July 28, 2011
A recent popularity surge in the sport of wakeboarding is sending many teens and young people to the emergency room with head injuries, according to a report by WRAL News. As WakeMed pediatrician Dr. Mark Piehl stated, “Recent research shows that the risk of a head injury in wakeboarding is about 5-10 times that compared to waterskiing.”
The sheer size of a wakeboard, which is wider and bulkier than a set of skis, can be one of the causes of higher injury rates. Factor in boards’ sharp edges and the fact that riders’ feet are strapped onto wakeboards much tighter than they would be on skis, and it’s easy to see why they have greater accident risks.
In one recent instance, a 16-year-old Apex, North Carolina boy fractured his skull during a wakeboarding trip. He suffered permanent memory loss, of both the event and the day leading up to it, and a huge gash across his head as a result of the accident. He says he will now wear a helmet when participating in the sport.
The Center for Injury Research and Policy offers several safety tips to follow while wakeboarding, such as always wearing proper safety equipment, including helmets and life-preservers.
The Raleigh Brain Injury Attorneys with HensonFuerst would like to remind and encourage those active in high-impact water sports to always wear a helmet while participating in these activities, as it may save your life.