Jan 04 2017

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Skiing injuries then and now

By Ross Forbes, National Director (ross-forbes@outlook.com)

Recently a copy of a 1973 article from the Journal of Sports Medicine (Ian M.F. Arnold, C.F.D. Ackman – Skiing injuries in Canada: A coast-to-coast study; Am J Sports Med January, 1973 1 31-33) was forwarded to me and it makes for an interesting read. Ian Arnold was also the recipient of CSP Award No. 278. Back then the CSP collected and evaluated ski accident statistics (snowboarding wasn’t even on the radar at the time). Mind you, in those days the accident report form was three inches by six inches (press hard, you are making four copies). Patrollers also completed separate control forms on random members of the skiing public to provide a comparison to those who were injured.

Interesting tidbits: T-bars were the most commonly used lift, followed by rope tows. There were also J-bars, poma tows, single and double chairs and pony tows. Snowmaking had been installed on 15 per cent of the trails surveyed and seemed to correlate to a higher injury rate on those trails. Seventy percent of injuries involved the lower limbs. Binding types included bear trap, toe release and heel-toe release, all with one or two point safety straps to prevent runaway skis.

In the April, 2016 issue of 5/5, an article discussing a recent Ontario government study about outdoor snow recreational activity accidents appeared. This was interesting as the CSP no longer keeps accident statistics. It makes for an interesting comparison.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.skipatrol.ca/5by5sur5/skiing-injuries-then-and-now/

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