It’s not if, but when!
You will, if you haven’t already, need to take care of a friend when he goes down hard from riding. It’s not an easy job either. In my time I’ve seen a few bad ones, some quite grizzly injuries like Daves above, some very serious, even though they appear ok. Bones sticking out, feet backwards, unconscious and blood squirting out right at me. During a modern apprenticeship at building college we did basic first aid, which has helped on a couple of occasions, but not to any great extent. There’s just some stuff that’s too mental for a BMXer to treat, and luckily the UK’s emergency services do a great job.
We opened it up on Facebook and asked;
Should BMXers have some kind of basic first aid skills?
Chanel Luc “Riders should definitely have at least basic knowledge of first aid, and know not to move somebody with a potential spine injury. I think riders are so used to getting hurt and getting up that they don’t often realise the potential harm they can do to themselves.” It’s not hard to do a few hours training, or even look up online how to treat specific injuries. Surprisingly for the amount of injuries we do come across, not many of us have any idea at all of how to take care of our friends! Lord Chewington “First aid……..or wear a helmet.” Good point and to be fair helmets are getting way more popular these days which is cool but Jack Greaves is on hand with the sarcasm “First aid training for bmx? just wear a lid – so no matter what the injury is, a helmet will save you? if you break your leg no first aid needs to be done because you had a helmet on? Why dont we just shut down hospitals and get people everywhere to just wear helmets in everyday life, problem solved” I LOL’d to be honest, but yeah when the foot is at a right angle, I’m not sure how a helmet could have helped.
helmets are getting way more popular these days which is cool
Leo Coyle-Smith “I agree that everyone should have a basic knowledge, and not be scared of blood like a lot of people seem to be. I’ve been trained in first aid for other activities before, I’ve used it to look after cuts, concussions and suspected broken bones when mountainbiking, thankfully I’ve never needed it for bmx. Although, one of my mates slams on big stuff quite a lot, he seems to get away with bruises and grazes at the moment, but it might come in useful yet.” Generally having some kind of first aid skills could help, would you know what to do if a family member had a stroke?
United’s Tom Sanders is no stranger to the odd mishap. Here he is on the gas and air thanks to buddy Josh Bedford. Joe Cox photo.
Dean Hearne United Bike Co Team Manager
Do you think team managers should have basic first aid training?
Actually, yeah I do. Without wanting to sound like an old dear lets face it, riding a BMX bike can get pretty dangerous, and knowing and having the confidence to deal with a situation should it happen can make a huge difference. Cuts, bruises, sprains and breaks are all pretty straight forward, but if someone hits their head, or goes unconscious someone being on hand that knows what they are doing is pretty important.
just drop the del boy ‘el Ambulance Hospital mange tout’
What do you do when preparing for a trip with the crew in ref to safety, i.e have the countries emergency numbers prepped, how to ask for an ambulance in the correct language? do you carry a first aid kit etc?
I wouldn’t say I personally take it that far, as long as you know how to deal with the event that happens, getting Ambulances etc if needed and something is serious enough you can do pretty easily. If you don’t know the lingo just drop the del boy ‘el Ambulance Hospital mange tout’ with a concerned look on your face and plenty of arm movements and you’ll get your point across.
Jay Clark Paramedic & BMXer
Jay Clark hit us up over Facebook too, he fired over this shot of his friend who suffered a fractured ankle while riding. Luckily Jay is a paramedic by trade, and even luckier for the patient he had issue 177 of the mag to use as a splint! Jay offered up some basic advice for BMXers which was really cool of him;
if bleeding apply pressure and elevate affected area
Fractures you need to support the break and call for help. If its chest, pelvis or femur fracture these can be life threatening so definatley call 999 and don’t move them. Cuts if bleeding apply pressure and elevate affected area (if possible). If knocked out recovery position, if safe to move the person. It’s always good to be mindful of any central neck or back pain. If this is present the person should not be moved and 999 called straight away.
St. John’s Ambulance Service have a step by step for first aid and injuries on there website as well.