The Different Snowboarding Styles
Snowboarding has become a sport for the old and young to enjoy. Its popularity has increased enormously just within the last 5 years. With the increase of fans picking snowboarding over other mountain sports, it has made diversified the sport into different riding styles. These styles are unique to one another, but still offer a challenge for those who dare to try.
Before getting into what the 3 styles of snowboarding are, it is important to understand that the style of boarding that is preferred will directly effect the type of board and gear a rider will need in order to hit the slopes. Using the wrong kind of gear will make it extremely difficult to be successful. Freeriding, freestyle, and alpine are the 3 styles of riding snowboarders have to choose from.
Let’s look at freeriding a little more closely to understand what it means to “freeride”. Boarders who choose this style of riding typically love the deep powder. They focus on being a well rounded rider who can master the art of carving, riding, and jumping on any kind of terrain they can find. Freeriders do not do tricks and mainly stay on the ground. However, freeriders can perform jumps and aerial maneuvers. Whenever a big snowfall hits, freeriders will leave the main slopes and hit unchartered areas in resorts or go off-piste. The boards for this kind of snowboarding style are typically longer and narrower at the waist. There is a much greater definition in sidecut and the rider’s feet are position further back on the tail of the board.
The next style of riding is called freestyle. This has grown immensely popular with the younger fans of snowboarding. Those who choose to ride by this style are fascinated with the rush snowboarding can offer to its rider. They love to perform aerial tricks, twists, jumps on and off the air. Typically a rider of this style would use a snow park. Within a snow park there are ramps, rails, halfpipes and other obstacles for a boarder to perform tricks. This is considered the most wild style of boarding. A board for someone considering it would be shorter, lighter, but much fatter in the waist. Since these boarders come down on either side of the board, the tail and tip of the board are identical in shape.
The last type of boarding style is called alpine. Over the years it has lost its popularity with the younger generation of snowboarding fans. However, choosing this kind of boarding involves great strength and endurance. A rider of this style focuses on high speed carving. Doing maneuvers like this requires the rider to be at an advanced boarder. The board for someone interested in this kind of boarding is a longer, narrower board at the waist, but also very stiff to give stability while carving.
No matter what style, snowboarding can be a sport for all who choose to try it. Before spending a lot of hard-earned cash just be sure of which style is best for you.