Snowboarding is quite a popular sport done mainly for recreation though it is also done professionally. It is estimated that about 3.4 million people in the United States snowboard. There are three basic snowboarding styles:
Free ride snowboarding
This is the best style to start with if you are a beginner in snowboarding. Basically, it involves standing on the board and riding down the mountain or hill. The snow boards used here are longer and narrower.
This is snowboarding done with the focus being making clean, curved turns.
It is the most popular snowboard style where the snowboarder performs jumps, spins and other acrobatics. It is mainly used in competitive snowboarding.
How to dress for Snowboarding
It is vital to dress appropriately before you begin snowboarding as this helps to avoid injuries. Warm clothing is essential to protect yourself from the cold weather. Ensure you have a snow coat, snow pants and thermal layers. The clothing should be insulated, lightweight and waterproof. The snow coat should be long enough to cover your midriff and the snow pants should fit loosely so that you are able to move your legs easily. Snow gloves are also needed. Some snowboarders may prefer mittens instead of gloves but whatever your preference, it should have insulated liners to absorb moisture and perspiration and should be waterproof. Wrist guards may be worn especially by the beginners under the gloves so that in case they fall, they are protected from injury. Snow goggles are essential to protect the eyes from direct sunlight, ultraviolet radiation, wind and particulate matter. It is also mandatory to wear a crash helmet whether you are a beginner or an expert in order to protect your head. Most snowboarding helmets have inbuilt insulation to keep your head warm. Ensure that your helmet fits properly.
Freestyle Snowboarding equipment
The actual snowboarding equipment consists of the boots, the bindings and the snowboard. There are specially designed snowboarding boots with either step in or strap in bindings used to attach the boots to the snowboards. One should ensure to wear the boots properly. Boots can either be hard or soft.
For this style, soft boots are preferred as they provide the rider with comfort, great support and more ankle flexibility. The freestyle snowboards are shorter, wider, flexible and more stable allowing the snowboarder to jump, spin or try any other trick he wishes.
How to approach and practice freestyle snowboarding
Before you can snowboard using the free style, it is important that you train yourself mentally and physically. Before you can try out a trick, visualize it. When training, train with a specific trick in mind. Physical training will ensure that you are in a good shape that that your muscles are flexible. You could go to the gym, run walk, bike, do squats, push ups or stretch your entire body to build your body’s strength and make it more flexible in order to execute your tricks.
Most importantly, believe in yourself!