Skiing, a thrilling winter sport, comes with its share of risks and potential injuries. From knee ligament damage to fractures, understanding these common ski injuries is crucial for both prevention and effective treatment
Here we’ll explore the 5 most common ski injuries, offering insights into how they can be avoided and treating ski injuries with and without surgery.
- Anterior Cruciate Ligament Injuries
ACL injuries, where the ligament in the knee gets stretched or torn, are a common hazard for skiers. These injuries can occur due to sudden stops, falls, or incorrect landing from jumps.
To prevent them, you should focus on leg strength exercises, proper stretching before skiing, and using correct techniques. If an injury occurs, treatment options range from rest and physiotherapy for minor tears, to reconstructive surgery for complete tears.
Post-treatment, rehabilitation is crucial to regain full knee function and prevent future injuries.
- Breaks and Fractures
Skiing can result in various types of breaks and fractures, particularly in the lower legs, wrists, and arms. These injuries often occur from direct impacts or falls.
Prevention strategies include using the right protective gear, such as padded clothing and helmets, and ensuring you use proper ski techniques. Treatment typically involves immobilising the affected area with casts or splints, followed by a period of rest and gradual physiotherapy to rebuild strength and mobility.
- Shoulder Sprains and Dislocations
Shoulder injuries are typically the result of a fall onto an outstretched hand or directly onto the shoulder itself. These injuries can range from mild sprains to complete dislocations.
Preventive measures include strengthening shoulder and arm muscles and learning proper fall techniques. Treatment may vary from rest and ice for minor sprains to surgical intervention in the case of severe dislocations or ligament damage. This will be followed by rehabilitation for restoring strength and range of motion.
- Wrist and Thumb Fractures
Falls onto an outstretched hand can often lead to wrist and thumb injuries, including fractures and sprains. Wearing wrist guards and using proper gloves can help reduce these risks.
Treatment generally involves immobilisation with splints or casts. This is often followed by a regimen of physiotherapy to help regain dexterity and strength in the hand. Early treatment is crucial to prevent long-term mobility issues.
- Head Injuries
Head injuries, including concussions, can be some of the most serious injuries in skiing. They can occur from falls or collisions.
Wearing a well-fitted helmet is the best preventive measure. If a head injury is suspected, immediate medical attention is crucial. Treatment for concussions involves physical and mental rest, followed by a gradual return to activity under medical supervision.
Treating ski injuries
For many ski injuries, particularly those affecting ligaments and joints, MBST (Magnetic Resonance Therapy) has emerged as a promising treatment. This non-invasive approach uses magnetic resonance to stimulate tissue regeneration and healing.
While not necessarily a replacement for traditional treatments, MBST can complement physiotherapy and surgery, potentially speeding up recovery and reducing pain.