The winter sports season is well underway with only a few more days to wait until one of the biggest tournaments in the calendar. The athletes have been training hard since Vancouver, with many new athletes coming onto the scene and looking to prove themselves on the world stage.
Professional snowboarders and skiers have been training hard in
anticipation of one of the biggest tournaments in their careers and a
chance to compete at the highest level for the biggest prizes.
sports are designed to be an adrenaline rush for both participants and
spectators but can equally be high risk in the event of a fall or crash.
There have been some high profile athletes succumb to serious knee
injuries in recent months and as a result with not be able to compete
for glory next month.
Each sport has its own set of common
injuries and skiing and snowboarding are no different covering ankle
injuries, knee injuries and wrist injuries. This article looks at some
of the most common forms of injuries sustained on the slopes by both
professionals and amateurs alike.
referred to as Snowboarders Ankle this form of injury is where a
fracture occurs on the outside of the Talus bone of the ankle. The
fracture occurs following a high energy ankle sprain and whilst painful
it can sometimes be very difficult to diagnose due to it failing to show
up on x-rays.
If you continue to feel pain following a bad sprain
of the ankle then you should speak with a clinical professional as a CT
scan may be required in order to detect the damage and offer a
diagnosis to the problem. The treatment for any injury is determined by
its severity, with ankle breaks sometimes being treated through bracing
and immobilisation and surgery.
common knee injuries sustained on the slopes refer to the ACL (Anterior
Cruciate Ligament) which is one of four ligaments responsible for
stabilising the knee joint. The ACL is located at the front of the knee
and is the main ligament within the joint helping to manage
stabilisation, without which an athlete may find it difficult to walk,
run and jump let alone being able to pull off a few tricks on the
The severity of the ACL injury will ultimately dictate
your course of treatment and the length of time you would expect to sit
on the sidelines recuperating. Mild knee injuries of this nature can
heal naturally with rest, using ice to help manage any inflammation and a
soft knee support to apply compression and stability to the joint
Where the ACL has ruptured or torn, and one of
the most serious knee injuries who can encounter, there are two options
available to patient. The first is to remain ACL deficient and build up
your quad muscles which can work to counteract the instability of the
knee joint. This is not always practical for someone who wants to
continue with skiing or snowboarding but can be quite normal for some
sports stars to continue without surgery. Surgery is of course the
alternative and typically involves replacing the ligament with a graft
taken from either the patella or hamstring, from which intensive
physiotherapy is required in order to rebuild strength in the joint. A
knee support can also be worn from a preventative measure to protect the
joint from injury as a well as post injury to preserve the joint from
subsequent damage in the future.
injuries typically occur as a result of impact damage as we will all
naturally put our hands out to cushion a fall, which are more common in
snowboarding than in skiing. The main fractures experienced are Scaphoid
and Colles fractures and account for over 100,000 wrist injuries
worldwide each year.
You will invariably know you have done
something serious to your wrist as the swelling of the joint will happen
pretty quickly, as well as being quite painful. A doctor or clinician
will be able to determine the extent of the break and the necessary
Regardless of your chosen
sport it is important to have the right gear to maximise your enjoyment
of the sport as well as protecting you from injury. Ski equipment can
be expensive when factoring in the need for clothing, accessories and safety gear before you even start looking at buying a set of ski's or a snowboard.
the right ski equipment is important as with any other item of clothing
as the wrong sizes or poor quality can have an adverse effect on your
experience or your personal safety. From a safety perspective there are a
variety of products available on the market to help protect against
injuries from falling or hitting obstacles.
A knee support is an
injury prevention tool worn by many a professional on the slopes..
Specially designed supports are built to withstand impact damage to help
prevent knee injuries such as ACL ruptures and tears. Typically
manufactured from lightweight materials such as Carbon Fibre they are
light and strong which gives athletes the flexibility to ski or
snowboard normally knowing they are protected in a fall.