Safety at all levels

No-one controls the mountains apart from the mountains themselves. Therefore, to enjoy everything the mountains have to offer you have to  appreciate there are safety steps to follow. 

From the equipment to basic methods, it's important to protect yourself and others, regardless of your age. For esf, this is an essential element. esf goes as far as we can in respect to teaching, rescue and search techniques in the event of an avalanche.

The 10 safety rules for on the slopes

To be safe when skiing on the slopes, follow the 10 FIS (International Ski Federation) rules of good behaviour and everything will be fine during your stay.
1. Behave in a sensible way, as to not endanger others. 

2. Adapt your speed and behaviour to your own abilities, the slope you are skiing and the weather conditions. 

3. Choose a slope that suits your ability and level.

4. Use wide turns and control your speed when overtaking slower skiers on the slopes. 

5. Make sure you can ski a slope or training slope without danger.
6. In the event of a fall, if possible move to the side of the slope.

7. Use the edge of the slopes to go up or down on foot;

8. All skiers must obey the signs; make sure you are aware when skiing

9. Everyone should help and assist in the event of an accident

10. If you are involved in an accident or just a witness, make your identity known.

Some tips for your stay


Your efforts, the cold, the altitude, the sun... Skiing or snowboarding is a sport and you should prepare your body accordingly.

Remember to warm up,  don't over do it, eat and hydrate yourself properly, have the correct clothes and equipment and you will be fine.


To ski / snowboard well, you must choose the correct equipment for your technical level, your height and your weight.

The adjustment and maintenance of the bindings is essential to limit the risks in the event of a fall or impact.

Ask in the specialist stores for advice and those who comply with the NF X50-007 rental standards guarantee the right equipment and correct adjustment of the bindings.
If you feel something is not right - speak up and the technician can assist you in making a safe change.


The head is very exposed in winter sports, especially in children.
To limit any trauma, wear a helmet. Its effectiveness has been proven.
Ask for a helmet that complies with standard NF EN 1077.

To protect your eyes from the suns ultraviolet rays, wear protective glasses (index 4).


Before you start, check that you are well covered and insured.
If not, take action.
Help on the slopes is not free ...

Observe the safety rules. Make a note of the ski resort's piste rescue service number.

Rescue Reflectors RECCO®

Developed to provide avalanche rescue, the RECCO® Rescue System is used by more than 700 rescue organisations around the world.

For several years, the National Syndicate of French Ski Instructors has partnered with RECCO® to equip the official outfit of instructors with safety reflectors and has made available a document entitled the plan, a real avalanche safety memento in a small format so that every skier or snowboarder can have it handy.
This system aims to find the victims buried under an avalanche thanks to a technology which makes the search faster with a significant saving of time, because time is the buried person's worst enemy. The RECCO® reflector is permanently integrated into the outfits of esf instructors and does not require batteries or start-up and operates continuously.

RECCO® reflectors do not prevent the onset of an avalanche, nor guarantee the location or survival of a lost or buried person, but allows rescuers to locate a person more quickly and accurately using the RECCO detector ®.
RECCO® reflector equipment does not replace the companion use of the avalanche transceiver for research. Complementary in function, RECCO® technology increases the chances of being found in time.

Important to know
  • This essential document can be viewed via the following link: the plan  
  • Discover RECCO technology via the official video: click here
  • Another video can explain the integration of the product in the outfits or on the material : click here 
  • If you want to expand your knowledge of avalanches, check out this video : click here
official site of recco®

Other safety platforms

The SKIZZZ videos 

Skizzz, the extraterrestrial, and Swag, the hip teenager, explain with humour and lightheartedness the good behaviour to adopt to taking a chairlift safely.

Skizzz and Swag, show in short animated films the essential etiquette and attitudes to use a chairlift, or how to behave during transport. These two cartoon heroes are the actors of the communication campaign set up in January 2014 in all French ski areas by DSF.

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Our mountains offer a wonderful multi-faceted playground. They create an incomparable feeling of freedom. This practice off the slopes, in freeride or ski touring, is now accessible to all and allows us to make the best use of the incredible potential of our equipment and the mountains.

But in this search for speed and challenges, it must be done without neglecting safety. Produced and collaboration with the ENSA, this site aims to cover all the practice of off-piste without dramatising it.

This document is based on the 3 essentials of off-piste skiing:
  • Knowledge of the environment
  • Safety and Security
  • the technique

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