A common thing to encounter when snowboarding is a thing called moguls. Moguls are an array of small bumps that are close together. These bumps can be caused by riders constantly riding over and compacting snow, by elements under the snow or added to a run to create more excitement.
Regardless of why the moguls are there, the techniques required for riding them is the same. The most important thing to bear in mind is your stance. Make sure that you approach and go over moguls at a moderate controlled speed while staying relaxed and being ready to adapt to the changes you will encounter. Staying loose is the key to not loosing your balance.
Turning while encountering moguls can be very challenging. Since the level of the ground is constantly changing it is very easy to catch an edge and bail. To avoid catching an edge you must stay limber. Bend your ankles and knees to bring them as close to your chest as possible while staying low to the ground. This will allow you to absorb the effects of the moguls while lowering your center of gravity and thus giving you more control.
Beginners may find it beneficial to increase their balance when first attempting moguls. The easiest way to increase your balance is to spread your arms straight out. Your arms will act as counter balances to any sudden motions that your body will make thus giving you more time to react to the situation while learning.
Another important point to consider is using the bumps to your advantage. For example, the best place to turn your snowboard is on the ridges that form the moguls. Many people like to approach smaller moguls and then change direction by doing a skidded turn as they crest the mogul.
While thinking of turning it is important to point out that it is very difficult, if not impossible, to turn at certain times. One specific example would be when traversing in the valley between two moguls. When is this type of situation your only option is to wait until you are higher up on the moguls or have exited the moguls some other way before trying to turn.
The final tip to keep in mind is to be aware of the paths that others have left behind. Following someone else’s path can teach you the proper course to follow when challenging moguls as well as helping you learn how to turn and when.
Learning to ride moguls is an important part of learning to snowboard and getting the most out of your terrain. While you may not encounter extreme moguls such as those that are added to a hill, it is very possible for you to find then when riding any backcountry trail. Knowing how to ride moguls and what to do when you encounter them will definitely extend you snowboard pleasure and make you a more rounded snowboarder.