Helmet Safety

2014-1123 Muppets without Helmets
The Great Muppet Caper (1981) Directed by Jim Henson

After reading dozens of articles, I was fairly certain there was nothing I could add to the discussion, until I remembered a scene from The Great Muppet Caper in which Kermit, Ms. Piggy, and all of their Muppet friends were riding bikes. I was taught to ALWAYS wear a helmet when riding a bike, and yet the Muppets seemed to be saying the helmet rule is not so important. I was confused. I did not know whether to believe “the rule” or the Muppets.

Although many of the articles I read credit an Olympian for recently raising the issue, it is clear to me that Kermit, Miss Piggy, and their Muppet friends raised the issue many years earlier. Nonetheless, I picked the best article I read and shared an excerpt of the article, even though the article does not mention the Muppet connection. I also provided a link to the complete article in the Credits section of this post.

Excerpt of Article by Erin Beresini | Outside Magazine

We always preach the importance of wearing a helmet while cycling. But new research suggests that the brain buckets aren’t keeping us much safer—and one Olympian argues we should do away with them altogether. So what can we do to keep cyclists safe?

Olympic gold medalist Chris Boardman’s BBC morning show appearance truly set people off when he stated on the show, and later on the BBC’s Facebook page and in an article on British Cycling.org that helmets “discourage people from riding a bike” and shift the attention away from what’s most likely to kill a rider—a car.


Click here to read another Beyond Injury post.

Thanks to Erin Beresini for writing the article; Outside Magazine for committing its resources to publishing the article; Chris Boardman for increasing awareness of the problem; BBC and British Cycling for providing Boardman a forum in which to share his opinion; the director, writers, puppet masters, cast and crew of The Great Muppet Caper; YouTube for hosting the video; Google for helping me find the article; and all the other people who, directly or indirectly, made it possible for me to include the picture and text I used in this post.


  1. A helmet will help to protect the scalp, and the skull from fracturing, but it will not prevent a concussion, shearing injury, brain contusion, etc. The brain bounces around the skull in trauma, so it doesn’t really matter what part of the head was physically impacted when it comes to trauma to brain tissue. In other words, if a person hits his right temporal bone, he very well may have a contusion in that area, but he most likely will suffer from deficits in other areas of the brain.

    1. Lisa, thank you for taking time to share the comment. Is it fair to say you are in favor of wearing a helmet, but also recognize a helmet is not designed to prevent all type of head/brain injury? ~ Scott

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