Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
The potential for injury and death - especially from head injuries - was recognized early in the use of bicycles and motorcycles.
Early bicycles with a large front wheel and small rear wheel were notorious for sending a rider over the handlebars from a dangerous height.
Early motorcycle racing, known as board racing around a wood board track, often resulted in spectacular crashes from loose boards and close racing.
Helmets evolved slowly, and initially without scientific basis.
Early helmets used various materials such as pith (spongy material from plants) or leather and served to cushion the rider's head from other objects during a crash. They weren't very effective, but they represented all that was available at the time.
Advances in technology and crash mechanical studies brought improved function and design for bicycle and motorcycle helmets.
Helmet improvements include the shape of helmets, the introduction of plastics, improvement in methods of securing the helmet to the head, and the layering of materials.