As winter approaches, many people in the greater Cincinnati area will be dusting off their snow skis and boards and getting ready for the first snow. Before you throw on your equipment and head for the slopes, there are some important steps you can take to ensure a safe winter sport season. I recently gave a talk to the ski patrol/ski instructors at Perfect North Slopes in Lawrenceburg, IN. They are a highly qualified group of people and they are currently taking the appropriate steps to provide a safe experience to their customers for the upcoming season.
However, there are several things you can do before you hit the slopes to decrease your chance of injury. First, you must get into shape. Snow sports are a very physically demanding activity. Leg strength and conditioning are essential in preventing injury. Your likelihood of sustaining an injury is greatly increased if your muscles fatigue as you are on the slopes. Plyometric exercises are the best exercises to build strength and endurance in your legs. These are jumping and bounding type exercises that mimic the stress that is put through your legs while skiing and boarding. Other snow sports safety tips:
• Beginners should take a lesson.
• Injuries are more common to beginners and bad habits can lead to injuries in the future
• Have your equipment checked regularly
• Warm up and stretch before skiing or boarding
• Wear adequate clothing for the weather
• Wear a helmet for skiing and boarding. Snow boarders should also wear wrist guards.
• Ski and board with a friend
If you sustain an injury while on the slopes, you should stop skiing or boarding and rest the injured body part. Seek the medical personnel at the ski resort if pain is significant or if you have any questions. Otherwise, ice and elevate the injured extremity and see a physician if the pain does not subside after a couple days.
Snow skiing and boarding are great winter activities. The Perfect North Slopes in Indiana have tremendous facilities and provide a wonderful opportunity for communities in the Greater Cincinnati area. Be sure to enjoy the winter weather.
Dr. Argo’s Snow Sports Safety Tips – Ski Safety Checklist
Dr. Argo’s Snow Sports Safety Tips – Skier’s Knee- Ligament Injuries
Dr. Argo’s Snow Sports Safety Tips – Skier’s Thumb
Dr. Argo’s Snow Sports Safety Tips – Skier’s Tibia (Leg) Fractures