Everything we do in life involves a risk. Some risks are greater than others. Even simple daily activities, like getting out of bed, walking down a set of stairs, or driving, expose us to personal harm.
There are a multitude of ways we could die early, but how much of a risk are we taking when we go skiing and snowboarding? It turns out the risk is pretty low, especially compared to some other sports and activities.
The chances of dying while skiing is 1 in 1.4 million, while for snowboarding, it is 1 in 2.2 million.
Of course, your risk could be higher or lower, depending on where and how you ski. For example, a skier in Utah has about a 1 in 406,000 chance of dying. This is likely because of the abundant snowfall and terrain in the area. These factors increase the risk of tree wells and avalanches.
It can be encouraging to know that snow sports have a lower fatality rate than some other notable activities, including:
- Base Jumping (1 in 60)
- Hang Gliding (1 in 560)
- Mountain Climbing (1 in 1,750)
- Boxing (1 in 2,200)
- Dance Parties (1 in 100,000)
- Skydiving (1 in 101,083)
- Bungee Jumping (1 in 500,000)
- Running or Jogging (1 in 1 million)
Two activities that are safer than skiing include playing video games and board games, which both have a 1 in 100 million chance of fatality.
The biggest causes of death in the United States are heart disease, cancer, and stroke. Skiing and snowboarding only reduce those chances. So don’t let the negligible risks keep you from the slopes. Stay with a buddy, ride within your limits, and most importantly, have fun.