According the CDC, "
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a major cause of death and disability in the United States. TBIs contribute to about 30% of all injury deaths. Every day, 153 people in the United States die from injuries that include TBI." At Solidarity Cycling, we have had our own brush with concussions and TBI. Our co-founder and CEO, Eliza Russell, recently experienced a severe concussion during a crash while riding on a gravel road outside Casper, WY during preparation for a 130 mile gravel race that she will not participate in. She doesn't remember the actual crash, but looking at her Strava statistics during this particular ride, her speed shows her going from 24 mph to 0 instantaneously. And her head was one of the first things to hit the ground. She estimates she lost conscience for about 15 minutes.
Eliza was wearing a helmet from Lumos at the time of her crash. Fast forward almost 6 weeks later, and Eliza is still feeling the effects of her crash and subsequent concussion. Headaches, short-term memory loss, emotional distress, and many other debilitating effects that continue to linger. Only recently was she allowed to drive, and she has trouble looking at a computer screen for any length of time. She was recently given the go-ahead to ride a stationary bike for short periods of time, but experienced a set-back in her recovery. It's beyond frustrating for someone who just wants to ride and be outside. So we want something positive to come from this incident to bring more awareness to concussions, and hopefully raise some money at the same time.
See image below which is Eliza's Lumos Helmet post crash.
We are calling it "Miles for Eliza". Those of us in the Solidarity family are partnering with the Brain Injury Alliance of Wyoming (BIAW) to build more awareness about identifying concussions, but also ways to improve your odds of avoiding a concussion and what to do if you or someone you know suspects they have a concussion. So, we are picking up Eliza's training miles where she can't from today through the end of May. We have set up a donation page with BIAW with a fundraising goal of $3000 so anyone can make even a small donation that can make a huge impact for someone else.
We also encourage everyone to join us on our Instagram page and follow along, or even contribute your own image while putting in your own #Miles4Eliza by writing on a card, your arm, your jersey with #Miles4Eliza or #MilesforEliza and #ConcussionAwareness written on it to help spread the message for more concussion awareness, and also to raise more money. And if you have questions about concussions please just ask. And, always, wear your helmet whenever you or one of your kids is riding their bike. Even an innocent crash at low speed can cause a concussion, and kids are more susceptible to TBI than adults are.
Once again, DONATE HERE, or go to http://bit.ly/Miles4Eliza
Eric Graham (CMO), and all of our amazing ambassadors who are rallying behind this cause. Special thanks to Stacy Frazer for organizing this amazing fundraising opportunity.