Coach Wilderness 1st Aid

November 9, 2014

Our athletes spend most of their time on the snow challenging gravity and pushing their limits. We know that risk is part of our sport. We work diligently before, during and after the season to condition and physically prepare our bodies. We keep safety as the cornerstone to decision-making on the hill. There’s times when we push hard, and times when we back off.

Despite preparation, concentration and a focus on safety, injuries happen. Although we strive for and hope for the best, we recognize we need to be prepared for the worst. With that in mind, alpine, freestyle and snowboard coaches attended a two-day Wilderness First Aid course so that we can provide the best possible care for our athletes should an injury occur.

Topics covered included assessment of scenarios, stabilization of orthopedic injuries and moving patients. Respiratory, circulatory and neuralgic issues were covered in depth with a special emphasis on hypothermia, concussion, shock and spinal injuries. Wound and burn care along with frostbite and allergic reaction were also covered. The coaching staff feels confident in their figurative pound of first aid skills should our ounce of prevention fail.

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Above, coaches practice moving injured patients using straps.
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In this practice scenario, coaches tend to an injured skier by making him comfortable and protecting him against hypothermia.
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Nordic Coach Nellis shows us a fake head injury that was used as part of a practice assessment
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Coaches fashioned a “loom splint” using sticks, straps and cord to stabilize a lower leg injury as the patient is evacuated using a strap system transport pack.
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Coach Kimble checks his email while his arm and leg injuries are splinted.
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Coach Johnston play-acts with a very dirty arm injury which was soon cleansed by his fellow coaches.

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