So, you or your child has acquired a stunt scooter! But it’s not just a case of ‘getting out there’ and scooting, as these safety tips are vital, too.
Becoming the owner of a brand spanking new stunt scooter can be immensely exciting – but that doesn’t mean you should just get on it and start scooting. At the very least, you need to have the right protective equipment to hand.
Thankfully, it isn’t too difficult to find great-quality dedicated stunt scooter safety gear – but there are certain other things you ought to bear in mind, too.
Not all scooter helmets are the same...
What’s the biggest step you can take to ensure the greatest possible safety stunt scooter users can benefit from? That’s easy: buying the right helmet. In fact, such head protection should be considered essential, even when you aren’t in the skate park or trying to pull off stunts.
However, different types of helmet do suit different situations and conditions that you might face when on your scooter.
If you’re just using your stunt scooter to pop out to the shops, for instance, a speed helmet – the type of helmet that cyclists use – will suffice. These helmets combine lightness with ventilation, which also makes them handy for scooting longer distances or even racing.
But of course, you’ve probably bought your stunt scooter in the first place so that you can perform freestyle tricks on it. For such use, you’ll need a street or ramp helmet. This type of helmet is shaped like a bowl to improve the protection given to the back of your neck and cervical area, which could otherwise be exposed and vulnerable if you fall off your scooter.
Then, there’s the integral helmet. This is the type of helmet to go for if you are a hardened daredevil or speed demon. It looks much like those that motorcyclists use, and there are versions with and without visors.
As you might imagine, scootering along at elevated speeds could leave you at even greater risk of nasty injury if you suffer an accident. That’s why integral helmets are especially durable. But they are aerodynamic too, to avoid your safety coming at the expense of being unable to break your current ‘personal best’ speed records.
But there’s more to keeping safe than just strapping on a helmet
It’s one thing to pick a suitable helmet, though, and quite another thing to ensure it actually fits properly around your head. This will necessitate measuring the circumference of your head, specifying a helmet that is of the corresponding size and checking that the helmet is neither too tight that it is uncomfortable, nor so loose that it moves around your head when you put it on. If necessary, adjust the chin straps and the wheel on the back of the head, if your helmet has one.
Then, there is the thing that your head needs other than a helmet: the right mindset. It’s important to only use your stunt scooter when you feel well-rested, energised and motivated, rather than fatigued, fearful or stressed out. It’s also important to pace yourself while on your scooter, as practising hard for extended periods could tire you out quicker.
You can help to keep yourself in optimal condition – and therefore able to sustain your effort level for longer – by staying hydrated, snacking regularly and taking routine breaks.
Remember that mindset and physical condition are so important in part because you need to be able to keep up your concentration levels. Any concentration lapses could put you at risk of an accident. It’s therefore crucial to be able to keep the basics at the forefront of your mind, including always thinking about where you will be scooting and not forcing yourself to go beyond reasonable limits.
Finally, if you ever find your motivation flagging, why not listen to music or even just have a favourite song of yours in your head as you scoot? Just make sure you stay aware of your surroundings and are not distracted. Scooting with friends or family could also help to ensure you look out for each other to better protect the safety of every member of the group.