If you are a pedestrian in Norway you have to prepare yourself for icy sidewalks and streets. (Illustrating photo: bt.no)
Language and culture are not the only challenges international students in Norway must handle. At the University of Tromsø, students are offered a somewhat original, but important course: How to safely move on icy roads.
Last Thursday, 18 foreign students gathered in the TSI Judo gymnasium at the University of Tromsø where they learned proper falling techniques to avoid the worst damages.
The chief instructor is Svenja Rahn. She is originally from Germany but have lived in Norway for fourteen years. The purpose of the course is to teach students that it is not dangerous to fall on the ice – if you fall in the right way.
– I know there are many foreign students who are extremely afraid to break bones, while others are afraid of accidentally slipping under a bus or out in the streets, says Rahn to NRK.
After many years of experience with both judo and icy roads, she is convinced that it is possible to learn how to fall safely.
– It is absolutely possible. In Judo, we practice falling techniques every day. Therefore, we are quite used to it.
Rahn believes many will benefit from the course.
– Roll Like a Banana!
According to the chief instructor it is important to exhale when you fall, and it is safer if one manages to land on the side instead of the back. If you keep your arms close to the body you can avoid breaking bones.
Motivated international students are participating in the course at the University of Tromsø. (Photo: NRK)
She describes a “perfect slip”:
– Imagine that you are a banana.and that you can roll like one.
Caroline from Belgium think the course is very educational.
– It is very fun. I have learned how to fall safely and think I am quite ready for a winter in Tromsø, she says.
Students from Belgium, and Russia, among others, have signed up – but so far no Norwegians.
Text by: Anette Broteng Christiansen, ThorNews