If you’re a skier, you know that injuries are always a risk. No matter how experienced you are, there’s always the chance that you’ll end up with a bruise, bump, or worse. Below, we are discussing five of the most common skiing injuries and what you can do to prevent them. Keep in mind that these tips are not an exhaustive list – be sure to consult with your doctor or another medical professional if you have any specific questions or concerns.

  1. Head Injuries. One of the most common skiing injuries is a head injury. This can include anything from a bruise to a concussion. Regardless of how hard you crash, if your head was hit or injured at all, it requires immediate attention.

One of the best ways to prevent head injuries is to wear a helmet that fits properly and is certified for skiing.

  1. MCL Tear. The Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) is the ligament on the inside of the knee that connects the ends of the knee bones. Its main purpose is to provide stability and to keep the knee from bending fully inwards. An injury to the MCL usually occurs when the ski binding pushes your foot out to the side while you’re skiing. An MCL tear will often cause sharp pain in the knee, and difficulty standing.

The best way to prevent an MCL tear is to make sure your bindings are correctly adjusted. Ski boots should feel snug but be comfortable, with enough room to allow for a ski sock underneath.

  1. ACL Tear or Rupture. The Anterior Cruciate Ligament is located in the center of the knee and controls how far the tibia can move with the femur. ACL injuries can occur in a general crash when the knee is hyperextended or if your knee experiences a sudden turn or stop.

To prevent an ACL tear, try regulating your speed while on the mountain. Try avoiding any abrupt stops or turns as any sudden movements could contribute to an ACL injury.

  1. Wrist Fracture. A wrist fracture is fairly common in skiing, particularly among beginners. During a fall, it is almost instinct to try and catch yourself with your arms. Falling on an outstretched wrist, however, can result in injury.

The best way to prevent a wrist fracture is through proper equipment and technique. Make sure that your gloves fit properly and try avoiding your wrist if you feel yourself falling.

  1. Shoulder Injuries. Shoulder injuries on the mountain are often the result of a bad fall. Depending on how you land, your shoulder bones can fracture or be forced out of place. Shoulder injuries are often extremely painful because of the many body structures the shoulder involves.

The best way to prevent shoulder injuries while skiing is through proper stretching and warm-ups before hitting the slopes. It may seem silly to practice falling, but practicing to fall gracefully in a safe location, is a great way to prepare for the tumbles you may experience while skiing.

Dr. Larson understands how frustrating a sports injury can be. With years of experience in diagnosis and treatment, Dr. Larson excels in helping patients overcome these injuries and return to the activities they love. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Larson, please give us a call at 435-774-8512.