Before you send your child on their way down their favorite sledding hill, be sure the area is safe. The hill should be free of rocks, trees, fences, and bystanders, and there should be ample room at the bottom for stopping. Helmets and adult supervision is always a must. The best sleds can be steered by their riders and have brakes to slow them down. Avoid sleds that can't be steered, such as tubes, saucers, or toboggans, and never use a sled substitute like a cookie sheet, trash can lid, or cardboard box.
Beginners should take lessons from a certified instructor. Snowboarding is not recommended for children under seven years old. To prevent head injury children should wear a helmet that meets current safety standards. Children should follow the buddy system. Never ski or snowboard alone. Always check your child's equipment to make sure it is in good condition and fits properly. Children should use short boards, no more than chest high. Do warm-up exercises and stretches before each day's skiing or snowboarding. Stay on marked trails and follow the rules of the slopes and ski lifts. All skiers and snowboarders should be aware of potential hazards on the hill, including uphill skiers that may be coming towards them. Skiers and boarders should quit before getting tired and before it gets dark. Fatigue, rocks, trees, ice patches, changes in weather, and poor visibility are factors that can lead to injuries. Choose runs or trails that best suit ability. Before starting out, children should understand the signs that show the level of difficulty. If they find themselves in an area beyond their ability, it is best to remove the skis or snowboard and to walk along the edge of the hill or trail, to an area that they can handle comfortably.
Check the weather forecast before going out for a day's activity.
Dress appropriately for the temperature and the activity you will be doing.
Use well-maintained, well-fitting equipment, including the appropriate safety helmet for your activity.
Keep activities suited to children’s age and abilities, and stay alert for hazards.