My horse is on vacation due a torn meniscus. So I have been riding a friends horse. He is a well schooled horse in his mid teens but he has a little issue with mounting due to an accident that happened about a year ago where he got caught up in a mounting block and tore his leg up pritty bad. So, I have been working with him on that and we just take our time getting on. Yesterday was a very nice day, a little windy but worm. He had not been ridden in a while but I was just riding in the front ring by the barn, so I figured he would be fine. We went out to the ring and I did everything I normally do before mounting (stomp on the mounting block, pat him, lay accross him, etc... kind of what you would do with a young horse). He seemed fine, no backing up or running forward, no indication at all that he was going to do anything. I went to get on him, again very slowly and carfully. As soon as I got my leg around him he took off like a bullet out of a gun. I was completely taken off guard, he threw in a buck or two and I had no chance, I was on the ground. The ground was hard and I must have hit my head because my helmet ended up in two peaces. I think I hit the brim of the helmet on the ground because it came apart from there and the shell of th helmet came off of the skull part. I dont' really remember how I hit the ground but my right side hurts and my head hurt. I think I did pass out for a second or two. Anyway, I only hit the ground, no pole, no fence, just the hard ground. I woudl have been hurting much worse then I am today without my helmet! I need to go get a new one now, but I know that helmet did it's job!!! And I am thankful for that! I am a little sore today and had a bit of a headache all day yesterday and it still kinda lingers today, but I am fine. Minor nausia yesterday right after the fall but none since and no blured vision or dissiness. Who knows what would have happened if I had not had it on. I would most likely have at least had a minor head injury, but probably worse. I respect you right to make the decision for yourself for those of you out there who are adults (over 18) and choose not to wear one, but I know I will always have my helmet on my head anytime I choose to get on a horse from now on!!!