Snowboard Buying Guide
Choosing Snowboards can be as easy, or as difficult as you like.
The key things to remember are your snowboarding ability (be totally honest with yourself here), what type of riding you want to do and how much money you want to spend.
We try and offer a Snowboard setup to to suit all abilities, riding styles and budgets. We can offer you an individual personal advisor to help you make the right choice before making your investment and parting with your hard earned cash. So then, onto the points mentioned above:-
Ability – From complete newbie wanting to buy their first board to more advanced riders with a few seasons under their belt, we will categorise these boards as “beginner”, “Intermediate” and “Advanced”. We know this method has been used before in the past but below we’ll give you our definition or each ability level. The good news is that there is plenty of crossover between boards and ability levels so even if you are a beginner, an intermediate board may well suit you just as well which means you can progress over time without the need to buy another board so soon.
If you are a beginner looking for a first board, look for the more loose, softer flexing boards as these won’t punish silly mistakes while your are honing your skills but equally will give you the opportunity to try out your first boxes, rails , nose and tail presses if you’re feeling really adventurous.
If you are Intermediates, wishing to progress, go for a medium flexing board and then decide whether you want to move to more towards “Jib/Freestyle” , “All Mountain” or “Freeride”.
“All mountain” as the phrase suggests. means that the boards should be capable of doing a little on piste, a little Jib or freestyle and a little powder.
“Jib” means that you will want to play around on boxes, rails and other park “toys”.
“Freestyle” means going off jumps (or kickers as they are known) while doing spins, inversions and grabs and any other manner of trick while in the air.
If you are Advanced, you will know by now given the number of seasons under your belt what you are looking for in your next board, so we won’t dwell on this.
Types of boards suited to the type of riding you want to do – Freestyle/Jibbing, All Mountain/All Terrain Freestyle and Freeride/Powder/Back Country.
Freestyle/Jibbing boards tend to be from soft to mid flexing twin shaped boards. The real difference between jib and freestyle being that jib boards tend to be more lose and soft flexing to help lock onto rails and boxes whereas freestyle have more spring and pop in their tail and nose to help get more air off kickers but equally tough to take hard landings.
All Mountain/All Terrain Freestyle has become the trend recently for riders wishing to take their riding out of the park and onto natural jumps, self built powder kickers and piste and powder riding but still wanting to do the odd bit of jibbing.
Freeride/Powder/Back Country boards tend to be slightly longer and wider with directional shapes which lend themselves to riding powder slightly better than the All Mountain boards but none the less are still quite good on piste. The tails are narrow to help it sink while bringing the nose up and out of the fresh snow.
Click on the Board Spectrum guide below to see how some boards “cross over” between different types of riding.