Choosing the right snowboard can affect your whole performance on the slopes. From your speed, to your balance – having a perfectly selected snowboard is going to help you improve and perfect your snowboarding skills.
If you’ve been snowboarding on rental boards so far, you’ll probably be wondering how to choose the right snowboard, and how to ensure you invest in the right piece of gear.
In this article we’ll go through the various things you’ll want to look out for when choosing your snowboard, and how you can know you’ve picked the right snowboard.
Step 1: Do lots of research
Before stepping into any shop or before buying anything online, do your research! Have a look at brands you like, and look into brands who specialise in the kind of snowboarding you want to be doing. If this is your first board, and you’re just starting out, look for brands that have good variety in their ‘all mountain’, and ‘entry level’ categories.
At the point in your snowboard purchase journey, it’s a good idea to speak to friends who have already bought their own boards. They may be able to recommend a specific type, or warn you off others.
Step 2: Find your ideal length
The width and length of your snowboard will be crucial in ensuring you feel comfortable and confident when using it. A good place to start, generally, is to stand the snowboard next to you and see where the top of it hits you. If it’s just below your chin – this tends to be a good sign it’s about the right length. Another good rule of thumb, is to go for a shorter board in the size range if you’re newer or a beginner to the sport. If you’ve been boarding for years and fancy taking your snowboard off-piste and on powder, then opt for something in the longer size range to give you extra stability and more speed.
Step 3: Find your ideal width
The width of the snowboard is a little easier to work out. Basically the width is dependent on the size of your boots (which means the size of your feet too).
You’ll want to make sure the edges of your boot hang over your snowboard slightly, but not too much (You don’t want them hitting the snow when you’re out on the slopes).
Step 4: Find the right riding style
As we previously mentioned, if you’re a beginner then it’s best to opt for the ‘all-mountain’ or ‘entry level’ boards. These tend to be high performers across a variety of slopes, so they make a good place to start. However, if you have a specific interest when it comes to snowboarding, you might be looking for a specific type of snowboard.
Snowboards generally fall into these categories:
Powder snowboards: A newer design, specifically created for deep powder snow. Usually easy to recognise, as their shape is distinctly different from normal board.
Freeride snowboards: For those who like venturing off the beaten track, these boards offer more advanced features for stability and control. They tend to be stiffer and longer than standard / all-mountain snowboards.
All-mountain snowboards: The best all-rounder, these are very versatile and make a good choice for most riders. They work well on most terrains and the best snowboards in this category can be easily used on groomed snow, crud, powder and icy terrains.
We hope this information helps you find the ideal snowboard for you. Happy boarding!