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About Stephan Schiffman. Stephan Schiffman.

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Skiboards are alpine skis, usually 80 to 90 cm long, that incorporate conventional ski boots with nonreleasable bindings. They were introduced around the world in the mid-to late s, and the designers and manufacturers assumed that releasable bindings would not be required, because the skis were very short. Several case-control studies have demonstrated a three- to twentyfold increase in the incidence of ankle and tibia fractures for skiboarders, compared to that of users of traditional alpine equipment, with the overall injury rate the same or lower.

Conventional releasable bindings on very short skis may not prevent low transverse fractures of the tibia in forward falls, but they may prevent a spiral fracture of the tibia. The risk of ACL ruptures is markedly diminished among skiboarders when compared to skiers using traditional length skis. For those who chose to use very short skis, a broad selection of compatible release bindings is available.

Nonrelease bindings should not be an option for skis of any length.

Young children were found to have a lower overall injury rate than older children. The reason is multifactorial, but old, poorly serviced, and improperly functioning ski, boot, and binding systems are part of the problem. Young children need the best possible equipment available, which needs to be serviced regularly and appropriately as well as inspected and calibrated according to present standards ASTM F and F Poor boot fit is a major factor leading to lower leg fractures and sprains, especially among children.

Children have a greater risk of these injuries and therefore need the best-fitting equipment. That does not mean buying new equipment every year.

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If it is close to a good fit, then it is back to the shop to have a professional check the boot, binding, ski, and skier to make the necessary adjustments. Another solution is to use a seasonal rental from a shop that is well staffed and properly equipped. Parents should not accept boots that are too large, and they should not try to make up for a bad fit with an extra pair of socks. Skiers who do not have a well-practiced plan for the falls that they routinely experience should imagine the posture of a parachutist just before landing and keep every joint in the body flexed moderately.

Keep feet together. Keep chin against chest. Do not land on a hand, but keep arms up and forward and be prepared to use the arms to protect the face and head. After the fall, skiers who do not immediately stop should get into a position that allows them to see where they are going. Skiers who attempt to stop themselves by engaging their skis should resist the instinct to fully straighten their legs. Almost every ski season, popular skiing magazines publish information on conditioning that can reduce the risk of injury. Several prominent orthopaedic authorities have advocated conditioning to reduce the risk of skiing injuries as well.

Well-prepared skiers will probably get in more runs with less fatigue and will probably be better prepared for the rare emergency requiring strength or endurance. The current ski-binding recommendations are the result of decades of work and research that have culminated in the current process that seeks to minimize both potential failure modes and their associated risks : the failure to release and the failure of inadvertent release. Current binding systems are designed to prevent bending and twisting injuries to the midshaft region of the tibia and not the knee.

In conclusion, research supports current recommendations for optimal binding settings, and there is no proof that lowering the setting would yield a lower ACL injury rate. Rental equipment is generally as safe, if not safer, than new equipment. When new equipment has been properly assembled, inspected, adjusted, and tested in accordance with national and international standards, it is very safe. A skier should have his or her equipment checked by a qualified ski shop at least once per season, if not more often.

The injury rate for rental equipment is higher than that for user-owned equipment because the former is most often used by entry-level skiers. The measured release value should be tested during the season in accordance with US guidelines similar to ISO standards for quality management systems.

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One ski area—based rental shop in New England presented data at the New England Bioengineering Conference in April unpublished indicating that there were no lower leg fractures during the winter of , although 4 were expected based on the prior season. In the fall of the same year, another properly supervised rental facility reported no leg fractures.

Based on the prevalence of lower leg fractures in the general skiing population at the ski area 9. However, the facility experienced no such injuries during that time. In the spring of , the rental shop was dismantled and reorganized by new management using the same types of equipment but without the experimental procedures. The prevalence of lower leg fractures in the general skiing population at the ski area was 4.

Over the next 5 winters ending in the spring of , 9 lower leg fractures were expected at the reorganized facility, with 12 actually occurring. In summary, rental equipment can be as safe as, if not better than, new or user-owned equipment, providing that the ski shop follows applicable standards. Everyone who advises skiers on methods to help reduce the risk of injury should be certain that the advice given is true and accurate. Many of the positions advocated in the preceding 12 statements are simply untrue and have the potential to cause harm.

One or more authors has declared a potential conflict of interest: Carl F. National Center for Biotechnology Information , U. Journal List Sports Health v. Sports Health. Robert J. Carl F. Jasper E. Author information Copyright and License information Disclaimer. This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Abstract There are many commonly discussed myths about ski safety that are propagated by industry, physicians, and skiers. Keywords: skiing injuries, injury trends, injury prevention, unproven opinions, ski bindings.


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Myth 1 Skiing is among the most dangerous of activities As with so many things in life, it just depends. Myth 2 Broken legs have been traded for blown-out knees—a bad bargain Snow sport injuries have been studied at a northern Vermont ski area in an ongoing case-control study for 37 years beginning in the winter of Myth 3 All you need to know is your DIN number and you can adjust your own bindings DIN is a slang term for release indicator value , which is used by the binding technician to inspect and calibrate alpine ski bindings. Myth 5 Formal ski instruction will make you safer In the majority of studies done in North America and Europe, skiing lessons did not decrease the risk of personal injury.

Myth 6 The shorter the ski, the less the torque applied to the leg in a fall—that is, very short skis do not need release bindings Skiboards are alpine skis, usually 80 to 90 cm long, that incorporate conventional ski boots with nonreleasable bindings. Myth 8 When buying boots for children, leave plenty of room for their fast-growing feet Poor boot fit is a major factor leading to lower leg fractures and sprains, especially among children.

Myth 9 If you think you are going to fall, just relax and let it happen Skiers who do not have a well-practiced plan for the falls that they routinely experience should imagine the posture of a parachutist just before landing and keep every joint in the body flexed moderately. Myth 10 Exercise is the best way to avoid skiing-related injuries Almost every ski season, popular skiing magazines publish information on conditioning that can reduce the risk of injury.

Myth 11 Tighter standards that mandate lower release settings will reduce the risk of injury to the ACL among skiers The current ski-binding recommendations are the result of decades of work and research that have culminated in the current process that seeks to minimize both potential failure modes and their associated risks : the failure to release and the failure of inadvertent release. Myth 12 Buying new ski equipment is safer than renting Rental equipment is generally as safe, if not safer, than new equipment.

Conclusion Everyone who advises skiers on methods to help reduce the risk of injury should be certain that the advice given is true and accurate. Footnotes One or more authors has declared a potential conflict of interest: Carl F.

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References 1. Downhill skiing injuries in children. Am J Sports Med. Behavioral risk factors for ski injury: problem analysis as a basis for effective health education. Ability and physical condition in relation to injury risk in downhill skiing. A method for improvement of retention characteristics in alpine ski bindings. School based bicycle safety education and bicycle injuries in children: a case-control study.


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  • Inj Prev. Skiing injuries in children, adolescents and adults. J Bone Joint Surg Am. Alpine skiing injuries in Scandinavian skiers.

    The gun lobby, led by the National Rifle Association NRA , pursues a number of different policies in state legislatures across the country and in Congress, including eliminating permit requirements for concealed carry; expanding locations where guns may be carried; weakening regulation of the gun industry; and overriding duly enacted state laws that limit gun carrying. While each of these policies have different elements, all are united by a core set of dangerous and misleading arguments perpetuated by the NRA that more guns in more hands will lead to increased personal and community safety.

    While gun ownership is certainly one option for home defense, a growing body of data and research shows that owning a gun also increases the risk of a gun-related tragedy occurring in the home. Guns are used far more often in criminal homicides than in justifiable acts of self-defense. In , for every self-defense gun homicide in the United States, guns were used in 34 criminal homicides.