AN orthopaedic surgeon who practices in Basingstoke is warning winter sports fanatics to take steps to avoid injury when they travel to the ski slopes this winter.

With Russia preparing to host the 2014 winter games and Channel 4 show ‘The Jump’ proving popular, healthcare professionals are predicting people across Basingstoke will be inspired to take up a winter sport.

Alongside beginners, they are also concerned about those who are returning to the slopes after time away.

Consultant orthopaedic surgeon Mr Jonathan Hobby of BMI The Hampshire Clinic said: “During the winter there is certainly a rise in the number of patients presenting with sports related injuries here at the clinic.

“The vast majority of winter sports injuries are the result of bodies making contact with hard winter surfaces, like ice or hard-packed snow.

“Most commonly the types we see are shoulder dislocation or fractures, injuries to the knee, ankle or elbow, but we also see hand and finger injuries.”

“If people have been inactive or they haven’t prepared their muscles or stepped up fitness levels they could well be in trouble.

“Not all amateur sports enthusiasts do the right medical checks before they start.

“All too often people don’t consider the serious consequences that can occur with poor preparation. That also includes using the right protective equipment.”

According to a new survey by BMI Healthcare, seven out of ten orthopaedic surgeons and physiotherapists say they see an increase in sports injuries during the winter months.

Of those who took part in the survey, 87 per cent said they believed those who take part in winter sports of some kind, do not prepare their bodies enough and therefore run the risk of developing an injury.

BMI Healthcare has launched BMI Active For Life, a campaign to encourage people to look after their bones and joints, enabling them to stay active throughout their lives.

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