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Top 5 Skiing & Snowboarding Injuries

Risk Factors

Select an injury location on the skier or snowboarder

Based on research evidence, the biggest risk factors associated with skiing and snowboarding injures are:

  • Poorly adjusted bindings
    Research evidence on skiing injuries, particularly injuries in children, suggests that the biggest single factor related to injury is the condition of ski bindings. There is a significantly higher risk of injury to the legs in particular where bindings have not been properly adjusted.

  • Use of Rented Equipment
    Some researchers have suggested that the use of rented skis, boots and bindings, that are not well-adjusted to the individual could increase the risk of injuries. Children often use rented equipment and this may be another factor that contributes to an increased risk of injury in this group.

  • Lack of ski lessons
    The research on the relationship between ski lessons and injury is a little more equivocal, but some studies have suggested that there is an increased injury risk in skiers who haven't had formal lessons. Common sense would suggest that formal learning was a good idea for novice skiers, to allow them to acquire a degree of skiing skill. However there is a counter argument that those who gain skills rapidly can become overconfident and therefore attempt to descend difficult runs that increase the risk of injuries.

  • Skill Level
    Researchers have found that skiers with less skill or experience have a higher incidence of injury compared with more experienced skiers. The injury rate for novice skiers has been reported to be as high as 9 or 10 times that of advanced level skiers. It is difficult to discern whether the risk is increased due to a lack of skill or a lack of experience, although one study suggested that more experienced skiers got less injuries even if their technical skills were not that advanced. It would appear experience teaches skiers to avoid situations where the injury risk is high.
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