Barriers to wearing bicycle safety helmets in The Netherlands

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1995 Feb;149(2):174-80. doi: 10.1001/archpedi.1995.02170140056009.


Objective: To explore behavioral factors that determine whether children (aged 7 to 13 years) wear bicycle safety helmets.

Design: Cross-sectional survey.

Setting: Three Dutch primary schools in Breda, Maastricht, and Terneuzen, the Netherlands.

Participants: Two hundred fifty-nine children aged 7 to 13 years.

Intervention: Wearing a bicycle safety helmet for 6 consecutive weeks.

Results: Information about experiences with the bicycle safety helmet was gathered via questionnaires. Wearing a bicycle safety helmet was described as inconvenient, time-consuming, and uncomfortable. Children also perceived negative reactions from their social environment.

Conclusions: Planned health promotion activities will be essential for the introduction of bicycle safety helmets to be successful. These activities should focus particularly on developing a comfortable bicycle safety helmet, creating facilities to store bicycle safety helmets, and changing negative social norms regarding wearing a bicycle safety helmet.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Attitude*
  • Bicycling / injuries*
  • Brain Injuries / prevention & control*
  • Child
  • Cooperative Behavior*
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / prevention & control*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Head Protective Devices / statistics & numerical data*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Netherlands
  • Safety*
  • Social Environment