Safety is a prominent issue when we talk about skiing or snowboarding. Almost nobody is skiing without a helmet (our ski/snowboard helmet guide is here), but helmets are not the only protective gear you should use. The head is one primary point of protection, your back is the other primary point. Therefore, you should use back protectors too, or if you like speed very much then consider the ski airbag vest.
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Back protectors for snowboard and skiing
Back protectors are usually used by snowboarders, but it is worth considering for skiers too. They cover the critical part of your back with flex pads that absorb the impact in the case of a fall.
The back protectors are very light and flexible and do not obstruct your movements during your skiing/snowboarding session.
However, in case of a fall, the pad is strong enough to protect the spine. The protectors feature kevlar or other composite material that forms the barrier around your back.
Check prices of different back protectors here.
In&motion Airbag Vests
It is approved by FIS (International Ski Federation) to use airbag vests in speed skiing disciplines. It is no surprise as racers often cross the speed of 100 km per hour and the consequences of any fall can be fatal.
The ski airbag vests were developed by In&motion company in cooperation with Rossignol, the French manufacturer of ski equipment. Today, the airbag vest is used by more than a hundred ski professionals during the FIS World Cup.
The good news, the airbag vest is available also to non-professionals. It is not a cheap thing but if you like speed, it is well worth it.
How do ski airbag vests work?
The airbag vest is worn under the ski suit (on the Thermo underwear). The vest includes a certified back protector and a small processor that analyzes the skier movement in real-time.
The algorithm is able to detect the fall and inflate the vest (aka airbag) in a short time (1/10 of a second). The airbag will protect four crucial areas (spine, thorax, abdomen, hips) before the body touches the land.
What materials are used in airbag vests?
Ski airbag vests are made of mesh and stretch fabrics, back protectors use SAS-TEC insert technology and the vest weighs approximately 1 740 grams. Though, it fits very well under any ski suit.
Which areas does the ski airbag vest protect?
Spine, Thorax, Abdomen, Hips
Check the official presentation video of the In&motion made in cooperation with Tessa Worley.
What is the pricing of a ski airbag vest?
The recommended price of the In&motion Rossignol airbag vest is 1000 € (1 200 $).
Check the availability and actual price of the ski airbag vest here.