Evaluating an in-school injury prevention programme's effect on children's helmet wearing habits
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PRIMARY OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effectiveness of the Bikes, Blades and Boards (BB&B) programme. It was hypothesized that children who participated in the BB&B programme would demonstrate greater knowledge of how to wear their helmets safely than a control group who did not participate in the programme and retain their skills when assessed 1 year later. RESEARCH DESIGN: Single blind cluster randomized design. METHODS AND PROCEDURES: Twelve classes of grade 2 students (n = 162) participated; six classes were assigned to an experimental or control group. A blinded research assistant, taking 3-5 minutes per child, completed the Helmet Checklist with each group on two occasions and scores of the experimental group (post-BB&B programme) were compared to the control group. The experimental group was reassessed using the Helmet Checklist, 1 year later. EXPERIMENTAL INTERVENTIONS: The BB&B programme consisted of a presentation, bicycle helmet checklist, demonstration and individual practice and feedback. MAIN OUTCOMES AND RESULTS: Children in the experimental group showed a better knowledge of how to wear their helmets safely compared to the control group (F = 51.84, CI = 9.11-9.71) and retained this knowledge 1 year after participating in the BB&B programme. CONCLUSIONS: The BB&B programme is effective in teaching grade 2 children how to wear their helmets correctly, which is knowledge they retain for at least 1 year.
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