he learned early and he is smart about his riding. 

My wife and I are both pretty much retired from racing now, partly due to injuries. Except for one head-on collision where a jackass ran straight into me, neither of us has ever been injured while trailriding, over several thousand hours.

 

You can still ride with high-intensity safely, just pick your spots. Where the cost of a mistake is high (very fast terrain, severe exposure, etc....) ride more conservatively. 

it's been quite a while since I actually crashed.  The last 2 times was from losing the front wheel in quad tracks. More common for me is the "TOMMY TIPOVER".  Is anyone familiar with this term?  It's when the bike hits the ground but the speed at the time was ZERO.  I just did one trying to make a U-turn on a single track.  I put my foot down and there was no ground there and I couldn't hold it up.   To OP, there are some things you can do to help avoid the inherent risks.  As someone said, SLOW DOWN.  So your buds are racy kind of riders.  They should know you aren't AND respect your choice.  Don't get caught up in the "race to the trailhead" stuff.  If they give you constant crap about your speed, maybe you should find different riding mates.   Next, get the proper safety equipment.  In the event you ARE riding sensibly and something unpredictable happens, at least you're protected as well as possible.  That's about all you can do.  If you do all this & it still keeps you up nights, better find another hobby.

You only live once.

I personally am not gonna live worrying about getting hurt.

You're probably putting yourself at more risk getting in your car to go to work everyday.

Most of us understand your concern, but I've developed this saying:

 

The level of danger is proportionate to the level of intensity at which you ride.

 

That 16 year old kid breaking his neck over log crossings is very flukey, rare.. hopping logs must have been way above his skill level.  But if you recognize that climbing a pro level hill with jagged rocks and cliffs is outside of your skillet, then you and I are mature enough to recognize that and not try the hill.  In fact, I've gotten to the point now that I know 95% of the time whether I can climb a hill, and if I'm not sure I can do it, I won't even try unless I have a way out of danger. 

 

Just make good judgements and be aware of your skill level.  Push it, but not when the consequence of a mistake is serious.

This ^

 

Just stay in your comfort zone and you should be fine. If you have a worry about doing something or going a little faster, don't do it. Ride at your own pace and don't rush it for anyone else because when you ride over your head that is when you get hurt.

It will be as dangerous as you make it. The real problems usually come when you get out of your comfort zone. There is always bad luck situations, those just come with everyday life but may be elevated on two wheels. I am 23 years old now, have been actively pursuing racing my whole life and have an injury list that makes me sound like Pastrana without the fame. Ride and race within your means and your chances of serious injury go down, and make sure your always on top of it mentally. The first time I blew out my knee I was finishing a ride, heading back to the truck not paying attention going 1st gear speed. I personally feel much more at control at speed while I'm racing and training, a lot of injuries come from just messing around. Big injuries that take 6 months + to come back from suck, and after a few of those it starts to take its toll. Theres always a way to pursue having fun on a bike though, wether it be moto, off road, dual sport ect, just enjoy the ride.  :thumbsup:

Get busy living or get busy dying.

it's been quite a while since I actually crashed.  The last 2 times was from losing the front wheel in quad tracks. More common for me is the "TOMMY TIPOVER".  Is anyone familiar with this term?  It's when the bike hits the ground but the speed at the time was ZERO.  I just did one trying to make a U-turn on a single track.  I put my foot down and there was no ground there and I couldn't hold it up.   To OP, there are some things you can do to help avoid the inherent risks.  As someone said, SLOW DOWN.  So your buds are racy kind of riders.  They should know you aren't AND respect your choice.  Don't get caught up in the "race to the trailhead" stuff.  If they give you constant crap about your speed, maybe you should find different riding mates.   Next, get the proper safety equipment.  In the event you ARE riding sensibly and something unpredictable happens, at least you're protected as well as possible.  That's about all you can do.  If you do all this & it still keeps you up nights, better find another hobby.

Never heard that term before.  But in June I my bike rolled forward as I was getting off, knocking me down and trashing a knee.  I won't be trail riding again until next year. 

Lesson learned...get knee protection.  I had everything else.  

AFLAC

 

Now quit whining :D

:thumbsup:

I rode dirt bikes as a kid and never hurt myself but it was just for fun and no racing.  I just started riding again the last 2 years and I had no falls up until 2 days ago when some kid out of nowhere drifted right into me on a fast straightaway on the vet track.  My front wheel  went back and forth and before I knew it I was thrown off onto my right side.  I would just add that you have to be careful for goons on the track.  I notice a lot of times guys are on the vet track or even the beginner and pee wee tracks riding way above their ability because they think they are the next Villopoto.  I say go on the maintrack if you think you are so fast then.  I wear a 6D helmet, Leatt neck brace. Fox body armor, Allsports wrist braces,knee guards and Gaerne boots.  I think I've spent more on safety equipment than my bike and luckily I didn't break any bones but I bruised the hell out of all my right ribs, sprained my shoulder and elbow.  My advice would be to research and wear really good equipment, make sure you are on a track that isn't too crowded with young guys constantly on the rev limiter and be aware of people around you if they crash on the other side of the upcoming jump or if they are going to try to block pass you in a corner.  Just let these guys pass and don't engage in a drag race.  I think that you can control how safe you ride but there's other people on the track riding at all different comfort levels and unfortunately they can cause you to crash.  It's the same with driving a motorcycle on the road and having an unaware motorist cut you off.

You only live once.

I personally am not gonna live worrying about getting hurt.

You're probably putting yourself at more risk getting in your car to go to work everyday.

thats how i feel.

riding will keep you alive. i have a friend in his 60s and he rocks vet B!! just ride in your skill level and have fun. There is more danger in day to day life than in riding if you use your head and dont go outside your comfort zone.

case and point, ive been working with my dad on and off since i was a kid with his construction company. Last year 15feet off the ground he fell off a ledge putting ip a handrail. Landed on his head and hes crippled for the rest of his life, list use of his right hand.

How many of us on here are in trades? We dont give a second thought about going to work everyday and the danger is there all the time.

live your life buddy, enjoy riding a d have fun. You could take up golf and die driving to the golf course in a wreck or a sinkhole that swallows the highway. Or when u leave the store with a new putter and a person txting in a car rides up on the sidewalk and runs you over.

ride smart and get quality

boots

Helmet

Knee braces or guards

body armor

Neck brace.

Etc

Fear of injury (or anything else for that matter) will kill your ability to ride. I had an incident summer of '12, cost me half my middle finger off my left hand. Still riding. My wife (who was right behind me when this happened) says if I have a SERIOUS injury I will have to quit. Wondering what that might be??? Cut off my head????

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