Wrist Fracture

One of the most frequent snowboarding injuries is fracturing your wrist. The natural response to a fall is to stretch out a hand to break the fall creating a large impact force into the wrist. When both feet are fixed to the same board, you cannot regain your balance easily by stepping out with one foot as you can on skis. This means that until you have mastered your balance on a snowboard, falls will be more frequent. Falls tend to occur more often in beginners so wearing wrist guards, learning to fall correctly, and trying to keep your arms out of the way will help prevent wrist fractures. Balance training and increasing one’s awareness in space has also shown to decrease falls.

Tailbone Fracture

Your tailbone, also known as the coccyx, is a triangular shape bone located at the base of your spine. Fracturing the tailbone is a common injury in snowboarding because even the most experienced snowboarder has a high-impact fall on the rear from time to time. If you have a tailbone fracture, sitting can be painful because of the pressure on the base of the spine. You may notice bruising in the buttocks region, as well as swelling and a deep aching sensation. You may experience a sharp stabbing pain when you move from a sitting to standing position. The pain will also be present during bowel movements and sexual intercourse. The pain from a tailbone fracture can range from mild discomfort to severe. Pads and protective shorts reduce the impact on your tailbone during falls.

Snowboarder’s Ankle

Snowboarder’s Ankle is a common term used when one of the bones of the ankle, the talus, fractures. The talus is located deep in the ankle above the heel bone and joins with the shin bone above it to form the ankle joint. When the ankle is 'dorsiflexed' (toes are brought toward the shin), the talus gets locked in place by the surrounding bones. If a snowboarder dorsiflexes their foot and rolls the ankle outwards, the talus gets compressed in between the heel and the outer ankle. The snowboarder’s fracture occurs because of sudden upward movement of the foot, combined with the foot turning inwards. With sufficient force, the talus will fracture. This injury typically occurs when landing from a jump. Wearing softer boots gives the snowboarder more flexibility, but allows for susceptibility to this kind of injury. Pain is present on the outer side of the foot and ankle, and is often associated with swelling, bruising, and significant tenderness to touch. Recognising this injury as early as possible can help reduce the likelihood of subsequent ankle joint degeneration and resulting functional disability. The use of a wobble board to enhance balance and proprioception can help to prevent ankle injuries by improving proprioception and ankle stability.