Snowboarding head injuries increased from 1000 in 1993
to 5200 in 1997 but what needs to be taken into account
here is that snowboarding became more and more popular during
The stats are that between 1991/2 and 1998/9 there were
285 reported deaths from a total of 426.2million ski and
snowboard days (i.e.: 1 death per 1.49million visits to
the ski area. The death rate for snowboarding is 0.46 per
visits - 34% lower than for skiing which is 0.70.
Biomechanics show that in order to protect the head against
direct impact blow at 30mph, with current available materials,
a helmet would need to be at least 18cm thick, 50cm wide
and weigh 5kg, that's heavy. Most intermediate skiers travel
at between 28 to 34 mph.
injuries and Helmets
10 to 15% of injuries are head injuries: they are usually
minor though, mainly concussion so should they are worn?
Well any degree of risk should be reduced. Helmet sales
in the US are increasing year on year. The standards for
Europe and the US are different. In Europe the Central European
Standard EN1077and UNI EN 812 and in the US the American
Snell RS-98, the American standard being more stringent,
Snell performs a series of impact tests that require a higher
level of impact absorption. The Snell has to withstand 30%
more impact force than the Euro Standard. If you are going
to buy a Helmet: buy one that meets the high standard.
About 25-40% of all slope users are snowboarders. It
has a different injury profile to skiing.
Upper limb injuries predominate usually as a result of falls
onto an outstretched hand. There are a lot of wrist injuries,
especially among beginners: most snowboarders do not wear
wrist guards. Serious spine injuries are also becoming more
injuries and Wrist Guards
Snowboarders incur different injuries to skiers, both
in terms of the areas that get injured and the type of injuries
themselves. Compared to skiers, snowboarders are far more
likely to sustain injuries to the upper limb and less likely
to the lower limb. The amount of fractures is twice as high
amongst snowboarders to skiers -25% to 12.5%. The reason
for this is explained by the design of the equipment and
the way it is used.
The instinctive reaction of a snowboarder is to outstretch
a hand in order to break the fall. A result of this is the
wrist is the single commonest injury area for the snowboarder.
of the broken wrist is determined by whether the bones have
been pushed out of position, whether the break goes through
the line of the wrist joint or whether the wrist has been
broken into different fragments amid whether the bones are
sticking out of the skin. Displacement of the bone fragments
is the most common problem, because of the considerable
25% of all snowboard
injuries affect the wrist, the shoulder being the next most
common site of injury - 12%.
show that 15% of all snowboarders wear wrist guards.
Is there any
evidence that wrist guards reduce the chances of breaking
a study in Colorado showed that those wearing wrist guards
were half as likely to sustain wrist injuries to those that
weren't. Another study in Norway came to the same conclusion
.Burton Tactic Wrist Guards
Wrist Guards can be bought on their own or integrated into
a glove system , unfortunately nearly 25% of snowboarders
are unaware of wrist guards . There is a myth that wrist
guards merely transfer the force further up the arm and
break the bones somewhere else , this is not true
Da Kline guards
Pro-Tec IPS Wrist Guards
Red impact Guard
Guards over Gloves
GTX Biomex gloves
Level Fly GTX Biomex Gloves
This was developed by French doctors which helps carving
turns and protecting the wrist at the same time.