As the winter season approaches each year, the option for snow sports shines among countless winter activities. Yet the threat of injury looms heavily over many. In this article we will dive into the true cost of snowsports. Is skiing safer than snowboarding? Should you be worried about injuries? What have real skiers said about the dangers of skiing?

Researchers at John Hopkins University estimate that there are around 600,000 reported injuries yearly due to skiing or snowboarding. At first, this number seems massively concerning, but compared to how many people ski annually, the percentage is minuscule. According to, 18.11 million people participated in skiing in 2021, and 7.96 million in snowboarding in 2021. This brings the injury rate to 2.3%, which accounts for all injuries. When you look at the death rate of skiing, says it is 1 in 1.4 million, or 0.00007%. Looking at these statistics, the dangers of skiing are little to none, and though the injury rate is relatively high, there is no reason to be worried about death when participating in good natured fun skiing down the white snow slopes.

Though these statistics seem promising, real world experience may say otherwise. When asking Sam Lutzker ’27 (a member of the Boys Ski Team) about his dangerous experiences with skiing he answered, “Personally I have once fell and broke my thumb along with a few other minor falls, but I have not had any major damage.” Sam also mentioned that his friends and father had experienced worse injuries. “I was once skiing in the woods with my 12 year old friends who were really advanced skiers. They got caught on a tiny jump, fell, and broke their arms. Unfortunately, they were out for the rest of the season.” Sam concluded, “Anyone can get hurt no matter their level.”

As for snowboarding, the sport has a death rate of 1 out of 2.2 million, which is even lower than skiing. But does it really make a difference? According to the article Is Skiing More Dangerous Than Snowboarding, Or Vice Versa? on, “Snowboarders are more likely to suffer ankle and head injuries, and are less likely to be killed in an accident.” When it comes to these different snowsports, experts seem to agree that the level of danger is relatively equal, but different types of injuries occur in the two sports. When asked about his snowboarding experience, Carey Cai ’25 said, “Snowboarders hate when their butt hits the ground.” Carey did not give further explanation, leaving us to question whether this was a personal hatred toward landing on your rear.

It seems that the risk of snowsports is not as high as some may have thought, with an incredibly low rate of death. At the end of the day, it is up to your own discretion to try out snow sports. Have some fun, don’t worry about it too much. Most likely you will come out of it with only a few minor tumbles into the soft powdery snow.