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Main Basics Safety and Injury Prevention

Snowboarding Safety and Injury Prevention

For most people, the mountains present a foreign, yet uniquely beautiful environment where snowboard enthusiasts venture to experience the rush of riding down
the slopes and perhaps temporarily escape from the pressures of life.

While you are out snowboarding on the mountains, it's important to understand the dangers associated with the sport. The nature of snowboarding is such that there will always be risks involved for beginners and advanced riders alike.

Being aware of the risks involved, however, and taking the necessary safety measures will minimize the possibility of any unfortunate accidents occurring, thereby maximizing the time you have to spend on your favorite sport.

Avoiding Burnout

Due to the addictive nature of snowboarding, you may find yourself wanting to completely squeeze every possible second of the day into getting on as many runs as possible. If this applies to you, especially if you're a beginner, it's best if you pace yourself and take as many breaks as you need to refuel lest you suffer some unbearable aches and pains later in the evening.

Maintaining Your Energy

Your body works hard to keep you moving especially at higher altitudes. When your energy levels are completely exhausted, your body becomes fatigued and unable to generate the necessary heat to keep you warm. When this occurs, you run the risk of becoming hypothermic which is even more serious than it sounds.

Hypothermia causes people to suffer from slow and irrational behavior while exhibiting symptoms of dizziness and sleepiness. In the most serious cases, it may even lead to a complete shutdown of all bodily functions resulting in death.

But, of course, you'll never have to worry about that as long as you keep a constant check of your energy reserves and
make sure you replenish your fluids by drinking constantly to prevent dehydration while keeping your energy levels up with regular food intake.

Safety Equipment and Accessories

The following is a list of items which you should consider using to minimize the risks associated with snowboarding.

  • Wrist Guards. Wrist injuries are the most common of all snowboarding injuries. This is the first safety item you should get if you're a beginner.
  • Sun-screen. To provide protection from the sun and prevent sunburn on sunny days.
  • Sunglasses/Goggles. Good-quality eye-wear will provide protection from the sun's ultraviolet rays on sunny days.
  • Helmet. To prevent head injuries.
  • Padding. If you're not quite confident yet with your skills, wearing some padding on the knees, elbows and bum area will help to absorb the impact of your falls.

Snowboard Accidents

If the unthinkable happens and an accident occurs, first stay calm and do not panic. Make sure that the injured person is not left alone at any time and do not attempt to move them unless it is absolutely necessary.

Place two snowboards or skis in a crossed pattern in the snow above the victim and stand by to alert other snowboarders and skiers in the area.

Send a couple of people (from your group or passers-by) to the nearest lift base and ask the the staff to alert the ski patrol. When the ski patrol arrives, provide details of the accident, injuries and the exact location of the injured person.

Recommended Reading

For more information on safety while snowboarding, please see our articles on How To Dress For Snowboarding, Finding Your Way Around Resorts, Tips For Your First Day and Snowboard Equipment.

Snowboard Equipment
Jackets & Pants
Stomp Pad & Leash
Snowboarding Basics
Snowboarding Styles
Dressing In Layers
Establishing Your Stance
Taking Lessons
Resorts Guide
Safety Tips
Learn To Snowboard
First Day Tips
Maneuvers For Beginners
Key Movements
Your First Turns
Riding In Powder
Freestyle Tricks
Backcountry Riding
General Information
History of Snowboarding
Skiing vs Snowboarding
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