Snowboarding 101: How to snowboard for beginners

by | Jan 31, 2023 | Snowboarding | 0 comments

A Beginner’s Guide to Shredding the Slopes.

Snowboarding involves standing on a snowboard and descending a snow-covered slope while using your body movements to control your speed and direction. In this article, we’ll break down the key techniques that will have beginner snowboarders riding confidently down the mountain in time and enjoying this thrilling sport.

Learning how to snowboard as a beginner

How to snowboard for beginners: 

1. Start by strapping your snowboard boots into the bindings and adjusting them to fit your boots to get your feet strapped in securely

2. Find a flat, beginner-friendly slope to start on. 

3. Assume a crouched stance, keeping your weight over your front foot, and push off with your rear foot. 

4. Use your body movements to control your speed and direction, including shifting your weight and using your edges to turn. 

5. As you gain speed, start to lean forward to maintain balance and control 

6. Practice riding down the slope and making basic turns until you feel comfortable. 

7. Keep practicing and experimenting with different techniques, such as carving and jumping, to improve your skills. 

Remember, snowboarding is a physically demanding sport that requires proper technique and practice for safety and enjoyment. Consider taking a lesson or two from a certified instructor to help you get started when learning how to snowboard. 

For further helpful tips and more in-depth instructions on how to snowboard as a beginner, and each of the above steps, keep reading: 

How to strap yourself into a snowboard 

Strap yourself into a snowboard by following these steps: 

1. Stand beside your snowboard, facing the bindings. 

2. Step into the binding with your front foot, placing the front of your boot into the bindings with your feet strapped in and lining up the boot’s center with the center of the board. 

3. Push down on the high back of the binding with your heel and pull the straps over your boots, securing them in place.

4. Repeat the process for the back foot, making sure the boot is centered in the binding and the straps are securely fastened. 

5. Check that the straps are tight enough to hold your boots securely in place, but not so tight that they restrict movement or cause discomfort. 

6. Practice standing up, bending your knees, and leaning forward and backward to get a feel for the bindings and ensure they are adjusted properly. 

It’s important to make sure the bindings are adjusted properly for your boots and riding style, so the board responds as desired. It’s also important to practice strapping in and out of the bindings so that it becomes a quick and efficient process on the mountain. 

Strapping yourself into a snowboard

Best place at a ski resort to learn how to snowboard: 

The best hills for beginner snowboarders are those with gentle slopes, a consistent pitch, and good grooming. Some recommended hills for beginner snowboarders include: 

1. Bunny slopes: Bunny slopes are the gentlest slopes on the mountain, specifically designed for beginners. They are typically short, wide, and well-groomed, providing a safe and controlled environment to practice basic skills. 

2. Green runs: These are the easiest runs on the mountain, usually marked with a green circle. They are wider, have a gradual pitch, and are ideal for building confidence and improving technique. There are several types of runs, so remember that green runs are easier when first figuring out how to snowboard.

3. Terrain parks: A terrain snow park can offer beginner-friendly features, such as small jumps and banked turns, that are safe and fun for learning new tricks and building skills.

It’s important for beginner snowboarders to discover how to snowboard on a slope that is well within their ability level, so they can focus on developing good technique and building confidence. It’s also important to take lessons from a certified instructor, who can provide personalized instruction and guidance to help you progress safely and quickly. 

a snowboarder at a ski resort

How to snowboard when getting on and off a ski lift: 

HOW TO SNOWBOARD WHEN Getting on a ski lift

This can be a bit tricky for beginner snowboarders. Here’s how to get on a lift as a snowboarder: 

1. Approach the lift: Stand in the right line and wait for the lift attendant to signal that it’s your turn to get on. 

2. Take off your back foot: As you approach the lift, take your back foot out of the binding and place it on top of the board, so that it’s perpendicular to the board. 

3. Place your board on the lift: Put the front of the board into the lift and make sure it’s securely positioned on the chair. 

4. Sit down: Sit on the chair, keeping your front foot in the binding and your back foot on top of the board. 

5. Secure yourself: Make sure you’re securely attached to the lift with the safety bar or strap, and keep your arms and legs inside the lift at all times. 

6. Enjoy the ride: Sit back and enjoy the ride up the mountain, taking in the views and preparing for your next run. 

When you get off the lift, simply reverse the process by taking off the safety bar or strap, putting your back foot back in the binding, and riding away from the lift. With a little bit of practice, getting on and off ski lifts will become second nature, and you’ll be able to spend more time enjoying the mountain and less time worrying about the lifts. 

HOW TO SNOWBOARD WHEN Getting off a ski lift

This can be a bit tricky as well. Here’s how to get off a lift as a snowboarder: 

1. Prepare for the exit: As you approach the lift exit, start to prepare yourself for getting off by moving your back foot back into the binding. 

2. Take off the safety bar or strap: As you reach the exit, take off the safety bar or strap that was holding you onto the lift. 

3. Turn your board: Turn your board so that it’s pointing down the mountain and in the direction you want to ride. 

4. Stand up: Stand up and put your back foot back into the binding. 

5. Step off the lift: Step off the lift and onto the snow, making sure that your board is clear of the lift and in the right direction. 

6. Ride away: Ride away from the lift and start your next run. 

Getting off a ski lift takes a bit of practice, but with time and patience, you’ll be able to do it smoothly and confidently. Be sure to follow the lift rules and procedures, and always keep your arms and legs inside the lift until you’re safely off the chair. 

A beginner snowboarder getting on and off of a ski lift.

How to turn on a snowboard: 

Turning on a snowboard is achieved by shifting your weight and using the edges of the board. Here is a basic overview of how to turn on a snowboard: 

1. Start by finding a moderate slope and snowboard straight down the hill. 

2. As you approach a turn, transfer your weight onto your front foot. 

3. To initiate the turn, gently press down on the edge of the snowboard with the heel or toe of the front foot. 

4. As the turn begins, keep your eyes focused on the direction you want to go and keep your weight over the front foot. 

5. As the turn progresses, transfer your weight back to your back foot to complete the turn and continue riding down the slope. 

It’s important to practice turning on both the heel and toe edges of the snowboard to develop balance and control. Remember to keep your movements smooth and gradual, especially when starting out. With time and practice, you will develop the skills to turn smoothly and confidently on the mountain. 

How to switch between your toe edge and heel edge on a snowboard: 

How to snowboard when switching from toe edge to heel edge not only helps control your direction but is also a fundamental skill that helps you control your speed while riding.  

Here’s how to do it: 

1. Start by riding on your toe edge. To ride on the toe edge, lean forward and put weight on the front of the board. 

2. To switch to the heel edge, shift your weight back towards your heel and press down on the heel edge of the board. 

3. Keep your knees slightly bent, your eyes forward, your core and upper body tight, and your shoulders level, and use your body movements to maintain balance and control. 

4. As you make the transition, keep your weight centered over the board and adjust your body position as needed to maintain balance and optimal snowboard stance.

5. Once you are comfortable riding on the heel edge, practice alternating between the toe and heel edges as you ride down the slope. 

LEARN HOW TO SNOWBOARD easily and take a snowboard lesson

Once you get the hang of the previous steps, you can try a couple of beginner-friendly tricks like carving and small jumps. 

How to carve on a snowboard for beginners: 

Carving is a technique that involves making sharp turns on a snowboard, using the edges of the board to dig into the snow and create a clean, arc-shaped turn. Here’s how to carve on a snowboard: 

1. Start by riding straight down the hill, maintaining good balance and control. 

2. As you approach a turn, transfer your weight onto the edge of the board that will initiate the turn. 

3. To carve, press down on the edge of the board with the heel or toe of the foot that is closest to the turn. 

4. Keep your knees slightly bent, eyes focused on the direction of the turn, and shoulders level, and use your body movements to control the turn. 

5. As the turn progresses, keep your weight over the edge of the board and lean into the turn, allowing the board to dig into the snow and carve a clean arc. 

6. To exit the turn, release the edge and return to a flat base, riding straight down the hill. 

It’s important to practice carving on both the heel and toe edges of the board and to make sure the bindings are adjusted properly for your boots and riding style.  

A snowboarder leaning over right foot to carve down the mountain.

How to jump on a snowboard for beginners: 

Jumping on a snowboard can be challenging for beginners, but with the right techniques and plenty of practice, you can soon be making your first jumps. Here’s how to jump on a snowboard as a beginner: 

1. Start by riding down a small, gentle slope and gradually build up speed. 

2. Approach the jump with your weight forward on the board with bent knees. 

3. As you reach the lip of the jump, use your back leg to push off and launch into the air. 

4. Keep your arms outstretched and maintain a level body position while in the air. 

5. Land with your knees bent and your weight centered over the board. 

6. Practice landing softly, with your knees bent and your weight centered over the board to absorb the impact of the landing. 

Start small and gradually build up to larger jumps and wear proper safety gear, including a helmet and padding, when attempting to jump on a snowboard. It takes time and practice to figure out how to snowboard, but with time, you’ll be able to master the basics of jumping on a snowboard and progress to more advanced tricks and techniques. 

Learn to snowboard and do snowboard jumps

Is snowboarding hard? 

To learn how to snowboard means learning how to balance, turn, stop, and control your board on the slopes, and maintaining a proper snowboard stance takes time, practice, and patience. How hard it depends on how familiar you are with any of those aspects. However, with the right attitude, proper technique, and a good instructor, snowboarding can be a fun and rewarding experience. 

It’s normal to experience falls and frustration at first, but don’t let this discourage you. Most snowboarders say that the feeling of carving down the mountain and performing tricks is worth the effort. 

Everyone learns at their own pace, and it’s important to set realistic goals for yourself and to be patient with your progress. With persistence, dedication, and a positive attitude, you can master the art of snowboarding and enjoy the thrill of riding the slopes. 

Wearing waterproof snow pants while learning how to snowboard
Common questions from beginner snowboarders:

Can I teach myself to snowboard?

Sure thing! And you’re off to a great start by reading this article. Check out our other articles for more tips.

However, it may be beneficial to take snowboarding lessons from a professional snowboard instructor to ensure proper technique and safety. You could do group lessons or private lessons. Additionally, snowboard instructors can accelerate the learning process.

Another option is to take a friend with you who is familiar with snowboarding and learn from them.

“Is snowboarding easy to learn?”

Anyone is capable of snowboarding when they are motivated. It’s easy to learn when you are healthy, have experience in similar sports such as snowboarding, surfing, and skateboarding, or have been on the slopes. Be patient with yourself and take a snowboarding lesson to boost your confidence.

Is it easier to ski or snowboard?

Good question! We wrote a blog specifically about this. Check it out here. And if you’re looking for a beginner’s guide to skiing, check out this article.

A beginner snowboarder locating the best ski resorts

Now get out there and hit some slopes!

If you liked this article, you might also like “how to size a snowboard”.

Thanks for reading,

Travel Vibes


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