Alberta’s 4-H will require riding helmets to be worn while on horseback during 4-H events starting next month.
Effective Oct. 1, the youth organization will require a "properly fitted" and ASTM/SEI- (American Society for Testing and Materials Safety Equipment Institute) or BSI- (British Standards Institution) approved equestrian helmet be worn for all mounted 4-H events.
"This policy was put in place to reduce the risk of horseback riding injuries at 4-H events," the provincial agriculture and rural development department said in a newsletter Thursday.
The province cited data from the American Academy of Pediatrics which found 20 per cent of injuries in young riders are to the central nervous system, mostly in the form of cerebral contusions, concussions or skull fractures.
The province’s statement didn’t provide data about injuries to 4-H members on horseback.