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Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by Firstime Caller, Mar 1, 2008.

  1. I'm hitting the slopes.

    I've been on skis a few times before. I've never tried snowboarding before though, but I was thinking of taking lessons.

    What I was wondering though is what is snowboarding like? I've heard it's pretty different than skiing. Is it like surfing? Like skateboarding?

    I was just trying to decide if I should try snowboarding (with lessons) or stick with skiing.
  2. Rumpleforeskin

    Rumpleforeskin Active Member

    Take lessons if you are going to try snowboarding. I would stick with skiing. Get the short skis, the trick skis, if you really want to try to do snowboard stuff. They work wonders. Just stay out of the trees.
  3. BYH

    BYH Active Member

  4. sportschick

    sportschick Active Member

    Snowboarding is much easier than skiing as far as time it takes to get decent.

    I'd take lessons though. At the very least, you'll learn how to fall so you don't FUBAR your knee.
  5. In Exile

    In Exile Member

    Everyone I know says that although you'll spend your first day on your ass, in three days you'll surpass your skill level on skis. Everyone also says to get the gloves with wrist guards, that prevents your wrist from breaking when you inevitably fall backwards and try to break your fall.

    Definitely take a lesson. I just chaperoned 40 kids to go skiing/snowboarding. Most of the snowboarding kids, despite never having done it before, were convinced they knew how (from skateboarding) and very few took lessons. They had a lousy time. The second time, they almost all accepted a lesson and those who had taken a lesson the first time were way, way way ahead.
  6. Tom Petty

    Tom Petty Guest

  7. I've done it once. It's very different. On ski's you feel like you have a little control when you're just starting out. On a snowboard, it feels like your feet are sliding out from under you the whole time. It's a weird sensation, but I imagine it gets easier.
  8. I'm a damned good skier ... it's the stopping I always struggled with.

    I tore up my collar bone in the Poconos some years back after I bounced off the plastic that keeps you from flying off the mountain, landed on my head and then rolled downhill a couple of miles.

    Good times, good times.
  9. Big Buckin' agate_monkey

    Big Buckin' agate_monkey Active Member

    That sounds like it was pretty gnarly, dude.
  10. Ok, so I went and tried it - briefly. I think I wound up going to a REALLY bad place to ski/board today.

    I go to rent the equipment. I say I've never been on a board and am taking a lesson. They ask me if I know if I want a right-footed and left-footed board. Since I've never never snowboarded of course I don't really know, so I chooose right because when I've attempted to surf my right leg has been in the back.

    So then comes the "lesson." First the guy explains how you should put on sunblock, wear sunglasses, wear gloves because snow is cold and the different types of snow. All good stuff for people completely unfamiliar with snow; I'm familiar with snow. Unfortunately, that was the stuff he spent most of the time on - for the part of the lesson that I stuck around for at least.

    Everything else I stuck around for he explained REALLY quickly. He briefly explained how to get one foot into the bindings and on the board. Next is when I discovered that I had chosen the wrong footed board. Because then he showed us how to go down the bottom part of the run. Well, it turns out in snowoarding that you put your weight on the front foot. And I would have MUCH rather that have been my right foot than my left foot. So everybody in the class went down the bottom part of the run straight once. Then he briefly explained a toe turn (how to turn in one direction) and we each went down the hill once trying to do that. Next he quickly explained how to do a heel turn (turning the other way.) Then we were off to the lift. Most people slld on over quickly where I guess we were going to get our briefing of how to get on and off the lift and presumably how to get down the mountain. I had to guess on that part becuase I only made it over for the last part of the briefing. (While I was struggling to get there, I could see that he had been explaining stuff for a few minutes. Unfortunately, I couldn't hear anything.) When I finally did get over there, he was explaining how you didn't want to fall when getting off the lift because the people coming in the next chair could kick you in the head.

    Well, seeing as I had gotten NO explanation off how to get on and off the lift, when he asked if everybody was ready, I said no. He said I could go up in the same chair as him.

    I'd thought that this lesson was pretty bad so far. We'd had very little explanation of any how-to on the snowboard. We hadn't been told much about how to "properly" fall, we hadn't been told at all how to stop and we'd barely been told how to move on the snowboard at all. Now I have fallen and broken my elbow on the ice. So I just felt WAY too uncomfortable to continue and just quit.

    I actually did complain about how bad the lesson was. And the school instructor said that the guy was the best instructor. And then she offered me a lesson with somebody else. I told her, if that was the best, I really didn't want a lesson with anybody else. The lesson I'd paid for included a lift ticket for the day session. We had wanted to say for the night session. So I wound up getting the add-on night session of skiing for free.

    So then I rode up the lift I was about to head up on the snowboard. Oh my god, I am glad I quit when I did, because if I hadn't I probably would have had too many broken bones to type this. I'm a decent beginner skiier. (I went for 4.5 hours today and didn't fall once.) To me though, this was a fast and slick landing area to get off the lift. And then this was a pretty steep hill to go down considering how little we had done down at the bottom. And the snow conditions weren't the greatest at this place today. (My spouse and I both thought that.)

    So it turned out that I had fun skiing today. No thanks to the jerks working at this place - some of the lift operators and some of the other people around the park were idiots, too. But that would be a whole different post.
  11. bigpern23

    bigpern23 Well-Known Member

    Sounds like you had a pretty shitty instructor.

    I went snowboarding for the first time on New Year's Eve and got an excellent lesson and took to it fairly quickly. Unfortunately, being a journalist doesn't lend itself equipment rentals and lift tickets every weekend, so I'm not getting out the way I would like to.

    While it definitely helps to have the proper board (I ride goofy ... with my right foot forward), it's also crucial to learn how to lead with your off-foot as well.

    My instructor never gave us anything about how "properly" fall or, specifically, how to stop. He spent the majority of the time teaching us how to control board (as you mentioned with heel turns and toe turns). Stopping is really just an extension of the control you gain by learning how to ride your edges. It's almost an intuitive extension of that.

    As for properly falling, I'm not sure there is a technique to use (if there is, we didn't learn it). Just do what doesn't get you killed.

    I suggest you not let that lousy lesson discourage you. It sounds like you got the basics and, with a proper board, you might be able to learn the rest on your own. But if you're still not confident with it, try a different mountain. Maybe the lesson there will be better.
  12. I don't know. I'd maybe try another lesson at a different place. Ironically, the same thing happened to me with scuba diving. The first quick while a tourist lesson I had was horrible and scared me away from scuba diving. Then I took more extensive lessons, and now I love diving. I don't think I'd try snowboarding again without another lesson though because I never learned how to get off the lift, and anything that came after that. Even if I wanted to muddle my way around with how to actually move about on the snowboard, which I don't, I don't think I'd want to try it again without having it explained to me how to get on and off the lift (without killing myself.)
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