A Conversation for Snowboarding Basics

Tips for beginners

Post 1


It's not like surfing, instead of having your weight on the back foot, and spinning from the front, your weight is on the front foot and spinning from the back. Took me a little while to figure that out.

Your butt is really going to hurt on the first day. I'm sorry, that's the way it is.

So are your arms and shoulders from continually pushing yourself up.

Keep your arms out and your centre of gravity low.

It's all about moving from one edge of your board, then decreasing your edge till you're standing up straight, then moving to the other edge. Well done, you just did two turns!

Start off practicing turns into/towards the mountain. Falling on your face is better.

Save jumping and hits for your second day.

Stay away from cute little kids with fathers with hair on the backs of their knuckles. Try as you might, you just won't have the control you need to avoid getting decked by irate parents. Rocks, trees and chairlift poles also feature, avoid them too.

T-bar's are not designed for snowboarders. Undo your back foot, and step on the middle of the board. Don't try anything apart from struggling to maintain your balance. If there's a chair lift and a T bar, and both have long queues, take the chairlift, because falling off a T bar and having to queue again isn't going to help your temprament.

If the snow is very icy, you probably want to be skiing instead. Snowboarders thrive on anything apart from ice.

The faster you're going, the more it's going to hurt. Try not to land on your head when that happens.

More Tips for beginners

Post 2


The # 1 rule is get your weight on the front foot, it
does not as most beginners believe cause you to
accelerate down the slope, quite the opposite in fact.
It prevents the back end of the board from flying away
from under you. Just relax, lean into the slope (but keep
your head up so you can see where your going !) and
get that heel toe motion going !

(Unless you are in deep powder, where putting your weight
firmly on your back foot is the only way you'll stop from
sinking in at the front.)

Heel to toe motion should not be simultaneous on both feet !
Your instructor will initially tell you that it is just to get you used
to the overall idea. However after some time you will realise that
a more fluid wave-like change with front foot leading will give you
those better carves. It's difficult to explain here so ask your instructor !
Someone once described it to me as being similar to a cars clutch -
accelerator foot-motion when you're driving . It isn't but it somehow I
knew what they meant, funny.....


More Tips for beginners

Post 3


A basic tip for beginners: Contrary to the situation with skis, STAY AWAY FROM FRESHLY GROOMED SLOPES (icy and packed surfaces count here too). On skis these are great, providing a nice even surface to get the hang of things. On a snowboard, you will soon realize that because you can't dig in the edge of the board, you can't turn, and because you can't turn, you can't slow down or avoid trees or lifts....

Try and find an older slope, or even better, thin-to-medium powder, so you can get the hang of turning much easier. While it isn't impossible to turn on a freshly groomed slope, it is somewhat more difficult.

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