Zipping down the powdery slopes is the ideal winter activity for many people. However, concussions, as well as general injuries, can occur if skiers do not take proper precaution. Understanding the safety concerns of the sport is equally as important as properly fitting equipment.
Explore how to hit the slopes safely with the following infographic.
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Concussion Safety for Skiers and Snowboarders
A skier’s behavior has as much or more to do with safety of the sport as does any piece of equipment.
To help stay safe, follow these tips:
- Keep your distance
Be aware of the other skiers of varying skill levels around you.
- Always wear a helmet
Even though a helmet can’t prevent a concussion, it can help minimize the risk and prevent more catastrophic brain injury, such as skull fracture.
- Ski at your level and ability
For safety, only progress in difficult level slowly
- Be aware of your surroundings
Did you know?
- For every 10,000 people on the slopes, three people will sustain a head injury requiring medical attention.
- 30-50% of head injuries can be reduced by helmets. Helmets may be the difference between a major and a minor injury.
- Alpine skiers are 3x more likely than a snowboarder to be involved in a collision.
- Always stay in control. Be able to stop or avoid other people or objects
- Whenever starting downhill or merging into a trail, look uphill and yield to others
- Observe all posted signs and warnings. Keep off closed trails and out of closed areas
- Don’t drink alcohol or use any drugs that might alter your balance, reaction time, or otherwise interfere with your ability to ride
- If you suspect you’ve suffered a concussion, don’t keep skiing – not even to the bottom of the mountain. Have ski patrol come to you
About Sports Medicine
An athletic lifestyle carries the potential for injury. Whether you’re an elite athlete or a weekend warrior, UPMC Sports Medicine can help. If you are looking to prevent, treat, or rehabilitate a sports injury, our multidisciplinary team of experts can help you get back into the game. If you are seeking to improve your athletic performance, we can work with you to meet your goals. We serve athletes and active people of all ages and experience levels. Our goal is to help you keep doing what you love. Visit our website to find a specialist near you.