How to Steer a Toboggan

Pulling a toboggan over groomed trails behind a snowmobile or dog team requires little steering effort. Safely coasting a toboggan full of excited kids and adults down a nearby hill lends itself to a little more knowledge about steering one of these handcrafted delights.

Inspect the toboggan before using. Repair any broken slats, boards or screws so no injuries occur when in use. See the eHow "How to Repair a Toboggan" for more information.

Polish the bottom of the toboggan with wax for easy maneuvering down the hill.

Clear the path of any obstacles before riding in the toboggan.

Choose a toboggan run away from trees, creeks, boulders and other tobogganers. A well-designed course guarantees a clean ride down the hill.

Sit or kneel facing forward on the toboggan. Avoid lying down or going head first to avoid injury.

Designate a driver to do the steering and to bark steering orders to the rest of the toboggan team. This eliminates confusion and assures a safe coast down hill.

Use a foot, hand, stick or brake on the toboggan like a rudder on one side to steer the toboggan.

Have the toboggan riders use their feet to slow down the toboggan if going too fast. Maintain control over the toboggan at all times.

Shifting weight may move the toboggan slightly but don't count on it. A toboggan will generally go in the direction it is pointed.


  • Load a toboggan so it is not top heavy and tips over easily.


  • Set up the toboggan down an ice slide or chute to reduce the need for steering. The toboggan will ride along the pre-formed path easily.
  • Avoid head injury by wearing a helmet when tobogganing. See the eHow "How to Sled Safely."
  • Place children safely between adults on the toboggan. Let the adults do the steering so the kids do not get hurt.
  • Install slider strips on the toboggan edges to protect the sled from trees and rocks when hit.

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