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Research Christmas 2008: Music

Head and neck injury risks in heavy metal: head bangers stuck between rock and a hard bass

BMJ 2008; 337 doi: (Published 18 December 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;337:a2825

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A injury personally recieved whilst Head Banging

I can personally testify to the dangers of this dance form. Four
years ago I was frequenting a heavy metal venue in Birkenhead, Wirral,
England. The Disc Jockey started playing 'Cowboys From Hell' by a band
called Pantera. This is a high tempo track from their album of the same
name, and is always a 'floor filler'. A few of my drinking partners and I
started Head Banging quite vigorously. It was during this attempt to be
'more metal' that my head forcibly collided with one of my drinking

The result - as is to be expected - was a mutual bout of
unconsciousness for an undetermined period of time. Although I sustained
no obvious injuries, my drinking partner was not so lucky. He received a
moderate sized lesion to his fore head, which upon further examination, it
was decided my drinking partner would be better off in the care of the
local accident and emergency department. Alas, as I elected to try and
continue my evenings merriment, I am unaware of how this incident was
recorded statistically. Also, incidently, I was barred from the partaking
of alcoholic beverages for the rest of the night, in case I had suffered a

The injuries I have sustained in 'Mosh Pits' have - fortunately -
never required any form of treatment.

Competing interests:
I am an avid fan of most forms of rock music, particularly Heavy Metal.

Competing interests: No competing interests

28 December 2008
David J White
Healthcare Assistant
Royal Liverpool University Hospital L7 8XP