If you are not an experienced skier, it makes sense to enrol in an appropriate ski school.
The most common cause of injury I see in my practice is incorrect adjustment of the bindings for the skier’s height, weight and ski ability level. Because failure of bindings to release risks injury. So very important to get a bindings fitter who is qualified and who fully understands your height, weight and skiing level. It is important to check that after the bindings have been adjusted that you can see your boot will release fully.
The next most common cause of injuries in my experience is collisions, typically between skiers and snowboarders who have different fall lines. My advice therefore would be to be permanently aware of your surroundings and other skiers and snowboarders to minimise the risk of collision.
So a much more obvious statement is to ski within the limits of your own expertise, i.e. only ski those slopes and runs that you are experienced enough to do. A lot of these runs will be condition dependent, i.e. some runs in good visibility with good snow are easy but in zero visibility or white out or with ice can become hazardous. So act sensibly and choose those runs with conditions are appropriate for your skiing ability.
One final note is based on insurance. When your holiday is booked most people will offer you some form of insurance to cover you for any injuries sustained whilst on the slopes, but often that insurance becomes null and void once you return to the UK if you are unlucky enough to be injured. This means the insurance will only cover you whilst you are abroad and treatment received abroad. Therefore, when you take out a policy for any skiing injury sustained on a ski trip it is important that that cover continues on your return to the UK. Enjoy your safe skiing.
- Simon Moyes consults out of The Wellington Hospital in St John’s Wood, Highgate Private Hospital and 31 Old Broad Street and specialises in arthroscopic and minimally invasive treatment of problems of the knee, shoulder, foot and ankle with a focus on Sports Medicine. He went into full time private practice in 1997.