Snowboarding basics: skidded turns
For many beginners, executing different skidded turns can be rather challenging and unnerving. The twists and turns in snowboarding make you feel like you are going to fall. Of course turning is absolutely essential to riding a snowboard and the feeling of loosing control goes away with time and practice.
A skidded turn and a linked skidded turn are one of the first turns that you should learn. There are several ways to make these turns on the slopes but the basics of the turns are the same. A skidded turn is a turn preformed while your snowboard is skidding across the slope. This is very useful for slopes that may have hard packed snow or ice.
Basic skidded turns
Back leg technique
First lets look at performing a basic skidded turn. Begin practicing your skidded turns on a slope that you are comfortable with. Start by riding down the slope with your knees bent slightly. Make sure your shoulders face in the direction that you wish to travel. As you ride down the slope pick a point where you will execute your turn. When you approach this point simply push your back leg out. This action forces your snowboard to skid along its side down the hill. Now shift your weight onto your front foot and you will begin to move in the direction that your snowboard is pointing.
Snowboard raising technique
While this is the basic procedure for a skidded turn, there are some finer points to keep in mind that will almost seem like another technique. When you are skidding down a hill raising one end of your snowboard to a higher angle than the other will also make it turn. The reason that this works is because the end of your snow board that has a higher angle will bite in to the snow a little harder than the other end thus causing that end to slow down and force the snowboard to rotate.
Hip rotation technique
Another option that sometimes favored is the hip rotation technique. And begin by skidding down a hill. When you are ready to turn simply rotate your hips in the direction that you wish your snowboard to rotate. Rotating your hips will naturally cause your body to shift its weight to accomplish the turn and push the correct end of the snowboard in the direction that it needs to go to turn.
Which method is more correct depends upon you and what you wish to get out of snowboarding. The easiest option is the third way, to rotate your hips. The most technical way that also builds up skill for other maneuvers is the second way. The key is to get out there and try each method to see what works for you.
When you are on the slopes practicing your turns you may also wish to practice a linked skidded turn. A linked skidded turn is the act of going from your skidded turn to another. One important point is to make sure that you allow a few seconds to travel before turning in the other direction. Avoid turning too quickly and catching the downhill edge of your snowboard. This action might prompt you to bail out very fast.
Learning and practicing skidded turns are an essentially part of snowboarding and depending upon the style you prefer may help you with other tricks that you will soon be learning. Try each of the techniques mentioned here and learn to use each method regardless of what your favorite method is. This extra experience will make you more confident on the slopes and will round out your skills thus opening more doors later on when you are ready to try new tricks