How to Get Up After Falling Down on Snow Skis

How to Get Up After Falling Down on Snow Skis
Falling on snow skis is inevitable. Whether you're a beginner taking a tumble on gentle slopes or an advanced skier setting up for an unexpected yard sale on the steeper terrain, the basic technique for getting yourself back up remains the same. The same technique applies as easily to cross-country skiers as to downhill skiers, with the added bonus that cross-country skiers are less likely to be in deep powder, which makes getting up extra challenging.


Difficulty: Easy

Step 1
Wait until you've stopped sliding before trying to get up. According to the Center for Knee Shoulder & Hip, many ski injuries occur when skiers try to recover or get up while still sliding after a fall.
Step 2
Scoot around so that your skis are downhill from you, pointing across the hill--perpendicular to the slope--so that you don't automatically shoot down the slope again when you try to get up.
Step 3
Bend both knees and bring your feet as close to your bottom as possible.
Step 4
Plant your hand or ski pole uphill from you against the side of the slope. Which one you use will depend on snow depth, consistency and hill slope. Press against the slope. Your ski boots will keep you from flexing your ankles to get your feet beneath you, so instead you are trying to get your body over your feet.
Step 5
Straighten your legs once your weight is back over your feet. Use your poles to stabilize yourself and do a quick check to make sure you haven't lost any equipment, such as goggles, a pole or gloves, before moving on.

Tips & Warnings

If you're trying to get up in powder that's so deep you can't plant the point of your pole and use it to push off, try this instead: Cross both poles at the middle so they make the shape of a plus sign. Lay this flat against the surface of the snow--the extra surface area will distribute your weight much better than the single point at the end of the pole. Grasp the midpoint of the crossed-pole "plus" sign and lean your weight on this to lever yourself back up over your skis.
If you've fallen on flat ground, you can point your skis any direction you like. Instead of pressing up against the slope of the hill, simply plant your arm or ski pole as close beneath you as possible and then press away from it to push your body weight up and over your skis again.

Article Written By Marie Mulrooney

Marie Mulrooney has written professionally since 2001. Her diverse background includes numerous outdoor pursuits, personal training and linguistics. She studied mathematics and contributes regularly to various online publications. Mulrooney's print publication credits include national magazines, poetry awards and long-lived columns about local outdoor adventures.

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