If there’s anything that Olympic athlete Zoe Gillings-Brier has taught us it’s that safety is paramount when competing in an extreme sport such as snowboarding.
Zoe recognises that training to a high level of intensity can put a real strain on your ticker and the importance of safeguarding against cardiac arrest in the same way you would carry a first aid kit to treat a wound or broken bones. For this reason, Zoe reached out to us in search of a life-saving defibrillator to protect herself and her team when on the slopes and travelling to competitions.
If you’re participating in extreme sports it’s useful to familiarise yourself with AED access points at sport centres and gyms as well as develop your understanding of how to treat injuries to protect yourself and others.
But where do you start? Well, the purpose of this blog post is to educate you about different first aid methods to master before you even think about scaling that wall or whizzing down the ski slopes, so first things first....
Sprains and Strains
Soft tissue injuries known as sprains and strains are very common injuries that occur when the ligaments around a joint or muscles and tendons are torn.
Whether you’re going for a morning jog or doing a spot of gymnastics it’s useful to learn about the effects of sprains and strains so that you can rest the injury and treat it successfully to prevent further damage.
Participating in activities with a high level of physical exertion can put you at greater risk of breaking your bones. The impact of falls at a great force or an indirect force such as a twisting motion can result in bones cracking or chipping which is also known as a fracture.
The best thing you can do if you suspect that someone has broken their bone is to make them as comfortable as possible by supporting the injured limb in some cases with the aid of a sling or a bandage. Dial 999 for help from the emergency services team to ensure that they make a speedy recovery.
Wounds and Bleeding
There are many types of wounds and bleeding, some injuries such as abrasions also known as grazes and contusions (bruises) cause very little damage to the skin and can be treated easily with a little TLC. However, some injuries you may obtain such as puncture wounds, incisions and lacerations may leave you open to infection and blood loss.
Objects embedded deep into the skin act as a plug preventing severe blood loss. It’s important to handle them with care by building up bandaging around the cut to seal the injury until a medical professional can treat the injury effectively.
Now this may seem like a strange suggestion. However, far too often we are hearing about people experiencing heart failure during football matches or marathons and dying of a sudden cardiac arrest.
Learning CPR will help you to assist family and friends that collapse during intense workouts, allowing you to preserve their life long enough for the arrival of a defibrillator.
It’s always better to be safe than sorry, by getting up to speed on these essential first aid skills you will have the know how to recognise and treat a range of injuries ready to tackle whatever dangers extreme sport throw at you.
To discover more specialised treatments and learn additional skills to benefit you and those around you, you can download our free and convenient first aid app, simply search for imperative training in your app or Google Play store and get stuck in.