Buying a Snowboard

Buying a Snowboard
Owning your own snowboard means no rental fees and no awkward fits. Buying your own snowboard enables you to not only choose a personalized piece of equipment that suits your character but also one that is tuned exactly to your size, stance and activities. Investing in an item such as a snowboard is no small task though. There are several things to consider before buying a snowboard and several ways to make sure you pick out the right one.


Difficulty: Moderate

Step 1
Consider what type of snowboarder you are. If you have never been snowboarding or only rented one a few times, then a freestyle board will be best. Freestyle boards have the most stable design of all boards. They have a wider waist, more flex and are slightly shorter than freeride or all mountain boards. Freestyles are easier to turn and are often preferred for terrain park tricks.
Freeride boards are good if you plan to do it all. If you want to surf powder but also enter the halfpipe, then these boards are good. This is the most common style of board purchased and suits a wide range of riders. If you are planning on racing, then you will want an alpine board, which is narrower than the others and looks like giant ski. These are built for speed and not for beginners.
Step 2
Search the gear reviews in outdoor and snowboard magazines and in online forums. Talk to people you know who snowboard and listen to their recommendations. Once you know the style of board you are looking for, start to deduce which ones you might like and which ones you can scratch off your list.
Step 3
Go to your local snowboard shop and inspect the boards in stock. If you are looking for a freestyle board, then start looking at what brands make designs you like and which ones fit your style.
Step 4
Measure what size board you are going to need. Boards are measured in centimeters from 100 to 180. If you are buying a freestyle board it should be a bit shorter than if you were buying a freeride board. In general, a shorter, lighter person should have a shorter board with more flex than a heavier, taller person. A good freestyle length for a person that is 5 feet 6 inches and 130 pounds is 146 centimeters and a good freeride length is 154 centimeters. The width of the board should also be taken into consideration. Make sure your boots won't overhang the edge of the board when bindings are mounted. Narrow down your choices to the boards with graphics that you like and are also your size.
Step 5
Determine your final pick. Genuine quality is a must. The snowboard you buy should have a P-tex base, metal edges, wood or foam core and a fiberglass topsheet. Price, too, is a determining factor for many. Once you know what you're looking for, you can look for it on sale. If you aren't sure if this is the sport you are going to spend a lot of time on, you may want to buy an entry level or mid-range board instead of a top-of-the-line board.


Article Written By Naomi Judd

Naomi M. Judd is a naturalist, artist and writer. Her work has been published in various literary journals, newspapers and websites. Judd holds a self-designed Bachelor of Arts in adventure writing from Plymouth State University and is earning a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from the University of Southern Maine.

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