How can we prevent injury from snowsport terrain park falls?

Freestyle snowsports are gaining popularity, not just with recreational snow enthusiasts, but also in competitive sport. Events like the half-pipe are now included in the Olympics and on the World cup circuit, but with increasing popularity comes increasing injury risk. Professor Tracey Dickson and her colleagues at the UC Research Institute for Sport and Exercise (UCRISE) are conducting a study into the etiology (or causes) of injuries resulting from falls in terrain parks. The primary research question is: “What strategies could be implemented to reduce the frequency and/or severity of falls and injuries in large terrain parks?” This project will draw on the expertise of a multi-disciplinary team, with backgrounds in sports science, health and IT, and will also investigate the most effective way of communicating injury prevention and risk management strategies to those who might be affected. snowboarder-crash-and-burnA mixed methods approach will be used. Focus groups will help researchers understand how terrain park users currently learn about safety, and videos of falls will be reviewed by an expert panel to explore the events that can lead to a fall. Additional analysis of videos will consider how new software could assist in the analysis of terrain park safety issues. For further information about this project, please contact UCRISE.

Project Funding

New South Wales Sporting Injuries Committee and UCRISE.

Project Staff

Chief Investigator

  • Associate Professor Tracey J. Dickson


  • Associate Professor Stephen Trathen
  • Professor Gordon Waddington
  • Professor Roland Goecke

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