It is no secret that today’s parents are obsessed with protecting their kids. Child seats, bike helmets, and indeed seatbelts would have seemed alien objects for me as a child. In the picture above I am a ten-year old racing in a GS event with no helmet. My mom would be arrested today. As a kid I wandered in the woods at the age of five with little thought of danger or getting lost. The question I ask myself, as I strap my five-year old into his car seat, are we protecting or coddling them. I suspect a little of both. Though I am by no means advocating the elimination of helmets, seatbelts, and car seats, I would suggest that we let our kids explore the dangerous side of life. Back to the picture above; I love the juxtaposition of sheer terror and exhilaration. As an adult I avoid stressful situations like a ski race…the ten-year old me was certainly more courageous than the current me. I would like to have that feeling found in the picture again…..ski race anyone?