(HealthDay News) -- Skiers and others who don't mind braving the cold for that "winter rush" can benefit from a few safety precautions, the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons says.

The academy offers these suggestions for how to stay safe:

  • Protect yourself with the right gear, including layers of warm, water-resistant and wind-resistant clothing; goggles; gloves; helmets and any other necessary protective equipment.
  • Before you start to play, warm up for about 10 minutes, remembering not to overdo it.
  • Drink plenty of fluids.
  • Check all of your athletic equipment, and follow all rules of the game you are playing. Take lessons, if necessary.
  • Take immediate shelter if you have any symptoms of frostbite or hypothermia, including numb patches of white skin, waxy dark skin or swollen, burning and itchy skin.