Community-based programmes to promote use of bicycle helmets in children aged 0-14 years: a systematic review.

Anneliese Spinks, Cathy Turner, Rod McClure, Caroline Acton, Jim Nixon

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Hospital-based research has shown that wearing a helmet reduces the risk of head injury in bicycle riders. These studies have provided the impetus for community-wide interventions to increase the numbers of cyclists who wear helmets; however, the effectiveness of such programmes is undetermined. This study employs extensive search strategies to review the scientific literature to establish the effectiveness of community-wide programmes to increase helmet use among cyclists. Thirteen community-wide intervention studies using substantive methodologies were located in 16 published papers. The community-wide interventions include mandating helmet wearing, education campaigns, distribution of free or subsidized helmets or, more frequently, combinations of all of these methods of influence. All studies reported success in influencing helmet wearing across communities. However, none of the studies reveals enough detail of the mix or techniques employed in the interventions to replicate the interventions. While it is encouraging that all of the studies showed positive results, the way forward for further implementation of helmet wearing is for adequate documentation of successful interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-142
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Injury Control and Safety Promotion
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2005
Externally publishedYes


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