The Correct Way to Fall on Ice

We are getting a healthy dose of snow and ice today. So in case you bite it, here are three tips on how to fall correctly according to the new Harvard Medical School Guide.  And these apply for any type of fall, not just falling on ice . . .

  1. Putting your arms out in front of you to brace yourself is the wrong way to fall.  That’s how you break a wrist.  So even though it’s tempting, try not to do it.  Tensing your body up to brace yourself isn’t good either and actually increases your chance of injury.
  2. The RIGHT way to fall is to, quote, “think of yourself like a sack of potatoes.”  Try to shift your weight onto your legs . . . tuck your arms up to protect your face and head . . . and then crumple to the ground.Landing on the side of your butt, or the side of your leg is ideal.  You might have a nasty bruise, but you’re less likely to break something that way.
  1. Make sure you get up the right way, so you don’t fall again.  This one’s especially important on ice.  Basically, just don’t try to be nonchalant about it and get up too fast.

Take it slow and get yourself onto all fours, with a slightly wide stance.  Then round your spine and stand up slowly, with your weight centered underneath you, and your arms hanging straight down toward the ground.