970.726.8882 Winter Park, CO

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Choosing a Snowboard

Snowboards are measured in centimeters (cm). Your board length will depend on your weight, your riding style and the type of conditions you will ride in most often. A shop employee can help you decide on the appropriate length, but the general rule of thumb for beginners is between your chin and the tip of your nose. A lighter boarder may need a shorter length. The waist width will depend on the size of your feet. The toe and heel of your boot should be flush with the edges of the snowboard. This will give you the most leverage and allow you to turn easier.

What’ my stance?

Regular means you put your left foot forward on the board. Goofy is right foot forward. If you skateboard, surf or wakeboard, you probably already know what your stance is. If not, stand with your feet together and have someone push you lightly from behind. Whichever foot you put out first to balance yourself is probably the foot you should have in front, or which foot you kick a ball with or how about a cartwheel. Which foot goes first?

When trying on boots, wear one pair of medium-weight or light-weight socks. The fit should be snug. Your heel should remain in place when you bend your knee and ankle forward.

Make sure there aren't any pressure points or spots that pinch your feet.

Binding stance angles:

Unlike ski bindings, snowboard bindings are designed not to release when you fall. All snowboard bindings are adjustable, allowing you to change the position you stand on the board. The snowboard tech will suggest the angles a beginner should use based on height, weight, or previous experience. Freestyle snowboarders usually have wider stances (feet farther apart) with their feet pointing more directly across the board, while freecarvers have narrower (feet closer together) stances with their feet pointed more toward the front. Freeriders are somewhere in the middle.

Things to Remember

First-time snowboarders should always take a lesson from a qualified instructor. A lesson will help you learn much faster and you probably won't be as sore the next day.

The ski areas offer a variety of lessons for all ages and abilities. Call ahead to the resort to find out about beginner lessons and any special deals that might be available. www.winterparkresort.com or www.granbyranch.com for lesson info.

Don't give up. The first day on a board can be challenging but once you learn the basics, the learning curve for snowboarding is very quick. Stick with it for a few days and you'll soon be riding the whole mountain!

Helpful Tips

Go to the rental shop the day before your first day on the hill, either in the late morning or early afternoon. It will be less crowded and you won’t feel rushed.

Discuss your riding experience with the technician. If you've never been on a snowboard, say that. Be truthful about your ability, it will help the technician set you up with the appropriate equipment.