Snowboarding is one of the thrilling snow activities or sport that people wish to perform when they see first-time snow or anyone doing snowboarding. It is a sports activity that involves going down on a snow-covered slope while standing on a snowboard.
It seems easy while watching people snowboard but it is really that easy? In this article, I will answer the same question, later in the article, I will also share some tips to learn snowboarding quicker and in a more efficient way.
So, Stay Tuned!
Is Snowboarding Hard?
Snowboarding is not a very hard sport but Controlling a snowboard is very hard, stopping and changing direction is the hardest part of Snowboarding. Learning the basics and reaching the beginner level in snowboarding is relatively harder than learning the advanced skills.
It is very easy to pick up once you learn the basic required skills.
Snowboarding might look hard at first to learn as you can put your both feet on only one board. But coming from personal experience, it is far easy to slide in snowboarding but controlling is hard as I mentioned above as well.
Your progression as a beginner is heavily dependent on the competence of your coach and your determination.
I have seen some people who have tried snowboarding and gave up after one day because they find it too hard. And I’ve seen others who struggled and give their best on learning snowboarding and now are loving to snowboard more than anyone else.
Snowboarding will take some perseverance to carry on and get through the stage of falling over again and again in the first few days. But you’ll eventually pick it up quickly and have a blast even on your first day. Even if not, it will take a few days more for you to learn snowboarding.
What You Have to Learn In Snowboarding?
You basically have to learn the following things in Snowboarding:
- Balancing on the Snowboard (Easy)
- Sliding Down (Easy)
- Taking Turns (Hard)
- Stopping (Hard)
- Snowboarding On Moghuls (Bumps)
What Is the Hardest Part Of Snowboarding?
The hardest part of snowboarding that many beginners feel is getting used to a board, it feels weird when having a board attached to your feet. Secondly, controlling (stopping & turning) the snowboard is oftentimes many newbies face problem in but these problems can be solved with some practice.
How Long Does It Take To Learn Snowboarding?
On average, it takes 2-3 days or sessions to learn the basics down and not falling as much in snowboarding. The time to learn snowboarding depends on persons to persons and if the person is taking good lessons, in fact, riders that have surfed or skateboarded before may learn quicker within few hours of practice.
For most beginners, there will be falling multiple times. The basics of riding down are the easy part and you may learn with just a few laps but learning to make simple turns, and stopping will take some time. You will be spending your time on increasing speed, finessing turns, and taking your riding to the next level on the slopes while learning to snowboard.
By working more on improving balance, you can start to hit the proper slopes and make turning slightly easier. Because these two things can make turning more easier due to there being less contact between snow and the base of the board, which lessens the resistance when turning.
Is Snowboarding Harder Than Skiing?
Snowboarding is initially harder than skiing because in skiing, you can move your both legs independently and you travel with your body facing the same way as your feet. But in snowboarding, having both feet attached to a single board can be difficult and unsettling, this takes more time in getting used to.
Controlling skis is easier than snowboarding while balancing is where most people face problems. It is easy to learn the basics of skiing but it is much harder to actually master it. On the other hand, turning and stopping on a snowboard is hard, it is relatively harder to learn the basics of snowboarding but once you learn the basics, it is very easy to pick up.
Ski poles are very beneficial when trying to traverse flat terrain which makes controlling skis easier but snowboarding doesn’t have this feature. Snowboarders have to only rely on gravity and will need to unclip a foot from bindings to move on flat ground.
From my experience, even if snowboarding is harder to start with, it’s worth it in the long run. The first few laps of snowboarding are usually harder on your body, you’ll feel the struggle and will fall over again and again while turning and stopping – I fall whenever I tried to turn on the snowboard.
If you like things a little bit rough and are willing to try adventurous things, then you should try snowboarding. But whatever you choose to try, both experiences will give you an exciting feeling. Take some proper lessons and listen carefully to your instructor.
Factors Affecting The Pace & Ease Of Learning To Snowboard
To ease your fear of going skiing, I have mentioned some factors below that influence the pace as well as ease of learning to snowboard:
Good Lessons / Good trainer
Probably the biggest factor, Learning to snowboard depends a lot on the training you are getting from your coach or friend. The better your training lessons are, the better you will understand to learn to snowboard.
A good coach or professional trainer or your friend will teach you better lessons on learning to snowboard. But in the beginning stages, the lessons would be incredibly useful. You just make sure that you listen to your trainer carefully.
I went snowboarding without taking any lessons which were probably my biggest mistake, I struggled a lot and gave up after 2 days (thought snowboarding is bullish*t & no fun) but I went snowboarding again in the next winters with my friends – one of my friends had a lot of experience in snowboarding and I was able to learn snowboarding quickly and in a far better way and now I realized that it is really pretty fun.
Prior Sports Experience
If you’ve any prior experience in similar sports activity like skateboarding, surfing or skiing, then with some skills you’ll be catching up on snowboarding very easily than others. If you know how to ski, then you know how to navigate mountains and you’ll be comfortable when transitioning to a snowboard.
Keep in mind these two sports are vastly different things but you can still gain an extra edge from the knowledge of skiing.
One of my friends knew how to skateboard and he was really able to learn snowboarding quicker but the difference was not that much but still, it really works.
Strength And Fitness
Fitness should come first in mind while learning a new skill or sport. Because the more you are fit and healthy, the longer you’ll be able to learn that sport activity. If you lack strength, you might get tired quickly while learning.
And first few days of learning snowboarding will require a lot of strength, as there will be riding and falling all over again. Snowboarding requires constantly shift your body weight and twist your hips and entire body right and left. So, this will need a lot of muscle to ride for 8 hours and come back the next day with no health issues.
That’s obvious, the more you go snowboarding and the more determined you’ll be of snowboarding, the quicker you’ll learn. It just only the early stages of learning that will be going to be tough but with more practice and frequent going to snowboard, you’ll learn eventually.
Tips To Learn Snowboarding Quicker
Now, though we have talked a lot about the factors and toughness of snowboarding, below are some tips I learned and tips that experienced snowboarders told me about.
Make Sure You Have The Right Board
Having the right board can make your experience better. As a newbie, you should look for a board that has a rocker camber as they place rocker in between your feet and camber underneath your every foot. Rocker helps make the board more catch-free so that you won’t catch your edges as much while learning to turn.
Camber helps the edge to dig while initiating turns. So, rocker camber is great for learning to turn. And also focus on having all proper gear that fits you well, such as boots, gloves, snow clothes, etc.
Take Snowboarding Lessons
If you wish to enjoy and actually learn snowboarding, invest your money in taking some lessons in snowboarding. The instructor will teach you all the basics, this is far better than learning by yourself. These lessons will help you learn the basics of snowboarding and become a better border faster. This is a must in my opinion.
If one of your friends has prior experience in snowboarding, then you may not take lessons as your friend would teach you.
As I said earlier as well, I went snowboarding without taking lessons and my experience was terrible.
Look Around And Turn Your Body Where You Want To Go
For beginners, it is an important tip to learn snowboarding. People usually look towards the ground or the bottom of the hill all the time instead of looking towards the direction they want to go. You should align your body with the direction you’re looking.
Because when you shift your whole body in the right direction, your board will follow naturally. I’d recommend this advice to beginners, as this one helps learn snowboarding.
Practice On The Bunny Slopes
For people who are going to the mountains first time and are trying to snowboard, I’d suggest you practice your snowboarding on the bunny slopes ( a gentle slope suitable for beginners).
Because going down the bunny hills will give you more freedom to learn that the slopes can’t. This will give you an idea of what you’re doing so that once you’re on the slopes, you’ll be more confident.
Getting Started With Snowboarding
Once you’ve made up your mind about snowboarding, nothing is stopping you. You wear your proper pieces of equipment and step out on the snow with your board. You’ll feel a different feeling while taking your first drive in snowboarding.
Getting started with snowboarding isn’t that hard, all you need is proper guidance and a fearless mind. You’ll eventually go snowboarding for many rounds once you’ll become perfect.
Is Snowboarding Dangerous?
Snowsports are inherently dangerous with each carrying risk. Snowboarding is easier to pick up but there is a risk of some serious injuries. Fractures and sprains are the most common injuries among snowboarders. Beginners are a high chance of getting injured. It is risky for riding alone, one can get hurt or lost in mountains.
I’d not recommend you doing snowboarding alone if you’re not an experience glade rider. But if you want to try these snow sports, I would suggest you go with a professional trainer and consider the above tips for learning snowboarding. It can be worth getting some extra padding for your first week of snowboarding as it’ll keep you from seriously injuring or bruising yourself on the slopes.
Snowboarding is hard to learn but not the hardest sport. It is hard to learn the basics and takes a lot of time to learn to control the board. But, once you know the basics and learned to control, it becomes very easy to ride, a lot of fun, and it becomes easier for you now to reach the advanced level.