The snow season is fast approaching. Many individuals are already thinking about pulling out their old snowboards or replacing them with new ones. Before you get too excited, lets review some of the basics for the average snowboard enthusiast.
Always make sure that you have layers of protection from the cold. The inner layer should consist of thermal underwear. Outer garments should be water or moisture resistant. Cover as much skin as possible. Use fleece protection for the middle layer. It isn’t necessary to have more than one pair of socks. You don’t want your feet to get wet by sweating.
There are three factors to consider in a snowboard: length, width and shape. Smaller boards are for better maneuverability. Your board should be just wide enough for your feet and boots to fit without overhanging the sides of the boards. The shape of the board determines the skills you can execute. Freestyle boards are shorter and wider. However, they are great for beginners. This is because they are easier to handle.
Always stretch your muscles before doing any snowboard runs. Many riders never get started because of early injuries.
How to carry your board
Carrying your board is very important. Always attach the leash to your wrist of gloves. Carry the board in the center with your strong arm. If you have a great distance to carry your board, carry it horizontally across your shoulders. You will find this less tiring. A snowboard can get heavy when walking in deep snow.
Find a flat soft snow area to strap in your lead foot first. Attach the leash to your board and front foot first. Your back foot will be half in and half out as you mount your board. You can also enter on your back knee, too. Don’t be too concerned about strapping in the back foot, until you become good and sledding.
Everyone falls. As you start to fall, lower your weight (center of gravity). Keep in mind, protective gear and helmets can only do so much. You have to learn how to fall. a good rule of thumb to follow is not to land on knees, head and wrists. Landing on your rear is always a good idea.
Stand up and work on balance before trying anything. Always start on small and short hills with lots of snow. Start with your body uphill from the front of the board. This way you are looking ahead towards the end of the hill or your route. Push off gently with your back foot. If both feet are strapped in, grab the front of the board with one hand and push off with the other hand. Rise up slowly.
Execution on turns will come with many practice runs. Eventually, you will learn how to execute these skills.
Do not expect to be successful your first time out. You will get better with practice runs. The main idea is to have fun and work on improvement gradually. Like any new skill learned, repetition is your best bet.