Some 3,600 ice-skaters require medical attention every year in Switzerland, with almost nine out of ten injured people being men.
The Swiss Council for Accident Preventionexternal link said most accidents involve people falling over, causing bruising, cuts and lacerations, broken bones or concussion. Elbows, wrists, heads and knees are the body parts at most risk.
Every fifth injury is to the head, the council said on Thursday, adding that a helmet – be it a ski helmet, bicycle helmet or special ice-skating helmet – would halve this figure. As a result, 350 people a year could be spared injuries and their consequences.
The council’s latest safety campaign therefore recommends the wearing of helmets, firm gloves and protective measures such as knee and wrist supports. It also told skaters to let go of their partner immediately if they fall.
In this video, part of the campaign, skaters are urged to ignore casts "which can be really annoying" and wear a helmet: