A new study has shown that riders who use a motorcycle in their daily lives are less likely to die of head and neck injuries than riders who ride for recreational reasons.
In a pilot study of more than 2,500 cyclists, researchers found that riders with a motorcycle on the road were significantly less likely than riders with no motorcycle to have serious head injuries.
The findings were published online Thursday by the journal JAMA Internal Medicine.
“People have been looking for a safer, more affordable alternative to riding a motorcycle for many years,” said Dr. John A. Biederman, a pediatrics professor at the University of Michigan who led the study.
“But it wasn’t clear that there was a safe alternative.
The main question was, how do you get to this safer alternative?”
Biedermans team, which included the authors of the new study, analyzed data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Health Interview Survey, which collects information about people’s health over a year.
It also collected data from other sources, including news reports, surveys and other sources.
They found that the average motorcycle rider had about 50% more head and facial injuries than the average rider riding a car or truck.
The average rider had a higher chance of dying of head injury than the rider riding for recreation.
“The primary focus of our study was to determine how well we could do a comparison of motorcycle riding and riding for recreational purposes,” said Biederc.
“We didn’t find a significant difference between the two.”
In addition to head and face injuries, the researchers found more than a third of riders had some type of injury to their upper extremities.
The most common injuries were minor abrasions and bruises, which could occur while riding or when riding alone.
Bledermans research team is still collecting data on riders’ health and injury patterns.
In the future, Biederal may compare riding on motorcycles with riding a regular vehicle.
Bhederc said his team is interested in finding out how motorcycle riders’ habits change over time, as well as what factors influence riders’ risks for injury.
“In the meantime, I think we should be taking a closer look at the motorcycle as a safer and more affordable option than driving,” he said.
“If we’re going to continue to look at motorcycle safety, we should also look at other ways of getting around in a more affordable way.
Riding for recreation could be an effective way of doing that.”