Skiing and snowboarding are such fun sports, but like any high-energy, extreme activity do have some element of risk associated with them.
While most snow sports junkies are willing to take minor risks in the name of having some brilliant times doing their sport, at Snowfinders, we know that many people are put-off skiing and snowboarding due to risk of injury.
In actual fact though, to put the level of risk into perspective, according to the National Skiing Areas Association on 28th July 2015, 52 catastrophic injuries occurred at U.S. ski areas during the 2013-14 season. These catastrophic injuries included forms of paralysis, broken necks or broken backs, and life-altering, severe head injuries. This statistic is based on 56.5 million skier visits, which means that the 2013-14 serious injury rate equates to 0.92 per one million skier/snowboarder visits.
Keeping Yourself Safe.
The National Skiing Areas Association recommend that skiers and snowboarders follow the following safety tips. The association advises that all skiers and snowboarders know the code and, therefore, are responsible for following it. The guidelines, on 28th July 2015, are as follows:
Before Hitting the Slopes.
1. Make sure you are in shape and fit enough to ski.
2. Make sure you have proper equipment. Either have your ski or snowboard bindings adjusted at a local ski shop, or rent good ski or snowboarding equipment at a resort.
3. Purchase good quality skiwear with water and wind-resistant fabric. Wind-resistant features include wind flaps, shield zippers, snug cuffs, collars and drawstrings.
4. Wear layers and be prepared for cold weather.
5. Wear sun protection, even on cloudy days. Because the sun reflects off the snow, the rays are stronger than you think.
6. Wear eye protection.
On the Slopes
1. Have a lesson from a qualified instructor.
2. Have control. Be aware of your technique, the terrain as well as the skiers and snowboarders around you.
4. If you end up on a slope that is above your ability level, leave your skis or snowboard on, and side-step down the slope.
5. Complete a warm-up run each day.
6. Drink enough water to keep hydrated.
7. Avoid alcohol.
8. Stick to your limits. When learning to ski and snowboard, you should be smooth and in control.
9. If you're tired, stop skiing.
10. Abide by the following the seven safety rules of the slopes (known as "Your Responsibility Code"):
Your Responsibility Code
1. Always stay in control.
2. People ahead of you have the right of way.
3. Stop in a safe place for you and others.
4. Whenever starting downhill or merging, look uphill and give way (yield).
5. Use devices to help prevent runaway equipment.
6. Observe signs and warnings, and keep off closed trails.
7. Know how to use the lifts safely.
Here at Snowfinders, we are more than happy for people to get in touch with any queries or worries you may have about keeping safe while skiing and snowboarding, or even to share some experiences or advice. Whether you are a seasoned pro or brand new skier, we want you to have as much fun as possible on the slopes, keeping safe and confident! Call us on 01858 466888, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit one of our social media platforms.