An MSc student at the University of Surrey is conducting an indepth study into the use of helmets in snow sports.
Masters student Mary Ondrusz hopes to uncover the reasons why some skiers and snowboarders choose not to wear helmets.
Ondrusz writes, "There is evidence to suggest that the use of helmets may reduce the risk of serious head induries by as much as 50 percent. Nevertheless, use of helmets varies widely across regions with uptake as low as 12 percent in some areas."
Ski helmets laws are a hot topic across ski areas worldwide. Austria was the first to bring in mandatory helmet use for under 14s in January 2009. California is currently considering mandatory ski helmet laws: two bills have been introduced, one requiring minors to wear a helmet while skiing or snowboarding and the other to extend to resort operations with sign posting, safety planning, and injury reporting. California would have the tightest helmet laws in the U.S. if the bills pass.
As part of her research project, Ondrusz has compiled a questionnaire asking skiers and snowboarders about their helmet use, with questions such as: do you wear a helmet when skiing/snowboarding or do you hate the idea of them? Do you think helmets are over-hyped or under-promoted? The full questionnare can be found here.