Tahnee Seagrave to Miss Fort William World Cup DH Due to Concussion

May 17, 2022 at 17:36
by Sarah Moore  


Tahnee Seagrave has revealed today on Instagram that she won't be competing this weekend in Fort William since she suffered a concussion three weeks ago in a huge crash and she doesn't want to take any risks when it comes to her brain.

Seagrave says that the main symptom she developed as a result of the concussion was severe anxiety.


bigquotesIt’s been a while since I logged on here... I won’t be racing the World Cup this weekend. After having Covid I had a huge crash 3 weeks ago and suffered a concussion and I won’t be taking any risks when it comes to the brain.

I feel it’s important to share that my main symptom wasn’t one I was aware of until now. I developed severe anxiety and I couldn’t help but notice this has been simmering for a while and the concussion was what made it boil over.

There is so so so much I would like to say about this topic and what I have been through in the past few months because it’s such a taboo subject, but I can’t find the words just yet so that will have to be another day…

Giving myself the space to heal right now and hopefully will be back sooner rather than later. Much love for now. X

(Ps. I want meant to be launching my @foxmtb Collab this weekend but that will be postponed until further notice. Will still let you know when it will be available online and in stores)
Tahnee Seagrave


We wish Tahnee all the best with her recovery and look forward to seeing her on the race course again once her brain is fully healed.


89 Comments

  • 250 2
 Respect for making the hard, but right call.
  • 11 2
 Agree. I'm confused, however. about what the taboo subject is. Anxiety? Talking about this isn't taboo anymore, is it?
  • 16 0
 @rrolly: It's much less stigmatised than it used to be, sure, but it's still not an easy thing to admit to. Also, just because there's increased awareness it doesn't necessarily mean enough people understand.
  • 7 0
 @rrolly: Missing a race and disappointing sponsors who all want screen and photo time due to anxiety is a taboo issue for sports people who get paid to race. I would guess. But yeah it shouldnt be and the sponsors should (and in many cases probably are, at least until renewal time) be OK with it.
  • 3 0
 @paulskibum: Could you imagine how good the sponsors would make out by supporting someone who deals with anxiety? That's a win, for sure.
  • 57 0
 This is why crash detection technology is crucial to the future of brain safety. More people need to know that if you hit your head or experience any kind of rapid deceleration you need to take minimum 2 weeks off to avoid long term damage.
  • 27 1
 It's such a tricky situation. What would be the threshold for crash detection? Would 2 weeks mandatory rest be effective? Concussion is so unpredictable, unfortunately no single solution will fit all.
  • 18 0
 What about g-force sensors on helmets?
Would be interesting.
  • 10 0
 @effeffeff: would be really easy to integrate, it has been done in other sports unobtrusively. IMU’s are tiny.
  • 6 0
 Exactly, all the expensive telemetry stuff to cut as much time as possible, but nothing to monitor affects to the rider.
  • 3 0
 Sounds sensible.
Here is an idea. You get a sensor with your timing chip and plate number. If you record over xG you,your team and race organizer and uci get notified and you cant start another run at any event for X number of days. Your sensor has to be used every run. With your plate and timing chip so you can’t cheat the system
bikerumor.com/hit-impact-detection-device-measures-g-force-to-aid-rider-awareness-of-potential-head-injuries

L@effeffeff:
  • 8 0
 I knew this was coming, Group B era of downhill is just around the corner. There needs to be tech like you said, but also there needs to be a limit on these bikes pretty soon.
  • 1 0
 @inside-plus: I'd say so. What do you think it could be?
  • 3 21
flag IntoTheEverflow (May 18, 2022 at 4:54) (Below Threshold)
 Why not let the riders decide for themselves if they take time off?
Just educate people that if they are concussed, that they will need to take time off.
And save everybody the hassle of regulation and sensors etc.
  • 5 0
 @IntoTheEverflow: because athletes don’t often get to choose for themselves. Their managers and corporate sponsors (essentially their employers) still push them to compete holding their paychecks over their heads. It got to the point in the NFL where there are independent doctors on the sidelines and in the training rooms that determine if / when a player can return after a concussion.
  • 2 1
 @ElDebarge: So no sensors in the NFL?
  • 11 0
 @IntoTheEverflow: a concussed rider should not make this decision. Their brain is impaired
  • 3 0
 @effeffeff: I don't see why a helmet manufacture could just include this in the box: www.tozuda.com

No electronics and dead simple. A bit pricey but perhaps with enough volume the price would go down.
  • 4 0
 @nzmichael: This is why most good concussion protocols aren't based on trauma force alone but take cognitive baselines and retest after a potential concussion event.
  • 3 0
 @IntoTheEverflow: you don’t see an issue with someone without a fully healed brain making decisions about their brain?
  • 2 0
 Just wanted to share this for anyone quite interested in this topic- from the IOC Consensus statement on concussion in sport:

"Furthermore, accelerations detected by a sensor or video-based systems do not necessarily reflect the impact to the brain itself, and values identified vary considerably between studies. The use of helmet-based or other sensor systems to clinically diagnose or assess SRC cannot be supported at this time."

bjsm.bmj.com/content/51/11/838.full

I used to think that helmet technology was the key to preventing concussions too but from what I've been learning in physio school (and getting a bit more exposure to the research & experts in the field), it's not quite as clear cut as big impact = big concussion. For example, many concussion occur from the brain hitting the inside of the skull, not necessarily a big force being transmitted through a helmet into the brain. This is definitely an area of emerging research but the diagnostic accuracy of testing for concussions aren't quite as simple as they seem. From what I understand, the presence of concussion symptoms is the best indicator that a concussion has taken place.
  • 3 0
 Woke up in an ambulance with a concussion last summer, 3 months of nightmares, hallucinations and panic attacks before I started to get better. Something to note, bike helmets are great at protecting your melon, but not so great at preventing concussions.
  • 4 0
 None of it is easy diagnose, currently the easiest/most effective way to determine is to baseline test people prior to an injury, and use re-testing to determine cognitive ability after an impact.
However, this brings along its own set of issues, as testing bias, retention, and recall all play a factor in the baseline, nad re-test.
You can get a concussion from hitting your head on the the cupboard door, and not get one from a big crash on your bike. It’s a really tough science, nd we are only scratching the surface of it.

Most of the time the protective equipment we wear helps, sometimes it’s the cause, there is no clear cut answer for every type of impact, as the issue is your brain hitting the inside of your skull, not usually from the brain hitting the tree or rock…..

Then there are the mental side effects that come along with a brain injury, (aggression, depression, anxiety, loneliness, it’s a long list). It’s why people who have potentially had a concussion will aggressively state that their fine, their own brain is going into a survival mode, and sometimes that mode wants to deny that their is any sort of issue…..
The mental changes that come from concussions, and repeated concussions can be very drastic, and massively impact ones quality of life

Luckily for me my amazingly talented wife is a concussion expert, so I get very good care when I’ve had a nasty fall (which is regularly)
I wish everyone was as lucky, be careful out there kids
  • 1 2
 @mashrv1: Riders can let a doctor have a look at it.
Instead of letting a sensor decide if you have a concussion or not.
  • 3 0
 @IntoTheEverflow: you’ve changed tack now. Is it let the riders choose or have a doctor choose for them?
  • 1 1
 @mashrv1: @mashrv1: I still think the rider should decide.
If your team wants to force you to ride, you can have an independent doctor take a look at it.
  • 1 0
 @onawalk: Didn't know aggressive denial was a symptom. Neither did my doctor!!! Goes a long way to describing why it took me so long to get the care I needed
  • 1 0
 @nzmichael: there’s so much to learn about concussion, it’s a brain injury, and the brain is only concerned with itself. Brian injury is a crazy thing, the aggressive denial makes treatment very difficult.

We still have so much to learn, lots of doctors still prescribe staying awake for the first 24 hours, that was always the concussion protocol when I was younger, which only makes the symptoms worse. Dark room, no screen time, get your rest. Your brain needs to heal, from the bruise you just gave it.

As always, take everything that you read with a grain of salt, whether it’s from your doctor, an entertainment website, or some anonymous PB commentator.

Good luck out there, stay safe
  • 28 0
 I hope Tahnee recovers fully, however much time that takes. And seriously, if you've ever had a concussion you probably know how scary they are, but if you don't, don't f*ck around and find out. If you ring your bell, go to a doctor and prepare to take a minimum two weeks off from any and all high intensity stuff, don't look at a phone/TV screen/computer or anything that makes you focus your eyes. Don't read books. Don't drive. Drink more water than you ever thought possible, eat lots of foods high in Omega-3 (nuts, fish, etc) and f*cking REST. It's going to suck, but it's better than the alternative.
  • 8 1
 Staying hydrated is important but too much water and you'll pee away your electrolytes ending up with the opposite effect.
  • 2 0
 @Fiuz: thanks for that clarification. Yeah, you should be drinking electrolytes. I had a super innocuous crash a few years ago, just slid the front end out on the loamy edge of a corner, but hit hard on my side and bounced my head off the ground. Cracked my helmet and immediately felt off. I ended up spending the next 10 days listening to books on tape and painting bedrooms in my house super slowly to give myself something to do.
  • 3 0
 @Fiuz: Most people are walking around dehydrated. Electrolytes generally aren’t lost by drinking water while not being active. They are lost via sweat, hence taking electrolytes as a binding agent for the water to stay in the body. Eating proper foods and drinking about a gallon of water everyday while resting is key to a quicker recovery.
  • 7 0
 @dualsuspensiondave : But Brawndo has electrolytes. We're supposed to drink water??? Like out of the toilet? Cool
  • 1 0
 Follow a return to play protocol (parachute and McMaster university are good). Don’t rest too long. New research supports light activity (walking, gentle spin on stationary bike) for a better recovery (less symptoms sooner).
  • 3 0
 Best way to stay hydrated is drink your pee. Midstream is best but never cross streams.
  • 14 0
 Yeah i watched the video and wonderd if she was really ok. I crashed in Feb landed on my chest but my bike came down an smacked the back of my fox speedframe, its got a big compression in the back of it, been off the bike for 2 months with concussion issues.
  • 1 0
 Hope you heal up man. It's a scary place to be.
  • 18 0
 Healing vibes Tahnee! Don't rush back
  • 8 0
 Several years ago I crashed hard and suffered a severe concussion. Looming back I realized that felt the effects of it for much longer than I initially thought I did. It's not always easy to see them and to piece together what they connect to. Be good to yourself, Tahnee. Take as long as you need to. We're all cheering for you!
  • 1 0
 Yeah I knocked myself out for 3 minutes once. That was my scariest crash ever. I rather break my collarbones again
  • 18 12
 I bonked unusually hard the other day on a trail I've ridden a million times. I couldn't catch my breath or slow my heart rate down. Was starting to freak out when a nurse happened to hike up and asked if I was OK (by this time I was laying in the grass with my helmet off). I explained that I had ridden this trail a million times but that I felt super weird today, light-headed, dizzy and couldn't catch my breath. Her first question: Have you had COVID and when? She said the long-term effects are all over the place, and that they're seeing anxiety, depression, heart and liver problems, shortness of breath, etc even months after the original COVID infection. Sucks! Hoping Tahnee is OK. Love to watch her race. As for me, the doctor said I need to go slow, but I'm going to hit that trail again tomorrow.
  • 7 65
flag mcozzy (May 17, 2022 at 22:36) (Below Threshold)
 Sounds more like the 'vax' ..
  • 2 1
 How long has it been since you had it?
  • 20 0
 @mcozzy: sounds like you've hit your head a few times too many
  • 3 23
flag mcozzy (May 18, 2022 at 7:22) (Below Threshold)
 @BenPea: pop on yer face muzzle and roll up your sleeve. Again.
  • 6 0
 Wishing Tahnee (and Miriam) all the best in recovery. I know DH mountain biking isn’t a rich sport but i hope they are getting all the support they need to recover properly and aren’t under pressure to resume racing too soon.

I can only imagine the pressure a rider (particularly a privateer) would be under to continue riding and racing under these circumstances and a i can’t help but think we will hear more stories from current and past riders about the impact concussion has had on them as the topic becomes more common to talk about.
  • 6 0
 It's as taboo as we make it....why should it be any different than our physical health....we still have a long way to go to kick stigma. Good for you taking the time Tahnee. It's the people around us and the things we do that make a difference. I'm sure you'll be a stronger person...I certainly am x
  • 10 1
 I saw this crash in a matt jones/bernerd kurr group ride video.
  • 8 0
 youtu.be/ZwBZkKVMlRc?t=360

If anyone was looking for it...
  • 5 0
 @roberthavill: ouch, that's a big jump to come up short on
  • 3 0
 @roberthavill: she's still being checked over at 8.30
  • 4 0
 Crazy how much riding went down in preparation for Fort Bill, in between people doing the previous Ft Bill race and the crazy team training I saw at Dyfi and shit, it's almost surprising there weren't more injuries. People were going HAM on jump lines like these. Hate to see it take out a crowd favorite for a home advantage track.
  • 4 1
 I am starting to wonder if our helmet testing standards are adequate for the pointy end of the field. I don’t know much about them but I seem to recall the difference between mtb and motorcycle standards being that mtb standards are designed for slower speed impacts, and motorcycle standards are for higher speed impacts.

I would imagine if our standards could include some more high speed impact requirements, some of these concussions could be avoided.
  • 4 0
 The top end MTB full face helmet are generally certified to MX standards, if I remember right. Been a while since I looked.
  • 3 0
 It is not testing standards. It is the fact that tracks are getting faster and faster leading to larger, more meaningful impacts when you get it wrong. A new helmet testing regime cannot ameliorate for that.
  • 1 0
 @jmhills: Ameliorate. Fantastic word!

But surely a new specification/testing standard is exactly what's needed, in order to drive progress towards safer racing in light of serious concussion injuries becoming so commonplace due to faster racing/higher consequences? I don't want to see racing neutered, and I want even less to see riders seriously injured, so I really hope that tech can fill the gap.
  • 1 0
 @jmhills: yeah from what I understand the technology simply isn't there to protect you in all types of crashes. You just need ride with a level of risk you are willing to accept
  • 2 0
 It's not that motorcycle helmets are better or tougher than bicycle helmets. Instead, they're designed for different scenarios. Bicycle helmets are optimized at preventing concussions and other injuries when cycling. Motorcycyle helmets would be worse for us because they're taking into account crashes at speeds never seen on a bicycle. Hitting your head at 70mph requires a different helmet than one optimized for half that speed. (A gross simplification of course)
  • 2 1
 @Tambo: It is one of my favorites.

I would agree that a new look at impacts should probably be discussed. As tracks become "flowy" and less technical, speeds are increasing. Bike tech progressing probably has a good amount to do with that as well. A MIPS II, whatever that might be, is probably in order.
  • 3 0
 Its great that riders are coming out when they have had a concussion now. I took the likes of Reece Wilson taking time off to recover to help bring things to the forefront of peoples minds and decisions. Hopefully we see more of this in the future, its definitely a step in the right direction.
  • 3 0
 The more riders that highlight this the better; concussions are still not taken seriously in some sports. The worst thing is to rush back too soon. In fact, in the last DH World Cup race, I recall somebody crashing and landing on their head, got up and carried on......should be an absolute 'no no'.
  • 4 0
 yaeh whatever it takes to heal up from a condition like this,do it…even if it takes the rest of the season. she wants to be on her A game!
  • 2 0
 Best wishes on a speedy recovery to both Tahnee & Myriam.

@Yulely95 We all saw what a concussion can do to one's career. Sam Gaze is a perfect example. Look how long it took him to get back into a form that's even remotely competitive.
  • 3 0
 Also, Anneke Beerten has been doing a lot of speaking out on brain injuries. She got broadsided by another driver and has been fight back since 2019 IINM.
  • 2 0
 Anxiety ain't nothing to stuff around with either. I was a mid 30s guy when I had my first panic attack. I thought they were for wimps, not men like me. Boy was I wrong. It felt like a heart attack. Ambos were called and when said panic attack I was utterly shocked. I still get them occasionally, but CBT and good meds have helped me live with it. Hope Tahnee gets the support she needs to get back up sending it again soon!
  • 2 1
 How about investing in helmet technology that detects the energy of an impact and provides unbiased data on a potential concussion/head injury? That can at least flag the need to go through a visit with an UCI/non-team head doctor that needs to give a green light...
  • 1 0
 How much money do you think should be dedicated to developing that product? Who fronts that cash? Who gets to own the technology once it's developed and profit from it?

Who reviews the data?

How are disputes resolved when a sensor erroneously raises a flag from either malfunction or accident (e.g., dropping the helmet in the pits).
  • 1 0
 There's been a few suggestions of this in this thread a few times but there actually isn't necessarily a neat & tidy correlation between size of impact/trauma and significance of concussion impacts. I'd also argue that helmet technology is light years ahead of what it was only a handful of years ago, yet people are still getting concussions. Many concussions occur from the brain hitting the inside of the skull (versus from forces being transmitted through a helmet reaching the brain, which sensors, biomechanical testing would be addressing). There is a lot of concussion research emerging right now and hopefully the 'answers' are not that far away, but they aren't unfortunately as clear cut as being able to measure helmet impacts as a reliable way to determine if a concussion has occured.
  • 1 0
 Take care of yourself Tahnee, you're making the right call. There will be more races, but you only get one brain. Seems like you're already shifting the scales and allowing others to feel comfortable taking head injuries seriously, and you should be proud to be the brave one that kicked it off.
  • 1 1
 I'm not sure which one she is referring to as a taboo subject, but I disagree with her because we talk about concussion and anxiety all the time. Pretty much the worst two things that have happened to my brain, so I have my radar on when it comes to them.
  • 1 0
 Surprised that the UCI doesn't just port across the proven headcase/irb rules on returning from concussion. Would make rider's less fearful of having to 'make' t he decision as the protocol makes it for them.
  • 3 0
 PLEASE take your time and don't rush it.
  • 1 0
 Concussions are no joke. Way to make the smart move Tahnee!! We'll all be stoked to see you back in action with a number plate on your bike when you're ready.
  • 2 0
 Good on her and her team. At least it shows that some racers have some common sense
  • 2 0
 Ahh man hope she heals up soon!
Literally the article next to this is Myriam is suffering with Concussion symtoms too Frown
  • 1 0
 I hope your body makes a full recovery soon Tahnee, cant wait to see Pretty in Pink on the podium again.
  • 1 0
 Help up! Fans will still be here waiting however long it takes.
  • 1 0
 Damn, that sucks. Best of luck with recovery!
  • 1 0
 Take as much time as you need!! Don't rush it. Sending love and healing.
  • 1 0
 Feel better and take it easy!!
  • 1 0
 Made the right call...I didn't and I deal with it daily.
  • 1 0
 Heal up Kid Smile
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