Snowsport safety strategies include resort and equipment design, trail management, emergency response, and public education. Snowsport instructors are well placed to inform their students about snowsport safety both in the behavior they model and the information they provide. To contribute to the evidence-base of snowsport safety and helmet awareness, this research explores the actual and estimated maximal speeds of ski and snowboard instructors across a normal work-day as well as their knowledge of helmet effectiveness. During winter 2012/13, a convenience sample of 109 instructors was recruited across six resorts in Western Canada and were issued with iPhone 3 s loaded with the Ski Tracks app. An anonymous questionnaire investigated their prior snowsport experiences, their knowledge of snowsport safety, and their understanding of helmet effectiveness. Results indicated that snowsport instructors: (1) underestimated their maximal speeds by 12 km/h on average; (2) overestimated the overall snowsport injury rate as well as the proportion of head injuries; and (3) overestimated the effectiveness of helmets. Based upon these results, if snowsport instructors are to contribute to the knowledge and understanding of the snowsport safety of their students then their own knowledge needs to be developed with regard to helmet effectiveness.
DICKSON, T., & Terwiel, F. A. (2017). Snowsport Instructors: Their Actual Maximum Speeds, Their Estimation of Maximum Speed and Speed in Slow Zones, and Their Knowledge of Helmet Effectiveness. In Snow Sports Trauma and Safety (pp. 175-187). (Snow Sports Trauma and Safety). Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-52755-0_14