Table of Contents
Everything starts with the right snowboarding gear
In order to reduce the chance of falling or injury, you need to get the rightsnowboard goggles, snowboard boots, snow pants, and other equipment. You also need to dress properly so that you’re not too cold or too hot.
A snowboarding beginner might put on excessive clothes thinking they will keep him warm. Wearing 3 pairs of socks might seem like a great solution for icy conditions, but it will only lead to an adverse effect where a person will start sweating and losing body heat.
So, while you do need to protect yourself from wind and snow, make sure not to overdo it. Furthermore, you should only wear natural materials as they have better water absorption.
Regardless, finding the right snowboard is the most important thing for beginner snowboard enthusiasts. Each one of them will have a different feeling, and will ride differently. The choice of a snowboard will also depend on your skill level.
A beginner board should have a rocker camber. With it, you will be able to put a rocker between your feet, and camber below each foot. That way, it will be easier to catch the board.
In other words, it will be much easier to turn as you won’t be able to catch the edges with rocker camber. This part of the board setup will allow the edge to dig in while making turns. Not only will it provide additional stability, but it will help you develop beginner snowboarding skills.
All-mountain snowboards are also a great choice, even for intermediate snowboarders. They will allow you to ride the whole mountain, including advanced trails. On the other hand, if you wish to visit a terrain park, we recommend that you go with a freestyle board.
Lastly, there are also freeride boards that allow you to go to the top of the mountain, but they might not be ideal for beginner-friendly trails. All of these board types might have a rocker camber.
Test the Gear Beforehand
You can learn a lot about the gear while in the snowboard shop. Keep in mind that the majority of snowboarders are beginners, and store staff usually focus on helping this target group. Advanced snowboarders usually don’t need such assistance.
Even though the staff will help you out, you will have to try the gear before hitting the real snow slope. Besides a snowboard, make sure to check how wrist guards, knee pads, and other pieces that suit you.
Simply put, not having the right equipment can get you in a lot of trouble. So much so that it’s not even worth trying your luck unless you’re 100% sure that the equipment is right for you. It is much better spending your first snowboarding winter on a beginners slope than trying an advanced slope with bad snowboarding gear.
If the gear is not suitable for your body you won’t be able to maneuver properly. The emphasis will always be on the snowboard boots and board. Even if you avoid aninjury, bad gear will make the whole experience very uncomfortable.
In order to assess the boots there are a few things you can do. Make sure that your toes feel the boot. They shouldn’t be pressed tightly inside though. A common problem occurs when you lift your feet and boots start hovering because there is too much space within the boot.
As mentioned, you should also consider what you’re putting on your upper body. Having the right wind jacket is crucial, but that doesn’t mean you should put several layers underneath it.
Make sure to take lessons
Taking a 3-hour private snowboarding lesson will introduce you to the basics, but it will also reduce the chance of an injury. Young people in particular tend to be hasty when they start snowboarding for the first time. They might get a few pointers then believe this will be enough to get them through beginner slopes.
Not only does this increase the risk of injuries, but it makes transitioning to advanced trails that much harder. The worst yet is that you will develop bad habits which might prevent you from ever getting good at this sport.
A professional snowboard instructor will help prevent all of this. An expert will teach you about the proper body position, maneuvering, and how to adjust if anything goes wrong. If you get the basics right you will feel much safer on the board, and you will develop advanced skills at a much faster rate.
Always Look Ahead of You and Decide Where You Wish to Go
Here is one of the most common mistakes that newbies make. When going down a slope, your snowboard and body will follow your eyes. Looking ahead is the best way to stay on track. Alternatively, if you start looking at your feet, there is a much higher chance that you’ll stumble and fall.
Make sure that your eyes follow the right track. Focusing on the objects on the sides will only make you swirl. You shouldn’t feel too anxious when planning a trajectory. Inexperienced riders tend to get overwhelmed quickly, and they might start thinking about trees and other snowboarders. This is a recipe for disaster.
Make Sure to Bend Your Knees
A snowboarder has to be springy on the slope. Your legs allow you to absorb the impact of a drop, as well as to make the right movements. By bending your knees, you will also gain much more control of the board. Stiff knees will affect the maneuverability, and you are also most likely to tweak something during a bigger drop.
Bear in mind that the knees don’t have to be under a full 90-degree angle. However, you should keep them bent throughout the run. That way you will be able to adjust to obstacles, but also modify your board during quick decisions.
This is probably the most important thing you need to remember as a new snowboarder. If you manage to nail this skill, you will be able to focus on other aspects of snowboarding that you’re trying to learn.
Having a loose stance is especially important if you are in a pickle. Even if you hit something you are less likely to suffer a serious injury if your knees were previously bent. Among others, having a proper stance will reduce the pressure on the joints and will allow better transfer of energy throughout your legs and body.
Riding Across the Slope
A lot of newbie snowboarders are worried that they’ll lose control over the snowboard as they get off the ski lift and go down the mountain. In order to avoid this potential problem, you shouldn’t be boarding down the mountain. Instead, make sure to ride across the slope.
In other words, you will have to move from the left side to the right side of the ride. Then, you move back to the left and again, back to the right. This is the most natural movement down the mountain, and we’re sure you’ve seen this a lot of times in snowboarding videos. You will be able to retain control over your board as long as you’re able to nail this move.
As your rides from one side to another increase and become wider, you will be able to reduce the speed more and more. However, going too wide can cause issues as you are more likely to hit other snowboarders. So, make sure to watch the surroundings. Look up the slope every now and then to ensure there’s no one behind you.
Start With Bunny Slopes
This is something we cannot emphasize enough. A lot of snowboarders tend to get cocky after a few successful lessons with an instructor. They might try to conquer the biggest slope on the mountain without any proper preparation. But, this is a major mistake!
Everyone needs to go on a bunny slope. And, even if you feel good after your first run on the bunny slope, you should repeat it a few times. That way, you will become more and more secure on the board, and get accustomed to the surroundings. While this might seem like a small thing, it will be a crucial skill on advanced slopes.
This primarily has to do with the speed of other snowboarders. While bunny slopes might seem too slow, they are a good test for faster areas.
A lot of intermediate snowboarders will zoom by you on advanced slopes. In fact, you will quickly realize that your skill level is very inadequate. Newbie snowboarders tend to crash into obstacles or other snowboarders pretty quickly as they are not accustomed to this new speed. Among others, they will feel rushed on advanced slopes, and will feel obliged to increase their speed even if they’re not ready for this change.
Going down a bunny slope will not necessarily help you increase your snowboarding speed, but it will help you learn how to check the surroundings. And then, you can utilize this skill on faster slopes to avoid collisions.
Learn More About a Slope
Every slope has its specifics. Even if we’re talking about bunny slopes, there might be a few parts that are extra tricky. Or, there might be some chokepoints where you are more likely to bump into other snowboarders.
The best way to circumvent potential issues regarding a slope is to check it beforehand. Go to the base and check the layout. If you wish, you can also ask an instructor or some nearby advanced snowboarder for a few tips.
You should also pay attention to the number of snowboarders. If there are a lot of people on the slope that day, it will be more important to check the surroundings and vice versa.
There is No Need to Rush
Most people have limited time on the mountain. Some of them might feel that this is one of the rare chances they have to try snowboarding. Because of that they tend to feel rushed and try to skip steps.
Newbies also tend to rush if they’re in a snowboarding group with their friends. In an attempt to stay with the group, they will skip instructions or go on slopes that are not suitable for their skill level.
No matter the reason, you should be very careful during your journey. There is no need to rush things. In the end, you’re there to have fun whether you do, whether you;re on the bunny slopes or advanced parts of the mountain.
Take Breaks if You Get Tired
People don’t realize how hard snowboarding is. It activates a lot of your muscles, especially the lower half. If you’re out of shape, this will quickly catch up to you.
There is no need to drain all your energy in one day. You will just get fatigued, and you won’t be able to go on the mountain tomorrow. It is much better to take breaks when needed and avoid pushing yourself too hard.
Last Snowboarding Tips for Beginners
No matter what, it is very important to have fun. People tend to skip steps while on the mountain. This is especially true for competitive individuals and adrenaline junkies. In an attempt to quickly get better, they might injure themselves and others.
So, take your time and make sure to enjoy the whole experience!