The Sled

Each sled consists of a main hull, a frame, a front and rear axle and two sets of runners. The hull, also known as a cowling, is generally constructed of fiberglass and made of two separate sections. The hull is mounted on four runners. The rear part of the bobsled must be open.


Two-man sled:

Minimum weight (excluding crew): 170 kilograms (about 375 pounds)

Maximum weight (including crew): 390 kilograms (about 860 pounds)

Four-man sled:

Minimum weight (excluding crew): 210 kilograms (about 463 pounds)

Maximum weight (including crew and equipment): 630 kilograms (about 1389 pounds)

Two-woman sled:

Minimum weight (excluding crew): 165 kilograms (about 364 pounds)

Maximum weight (including crew and equipment): 325 kilograms (about 716 pounds)

Women's monobob sled:

Minimum weight (excluding crew): 162 kilograms (about 357 pounds)

Maximum weight (including crew and equipment): 247 kilograms (about 545 pounds)

If the total weight of the sled, including crew, is less than the maximum weight, ballast may be added, though the athletes themselves may not carry any additional weight.



The runners must be made of a solid piece of steel and no plating or coating is allowed. It is not permitted to warm up the runners, or use any substance that improves sliding. At the start of the race, the temperature of the runners must be within four degrees Celsius of the reference runner, which is exposed to the open air for one hour before the start of the competition. If a tested runner is too warm, the sled is disqualified. Warm runners are not allowed because the heat would decrease the friction between the runners and ice, making the sled faster.


Prior to the race if teams wish to wipe their runners to remove impurities, they must use an official cleaning solution that all teams share.

Steering mechanism

The driver steers the bobsled by pulling on two pieces of rope. These ropes are attached to a steering bolt that turns the front frame of the bobsled. Pulling on the rope in the right hand will steer the sled to the right; pulling on the rope in the left hand will steer the sled to the left.



All competitors must wear helmets.


The use of spikes on shoes is allowed, provided that the spikes are arranged like a brush. The diameter of the spike may not be thicker than 1.5 mm. Spikes may not be longer than 5 mm and the minimum number of spikes per shoe must be at least 250.