Skiing and snowboarding provide outstanding ways to stay active during the winter months. The two sports that are enjoyed by people of all ages are similar in some ways but very different in others. Skiing sends you down the slopes in a forward-facing position, for the most part.
Individuals who snowboard are positioned in a sideways fashion that mimics skateboarding or surfing. The differences in stance alone mean that completely different muscle-movements are required to get down the mountain safely.
We know a thing or two about snowboard injuries. Most of them involve trauma to the knees, wrists, shoulders, or head.
Causes of snowboard injuries include:
- Low skill level
- Lower skill level put to the test on more rigorous runs
- Improper equipment
- Continual "play" without adequate rest in between runs
Common Snowboard Injuries
Thumb, Hand, or Wrist
Wrist fractures are some of the most common injuries that occur amongst snowboarders. This is because it is only natural to put your hands out to brace for impact when you fall. However, the force of impact can break the delicate bones in the wrists. At the very least, catching yourself on your hands could cause wrist sprain, even torn ligaments.
Falls cannot be predicted, but you can plan for them, just in case. Wrist guards can protect the structures of this area, as can making fists if a fall occurs.
Depending on the landing of a fall, the shoulder may be fractured, dislocated, or separated. While it is possible to wear protective gear, some experts recommend simply learning from an experienced coach how to fall properly. There really is such a thing!
Injury doesn't have to be a natural by-product of taking on the slopes. Some ways that you can decrease your risk include:
- Take a few lessons.
- Dont' hit the slopes without warming up first.
- Be aware of your surroundings, including rocks, trees, holes, and other people.
- Wear protective gear.
- Know when to take a break.