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Rodeo vests: Adequate safety devices?

Riders increasingly wearing protective gear but to unknown benefit, study shows

Updated: June 19, 2011, 10:07 AM ET
By Paula Lavigne | ESPN.com

When a bull rider enters the chute at a rodeo and grips his legs around a snorting, penned-up bull, the rider is essentially an NFL quarterback lining up in street clothes and a soft-padded vest facing defensive linemen weighing 1,800 pounds -- each.

Rodeo athletes get injured or die at a higher rate than athletes in any sport. Over the past two decades, bull riders -- the most injury-prone of any rodeo competitors -- have added helmets and protective vests for their rides in an ...

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