On the face of things, skiing is one of those sports that appears utterly ludicrous. You’re perched at the top of a mountain, and about to descend at a hurtling speed back down it. What could possibly go wrong!?
Of course, as the popularity of the sport tells us, there’s far more to it than this. Millions of people hit the slopes every year for very good reason – and if you fall into this increasingly popular group, today’s post is for you.
I’m now going to look at some of the top tips you can implement to ensure that you’re as safe as can be on the slopes, and any risks are reduced.
The obvious one – wear a helmet
This one is a no-brainer. Helmets are mandatory in some skiing resorts, and for good reason. A good helmet can help to reduce the severity of head injuries in the event of a fall. We’ve seen the high-profile cases of skiers being severely injured, or worse, without the use of a helmet – so little else needs to be said on this point, and there’s plenty of evidence that echoes the benefits.
Ski within your ability
It’s important to ski within your ability – don’t try and take on black runs if you’re still a beginner. This is a sure-fire way to increase the chances of having an accident. Start off with the green runs, and once you’ve got the hang of things, move on to the more challenging slopes.
This is where a little prior research can help your trip no-end. After all, some resorts are renowned for their ‘challenging’ nature and having nothing but red and black slopes. Suffice to say, you need to be starting off on greens and blues.
It’s at this point I should state that regardless of your ability, there’s nothing wrong with taking a lesson. For the sake of an extra hour of tuition, it be the difference between safely tackling a red slope or being stuck wishing what could have been on a green.
Keep an eye on the weather forecast
Something else to look out for is the weather forecast. It should go without saying that, particularly if you are just starting out, the last thing that you want to be greeted with is a blizzard.
By the same token, frozen ski runs are no fun (and very dangerous), while warmer conditions are also going to bring their challenges. Before traveling, check the snow forecast for Morzine or your chosen resort of choice to make sure you are going to cope.
Take regular breaks
One of the most interesting parts about skiing is that you don’t feel like you’re getting tired, even though you are out in the freezing cold for hours on end, putting your body through quite the workout.
While it’s great to exercise like this in some regards, let’s also not forget that it can be dangerous. Over time, exhaustion will mean that you start to make mistakes, and these mistakes can be catastrophic in some situations. Whether it’s simply by overexerting a joint or suffering a nasty fall – overdoing it on the slopes can cause either.