The ski season is well and truly underway and many of our clients and team are hitting the slopes!! Ben, one of our resident osteopaths from Brighton and Hove, gives us his recommendations for ski injuries, from personal experience!

There is nothing more invigorating than slaloming down a ski slope under crisp blue skies and over fresh fallen snow, feeling the wind in your hair and the adrenaline coursing through your body. All this topped off by the beautiful views and of course the après ski!

However many of you will be all too familiar with the down side to skiing and with like all sports there is a risk of injury. Some of these can be serious and need immediate medical attention so just a quick reminder GET YOUR INSURANCE SORTED, and also check that your covered on the slopes with the RESORTS MOUNTAIN INSURANCE which is normally included with your lift pass but not always so always double check, OK?

Although serious injuries do happen, there are also lots of minor injuries that can occur which some people fear will cause their holiday to come to an untimely parallel stop (sorry)!! But this does not have to be end of your skiing as there are lots of things you can do for minor injuries that will get you back out on the slopes in no time.

I was lucky enough to hit the slopes late January in Bulgaria, I had been looking forward to this holiday for so long and the first day of skiing had finally come. I started on nice easy runs to start with just to ease myself back into it, but unfortunately at the bottom of my first run, I hit some ice which led into a mogul (little bump), I did the splits, both skis came off and I sprained my ankle.

OH NO!!!I hear you cry. Don’t worry I knew this wasn’t the end of my holiday, yes I was annoyed that 20mins into my skiing starting I had injured myself but I had waited far too long to let a sprain stop me enjoying my holiday. 

This is why I want to share with you what I did too ensure that my injury was properly self-treated and allowed me to get back on the slopes the next day.

Firstly, it is advised to get a posture and movement check from us here at Back 2 Balance a month or two before you go skiing so that we can identify any areas of potential weakness and help you strengthen these areas before you even step foot on the snow. Click here for one of our other blogs.

Secondly, once you have established that your arm/leg/ankle etc. is not broken, get some ICE on the area ASAP and yes this could mean packing some snow down your ski boot In the case of an ankle injury (but not directly onto the skin.) And don’t take your ski boot off until you’re ready to go back to the hotel/put your snow boots on. The ice will/snow will help numb the pain but also reduce the swelling immediately. After a pain killing pint, head back to your hotel, take your snow boots off and clean up from the days skiing.

Once all showered and clean, acquire some ice either from the mini fridge freezer in your room, or the hotel bar, wrap it in something e.g. tissue, and apply to the area of pain. Hold it on the area for 10/15mins and then take it off for the same amount of time. Repeat this 3 or four times. 

Thirdly, if your hotel has a pool, NOW is the time to use it. Get into the pool and gently move the injured area, nothing too vigorous but just enough to get some movement through the area. Don’t spend too long working the area, 5/10 mins or so, the rest of the time just relax (you are on holiday after all.) Utilise the sauna and steam room too as the heat will help ease tight aching muscles. 

Fourthly, and this is something I did also, try and find a shop that sells supports for the area, I went to a pharmacy and they had supports and straps for all body parts. This just adds a bit of extra support to the area and gives you that little psychological reassurance.

Repeat the icing as much as you like, as well as step 3. It will help with the movement and pain, and remember, if you have hurt your ankle, you have much more support in the ski boot than not. Take it easy on the slopes; avoid any slopes that you no will require you to 1.feel out your comfort zone, and 2. Listen to your body, if you feel that the injury has got worse or the pain is unbearable then do stop. 

Lastly, when you return from your holiday come in and see us!! Tell us all about your hols but more importantly about your injury and we can get you on the road to recovery even quicker!!