is a relatively new sport starting in the late 1960s. Snowboarders
fall into three general categories of riders:
- Freeriding - Most
beginners will start off in the freeriding category
spending most of their time on groomed ski trails.
- Freestyling -
A freestyler is the trickster, always looking for a
cool jump sight.
- Big Mountain or Back
Country - These are the off-trail and powder snowboarders.
First Day Out
Rent equipment and take
a lesson. Most mountains offer package deals with rentals,
instruction and a lift ticket. Lessons will give you the
basic techniques you need. If you take a group lesson,
you will have others to console you and laugh with while
you are learning. Learning should be fun. As in skiing,
keep your weight low and forward. It will seem impossible
to begin with. But once you get it, it's more natural
and fluid than skiing. Be determined and stick with it!
Plan on boarding for a couple of days, so you can solidify
what you learned.
Footing, Bindings, and
The first thing you'll need to determine is whether you're
"goofy footed" or "regular footed".
(these are the same terms used for surfing.) Which foot
do you want forward on the board? You need to determine
your "footing" by answering a simple little
question. Which foot do you put forward first to stop
yourself from falling? If it's your left foot, you're
"regular". If it's you're right foot, you're "goofy"...
The next equipment issue
is whether you'll use a soft or step-in/plate binding.
Soft bindings use soft boots and plate bindings use hard
boots that are similar to ski boots. Because the soft
boots are more comfortable they are generally recommended
and the most common for rental equipment. To plate or
soft bind, this is the question! Plate bindings appear
to be more like ski bindings; therefore they may seem
easier. Some people swear by them. On the other hand some
won't leave the comfort of soft bindings and soft boots.
Both are worth a test ride.
write and let SheGear know what your preference is and
why. Send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The first day you will be
on your behind and knees a lot! It's really important
that your pants are waterproof and rugged. Proper snowboarding
pants are a must, please don't be frugal here. Wrist guards
are a very good idea. Wrist guards for roller-blading
will work just fine. If the snow is hard packed you may
also want to think about kneepads.
Hitting the Slopes
Once you've learned the
basic skills, you will be able to move it to the slopes
and continue your progress. Finding the right equipment
to match your style of boarding will be part of this progress.
Choosing a Snowboard
It's time to choose and invest in a board. Finding the
right snowboard requires taking them for a spin or test
drive. Weight is a key factor in the board you choose.
Boards should be marked with recommended weight ranges.
Basically, most women's boards are designed for smaller
frames. However, some manufacturers have put more thought
into designing. For more information, check out our page.
Ready to Fly
You make it look fluid,
graceful and oh so fun! Some of the best women snowboarders
talk about the camaraderie they have found in this sport.
It is still seen as a male-dominated sport. Too tough
for girls! You can help to change this...
- Keep the lower edge or
downhill edge of the board up off the snow. If you catch
your lower edge on the slope, it will flip you. Hard!
- Don't give up! Determination
is always the name of the game in learning a new sport!
Once you've decided to learn, commit to mastering it.
Everybody was a beginner once, and not that long ago.
- Tie everything down.
You'll fall often and when you do glasses, goggles,
watches, hats, etc. will fly off.
- Get accustomed to the
feel of the board first on a flat area. Push and slide
the board around on the flat area with your back foot
out of the binding and then try pivoting the board with
both feet secured in the binding. Once you get a basic
feeling, you'll be better prepared for a slight slope.
- More and more boarders
are wearing helmets. Head injuries are always serious,
so don't take the chance.
- As in any winter sport,
be aware of hypothermia. Hypothermia is when the body's
temperature falls below normal. Mild hypothermia occurs
when your body temperature drops only one degree. Stay
warm. The proper apparel and gear are so important!
Give yourself the best you can.