Adventure Sports Safety

Also known as extreme or alternative sports, adventure sports are hugely popular among those who love seeking an adrenaline rush. They involve a certain amount of danger being risk-orientated, and it is this danger that is so appealing to enthusiasts. Many travellers choose their destinations because of the alternative sports on offer, with snowboarding, white water rafting, and bungee jumping being popular.

The down side of such sports is the potential for injury. Cuts and bruises pale into insignificance when compared to fractures and muscle damage, and injuries can cut a holiday short and result in medical evacuation. Taking a few precautions may be tedious but will ensure that holiday enjoyment lasts until that final flight home.

Bungee Jumping

One of the most popular adventure sports this century, bungee jumping, gives an adrenalin rush like no others, and thrill seekers have safely thrown themselves off bridges, waterfalls and cliffs attached to just a piece of elastic. The risk of injury is always present, so make sure that equipment is checked properly before a jump and ensure that more than one connection is used to hold the jumper.

The bungee site should be free of obstacles and those supervising the jump must be experienced. First aid and rescue equipment should be on hand, and basic training must be offered before the jump ... and it goes without saying that anyone planning on making a jump should be checked by a doctor beforehand, to make sure they are physically fit enough for the challenge.

Skiing and Snowboarding

Involving high-speed adventure on the slopes, snow sports expose participants to various dangers and many thrill seekers put themselves at risk by being unprepared or lacking basic knowledge. Being reasonably fit for snow sports reduces the threat of injury as does being honest about one’s abilities and not overestimating experience.

Make sure that equipment is chosen carefully and ask for advice if unsure. Avoid eye damage by choosing suitable sunglasses or goggles and keep the body warm with a suitable hat, gloves or mittens, and a sturdy waterproof set of trousers and jacket. Wear an avalanche beacon in Alpine areas and never ski away from civilisation. Taking breaks and avoiding skiing or boarding when tired will lessen the chance of injury occurring.

Water Sports

White water rafting, great white shark diving, and canyoning are all heady experiences guaranteed to get the heart pounding and that all-important adrenaline ‘buzz.’ Make sure those companies offering these sports offer full training, harnesses, and suitable headgear and that an instructor is always present. Look for businesses with qualifications and recommendations and avoid any where equipment looks shoddy and uncared for.

There are many more adventure sports on offer and basic principles apply to all. It goes without saying that all extreme sports should be fully supervised with first aid and CPR certified guides or instructors. Businesses should hold a licence and adequate insurance and guides should possess knowledge about the terrain. If in doubt, look for an alternative company.

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