Equipment, whether hired, borrowed or owned by the school or students, must be in a safe condition and suitable for the activity.
Boots and bindings
Boots and bindings must fit comfortably, be firm fitting and firmly laced, and be matched to the cross-country skiing being undertaken and the skis being used.
All students must wear sunglasses or goggles to protect their eyes from glare off the snow, which even on cloudy days can lead to snow blindness. Sunglasses complying with Australian Standard (AS/NZS 1067) for sunglasses will provide the best UV protection. They prevent at least 95% of UV radiation from reaching the eyes.
Gloves or mitts to prevent sunburn, frostnip and abrasions while skiing must be worn.
Helmets are not generally used in cross-country skiing. They should be worn by students and staff if high speeds or collision with solid objects or people are likely.
To determine whether helmets should be worn, consider:
- the skills and experience of participants in relation to the terrain participants are likely to encounter
- artificial hazards in the activity environment (e.g. poles, barriers)
- natural hazards in the activity environment (e.g. icy snow conditions, trees, water courses)
- other users of the slope.
Where helmets are used they must be designed and approved to BS EN 1077 (‘Specification for helmets for alpine skiers’) standards. For more information on helmets for skiing see the
SNELL Memorial Foundation.
Skis and poles
Cross-country skis and poles must be matched to the cross-country skiing being undertaken and also to the skills and experience of the student group, for example an overnight tour versus a day trip on groomed trails.
First aid kits
First aid kits appropriate to the location and level of training must be carried.
Clothing is the individual’s primary protection against extreme and variable weather conditions. Clothing lists need to be appropriate for the activity, the environment and the season.
To protect against sunburn use broad-spectrum, water-resistant SPF 30+ sunscreen on all exposed parts of the body, applied according to the manufacturer’s recommendations.
For cold conditions encountered in snow activities, students and staff should have a change of clothing available. Clothing for snow activities should allow participants to remain warm even when wet and should be worn in layers with inner, insulating layers and outer windproof and waterproof layers.
Staff and students must be easily identifiable. Staff must determine the most suitable system/s of identification, based on the assessment of the environment, students’ skills, the type of activities to be undertaken and the age and number of students.
All touring parties must carry with them appropriate safety and rescue equipment including:
- four season tents which provide shelter for all members of the group
- stoves and fuel for which students have had safety instruction in using
- emergency food that does not require lengthy preparation, for each participant
- sleeping bags packed to ensure they remain dry
- insulating sleeping mats
- comprehensive ski, boot and pole repair kit.