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2nd broken arm in one year

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Backstory...

I broke my left arm in February (distal fracture of the radius - non displaced). The conditions were icy caught an edge (darn tahoe conditions last year) and slammed into the ice breaking my arm. This year, was skiing in the early conditions and caught another edge and went forward breaking my right arm (distal radial fracture - displaced ... ugh pins).

At one level it's a little strange having to explain to people that I've broken both of my arms skiing -- not snowboarding. I'm now a little curious about the rate of injury for arms in skiing.

Question....

My real concern is how to prevent this, outside the obvious case of don't ski somewhere you might catch an edge and fall hard. The "joke" in the house is that I need to learn how to fall since clearly I have a tendency to extend my arms. And/or is there any technique or balance issues that would effect how I land when I do catch an edge... won't be the last time.
post #2 of 13
Let's focus on the cause rather than the response. What's your definition of "catch an edge"? You seem to talk about it like it's a common thing, so it may speak to an issue with the way you ski -- ie, balance or stance. What's your skill level? Are you centered over the skis, ie, not in the backseat? Do you ski in control?
post #3 of 13
I have some Burton gloves with removable wrist guards, my wife has some DaKine with fixed guards. I also have wrist guards for roller blading, they are difficult to squeeze into ski gloves. Burton also makes a pretty cool looking glove called the Impact with wrist guard and carbon fiber knuckles. Burton does make nice gloves. I use them for skiing as well as boarding.
post #4 of 13
Seriously you need to learn to fall.

#1 reason this happens (broken wrists and arms) is a skiers unwillingness to accept the inevitable fall, and fight for control.

If you feel yourself in a likely fall, give in to it. If you are falling forward, roll your shoulder and fall from your side, rolling to your back, bringing your feet over.

If you are falling backwards, sit down and turn sideways while turning your skis horizontal to the run, keep your elbows in.

If all of that is too much to remember, then just remember this whenever you fall: Elbows In, Tuck Your Chin.

Its a great rule I learned jumping out of airplanes in the army, and it works very well for falls when skiing wether on water or snow.
post #5 of 13

if you are a young guy

get your bone density checked
post #6 of 13
Any good martial arts club can teach you how to do a breakfall. This might give you an idea, but you need to learn it from someone, not just read about it. Do not try to stop yourself from hitting the ground by sticking a hand down. Fall and slap the ground with the inside of your forearms. Do an imitation of superman flying if you double heel eject. Fall on one side or the other if backwards trying to hit the ground with your forearm as you hit the ground. Protect your head and your spine.

Rolling might not be such a good idea at high speeds.

Remember to never give up and use whatever you can to deflect your path so as to avoid other skiers or hard objects.

It wouldn't hurt to get your bone density checked.

Stop catching edges!
post #7 of 13
Skis go out from under you ... like sudden ice ... wham .. break the fall (judo style) ... helmets anyone?

Pitch forward tumble ... get "small" and pray ... tuck up ... and then after the first roll ... pray you can get boots and skis down hill and start the arrest.

In any case, you also need to keep your thumbs around your poles .. and not spread your hands open however .. unlike judo .. jammed thumbs take a long time to heal. Don't ask ... and it wasn't skiing.

post #8 of 13
If I were catching an edge as often as you do, I'd either slow down or analyze the issues. I'm not sure I'd want you to teach me to ski!!

http://forums.epicski.com/showthread.php?t=62021
post #9 of 13
I broke my right leg while skiing twice within 10 months (femur and tibia), but have been injury-free for almost five years now.
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by skier219 View Post
Let's focus on the cause rather than the response. What's your definition of "catch an edge"? You seem to talk about it like it's a common thing, so it may speak to an issue with the way you ski -- ie, balance or stance. What's your skill level? Are you centered over the skis, ie, not in the backseat? Do you ski in control?
It has to do with the conditions that I was skiing in both times.. You know those moments when your out and scrape your bottom against a rock. Or see the tip of a tree poking out of the snow, known darn well that the tree is only 18 inches tall. Now take that and make it more of an slalom course you'll discover that those clinks, bangs and tweeks that your skis are telegraphing are not uncommon.

Fundamentally, I'm skiing to aggressively for the conditions that are around me. That's my personal issue with wanting a bit more of a challenge than just hanging out and linking turns. In general I consider myself a PSIA Level 8 skier when I get a PSIA Level 3 instructor to give me pointers, it not usually stance oriented but more focused on getting the tips engaged a little early in my turns (foot/ankle pressure).
post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post
Any good martial arts club can teach you how to do a breakfall. This might give you an idea, but you need to learn it from someone, not just read about it. Do not try to stop yourself from hitting the ground by sticking a hand down. Fall and slap the ground with the inside of your forearms. Do an imitation of superman flying if you double heel eject. Fall on one side or the other if backwards trying to hit the ground with your forearm as you hit the ground. Protect your head and your spine.

Rolling might not be such a good idea at high speeds.

Remember to never give up and use whatever you can to deflect your path so as to avoid other skiers or hard objects.

It wouldn't hurt to get your bone density checked.

Stop catching edges!
Judo... not being really aware of martial arts, is it possible to just go to learn how to fall, not really learn the "art"?

The ortho doc said after surgery was quoted as saying "strong bones" which given the drill hole that I see in the xray gives me some feeling of confidence that it's not a bone density issue (direct measurement).
post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonni View Post
If I were catching an edge as often as you do, I'd either slow down or analyze the issues. I'm not sure I'd want you to teach me to ski!!

http://forums.epicski.com/showthread.php?t=62021
Here's the funny part... I got clearance to teach from my doctor, with a no-ski caveat. So, I've been assigned to the 3 year olds -- which is it's own kind of fun. But, while the risk of falling is reduced, I'm finding that I spend a few hours a day picking up 3 year olds. Which is probably not what the doctor wants either (next appt is in a week...)
post #13 of 13
I'm sure a good instructor would let you "tag along", but why not learn a few simple throws and holds while you're there? Any club that does not make allowances for your injuries is not worth your time.
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