Skiing is a wonderful outdoor activity that can be enjoyed no matter what your skill level is. Still, there are about 45 serious ski-related injuries each year, according to the National Ski Areas Association, so it’s worth going over just how common skiing accidents are and what you can do to stay safe if this an activity you have a passion for.
In General, Skiing Accidents Aren’t Too Common
In the grand scheme of things, skiing accidents aren’t all that common. In fact, CDC data and other stats on the top reasons for emergency room visits in the United States confirm this. The most common reasons for needing urgent care include issues involving headaches, respiratory problems, skin infections, back pain, and chest and abdominal pain. Fractures can also be on this list, but skiing isn’t the only activity that can affect bones and joints.
Certain Types of Skiing Can Be Riskier
World Atlas put together a list of the most dangerous sports. The only type of skiing that made the list was helicopter skiing, which is a type of off-trail downhill skiing where a helicopter essentially does what a ski lift normally does. Other types of skiing are typically done in a way that presents fewer risks.
Specific Injuries Are More Often Associated with Skiing
There are certain types of injuries that tend to happen more often than others when skiing is involved. According to the Insurance Alliance, the most common types of skiing-related injuries involve:
• Run-ins with other skiers
• Ski lifts
• Ski-related gear that’s not right for your skill level or body type
Injuries can also occur when colliding with stationary objects. As for specific injuries related to skiing, the top ones include leg fractures, concussions, wrist and ankle fractures or sprains, and ruptured ligaments. If you’re not bringing your own skis, make sure to find a reliable shop close to the slopes where you can rent skis. Mammoth skiers should rent equipment at the mountain so their skis and the boots are properly fitted to the correct size, which is essential for injury prevention.
Younger Skiers Are More Often Affected
Technically, anyone skiing is susceptible to some type of injury. However, statistics show the majority of skiing accidents involve males under the age of 30. Such accidents usually happen on intermediate terrain.
Injuries Can Be Prevented by Taking Proper Precautions
The Insurance Alliance also notes that alpine or downhill skiers are roughly three times more likely to be involved in skiing-related accidents with other skiers than snowboarders. This is why it’s important to take some sensible precautions while skiing to stay as safe as possible.
When coming to a popular area like Mammoth to ski, stay safe by:
• Getting regular exercise when not skiing to keep your core muscle groups strong
• Using correctly sized ski equipment
• Wearing protective headgear (e.g., a helmet and goggles)
• Considering skiing lessons, which can be taken at Mammoth Mountain, if you’re a newer skier
• Accepting your limits and choosing hills or terrain suitable for your skill level
• Skiing with a friend so you’ll have someone to point out any potential hazards you may not immediately be aware of
• Following any rules that apply to the area where you plan to ski
• Taking regular breaks to give yourself a chance to recharge and regain your focus
If you need advice on how to ski safely, drop by and chat with the experts at ASO Mammoth on your way to the slopes. We have great tips for beginning and veteran skiers alike, and we can hook you up with all the gear you need for an amazing mountain adventure. ASO Mammoth is the place to go for high-quality Mammoth ski rental, equipment, and safety tips from the experts. Come by and see us or give us a call at 760-965-3444.