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Bobsleigh Equipment and History






Brakes are applied by lifting a lever that lowers metal teeth into the ice.

Push handles

The side push handles must be retractable. The rear push handles are not retractable. All push handles are used to push the bob at the start.


A hightech plastic composite helmet must be worn to prevent head injuries. Many have visors to protect the eyes, or the athlete may choose to wear goggles.

Start shoes

Made of synthetic material, have spikes on the soles for traction during the start push.


The sled consists of a main hull, a frame, a front and rear axle, and two sets of independent steel runners. The hull, also known as a cowling, is generally constructed of fibreglass and is open to allow team members to board and sit down.

Two-man sled specifications

Two-man sled: Minimum weight (excluding crew): 170kg Maximum weight (including crew and equipment): 390kg(Women’s sled: 340 kg.) Maximum length: 2.70 metres Maximum width: 0.67 metres

Four-man sled specifications

Minimum weight (excluding crew): 210kg Maximum weight (including crew and equipment): 630kg Maximum length: 3.80 metres Maximum width: 0.67 metres

Steering control

The driver controls the sled with his hands and fingers, using rings that are attached by ropes to a steering mechanism.