Collisions on the slope: A risk for skiers and snowboarders

Whether you prefer to ski, snowboard or ice skate, there are plenty of sports options in winter for you to try. However, the joy of being able to do this when the season comes shouldn't outweigh the necessary steps you need to take to stay safe and avoid injury.

Last October, the National Ski Areas Association reported 45 "catastrophic injuries" from the 2015 and 2016 season for skiers and snowboarders. Of these, nearly three quarters of injuries (74 percent) were due to collisions with people on the slope or (excluding automobiles).

The source referenced a study from six years ago claiming general injuries from skiing and snowboarding were decreasing, but also said collision rates between two people had not dropped significantly in the past 10 years.

Because of this, anyone participating in winter sports might need to prepare on two fronts. First, it helps to physically prepare, with helmets being especially crucial. Another important piece, though, is the mental preparation: specifically, knowing the right way to act on the slope and staying alert, even in the midst of heavy action.

For example, you could take part in a training session if your skills are rusty and brush up on the proper way to handle challenging hills. The Varsity also advised athletes to keep themselves from trying something too ambitious or take unnecessary, possibly harmful risks. Finally, it's important to plan out activity so you're in your best shape, which includes practicing and taking breaks to rest.

You may not be able to prevent every possible collision, but working with a chiropractor can help sort out any lingering back problems you bring home from your ski or snowboard trip. Whatever your sport of choice, contact us today, and you can gain support dealing with common (and not-so-common) injuries.