Sledding is one of those quintessential wintertime activities that can bring back a flood of happy childhood memories. One of the delights of being a parent is sharing those happy memories with children whether it is a snowy mid-winter afternoon or a sunny spring day.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (Healthychildren.org) has some helpful tips to keep sledding safe no matter the conditions.

Sledding Safety Tips

  • Always keep sledding activities away from motor vehicles.
  • Supervise children while they sled.
  • Keep young children separated from older children.
  • Sledding feet first or sitting up, instead of lying down head-first, may prevent head injuries.
  • As for other winter sports, we strongly suggest having your child wear a helmet while sledding.
  • Use steerable sleds, not snow disks or inner tubes.
  • Make sure sleds are structurally sound and free of sharp edges and splinters. Check that the steering mechanism is well lubricated.
  • Ensure that sled slopes are free of obstructions like trees, fences, or other people, covered in snow (not ice), not too steep, and end with a flat runoff.

Although it’s tempting to enjoy the thrill of speeding down the slope, be a role model for younger sledders on the hill and stay safe.

And remember, you’re never too old to become a child again, even if just for an afternoon!

The University of Vermont Medical Center Trauma Center can be reached at 802-847-3790. We offer excellence in trauma surgery, burn-related surgery, and surgical critical care. As Vermont’s only Level I Trauma Center-and the first in the U.S. to be verified for both children and adults, you can be assured that you and your family have access to the most advanced trauma surgery and surgical critical care available in the event of a serious injury or accident.

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