Is Snowboarding Hard? | Challenging Aspects Of Snowboarding


Do you plan to pick up snowboarding in your free time, and are you concerned about how hard it will be for a beginner? Snowboarding experts often say that snowboarding is difficult when you’re just getting hold of the basics but is it hard to learn? Can anyone with enough effort be able to perform well on the snow?

Snowboarding can take a lot of work to learn at the preliminary stages. Once the basics are mastered, the learning experience becomes smooth, and it just requires time and consistent effort. On the whole, it’s important to practice hard at the start, but it is easier to progress to advanced levels. 

So, you have decided to take the leap? What is the investment required? How fast will your journey be, and how can you accelerate your progress? We cover it all for you!

Is Snowboarding Difficult to Learn?

Many people are curious about snowboarding, and they give it their best. However, they quit the sport after some time because they couldn’t get the hang of it.

Hence, many pros reserve the opinion that snowboarding is hard to learn at the start but easier to master once you get the hang of the basics.

If you’re looking to learn to snowboard and are thinking about the time and commitment required, we have you covered.

Snowboarding, like everything else in the world, just requires a little bit of time and effort!

In our experience, the time taken to learn just the basics, and by basics, we mean riding down the hill without falling, differs from person to person, but usually, most people have the hang of it over a week or two.

So the question of whether snowboarding is hard to learn and master depends on the person and their motivation to succeed.

Things that can really speed up your progress are concentration and training and having the confidence to pull through the initial frustrations from learning something new.

And when you do, the reward is well worth it. The most difficult phase in the learning experience is your first day shredding the snow.

Under these circumstances, the best thing you can do is to just calm yourself, take it slow, and give yourself the time to learn the voluntary and involuntary muscle movements to take control of the snowboard.

Remember that it’s normal for new riders to spend their entire 1st day of riding trying to maintain balance without falling from their boards.

Here are some of the challenging aspects of snowboarding:

Is Snowboarding Difficult to Learn

1. You Have to Get Used to the Weather

It might sound pretty obvious, but snowboarding involves snow, which means the weather will be cold. Apart from this, you must prepare for unpredictable weather patterns usually observed on the slopes.

From strong and cold winds to extreme cold, a snowboarder has to put up with any challenges the hills bring about.

Some people love this thrilling aspect of the sport, but this can easily frustrate newbies into submission after spending a day with a wet bum after falling repeatedly.

2. Falling Is Common  

The core basics of snowboarding are simple balancing. You need to train your body to make those subtle physical movements that allow you to stay upright at all times.

Unfortunately, this is a challenging task for someone new to riding. Couple this with a bit of speed, and you’ll end up falling a lot.

This is a very frustrating experience and can even result in a broken bone or two. But this is a common experience for all snowboarders, and it definitely gets easier.

3. Getting the Essentials Right 

To tip the odds in your favor for a successful time riding, you must come prepared to take on all the challenges.

The right gear to keep you warm is essential for a pleasant day on the hill. You should have:

  • A base layer to keep you dry.
  • A mid layer for warmth.
  • An outer layer to block out the moisture and keep you safe from the wind.

You’ll need to wear gloves, warm socks, goggles, and a helmet for extra safety. You don’t need the top-of-the-line, costly gadgets to keep you safe.

Just get some quality snowboarding gear from a known brand. This should give you the confidence to tackle cold weather and help you successfully complete your first day of shredding in snow.  

It also helps if you can do some squats and lunges as a warm-up before riding. This is to train your body as the muscles will have to endure pressure when shredding.

At the end of the day, snowboarding is a physical activity; staying fit while practicing can go a long way to fasten up your learning experience.    

4. It’s All About You

Each rider is unique, so this is about your approach to learning. Some people adapt to the experience quickly, while others may need help despite consistent efforts.

Hence depending on your aptitude, you might have early success or require more time than the average rider. But it’s always possible as long you keep going with your training.

People who have already mastered other sports that require a delicate balancing of body weight, like skateboarding and surfing, can easily learn snowboarding compared to those who are beginners and have had no experience with those sports.

Lessons Are Recommended

You might wonder, “Can I learn everything on my own?”. It’s possible — is our answer to this question. But should you? Yes, there is a chance that you might discover and learn everything on your own.

Yet, approaching the pros for your learning is a much safer and easier method. Depending on your budget, you could go for private lessons or attend lessons alongside others on the same journey.

Based on the average time taken to learn, which is a week or two, it is easy to consider learning everything independently with practice, trial, and error.

But you should keep in mind that these lessons are affordable and usually worth their price for what they offer. 

The instructors are experienced riders who know precisely what newcomers to the sport struggle with and base their training routines on a smooth experience from start to finish. They know their stuff!

Another downside of the self-teaching trial and error process is that at some point, you might get irritated at the mistakes that you make and just quit altogether.

Having an instructor skips all of this as they can pinpoint exactly where you are going wrong and offers steps to help you correct your issue.

Whether you’re going to self-learn or approach the pros, here are the things you should consider before venturing out on your very first snowboarding journey.

Lessons Are Recommended

1. Focus on Fun and Learning

Many newcomers focus on the fear and failure of not catching up with other riders, and they forget they’re in an environment that is still adapting.

The solution is to focus on fun and learning and nothing else. The more you do this, the better your riding will be, and you will soon notice the confidence boost resulting from upskilling yourself through effort.

Don’t force yourself into learning, have fun riding; the learning takes care of itself, and you eventually catch up with others.

2. Plan It on Weekdays

One of the things that you can do for a more leisurely experience is to plan your lessons on weekdays.

It will be less crowded, drastically reducing the chances of crashing into other riders, and you will be free to concentrate on your learning. This will cause less stress and will radically improve your riding ability.

How to Get Good at Snowboarding?

Alright, you have taken those first few steps, and now you can shred on the snow comfortably. But what are ways of further improving your craft?

When will you be able to perform those crazy tricks that you see in tournaments? In time. Before that, here are a few tips that you can follow to aid you in that journey:

1. Go for a Hybrid Profile

We recommend beginners usually start with an all-mountain board with a rocker-camber profile. These are also known as hybrid rocker profiles.

This combination is excellent for beginners who are crafting their turns. The rocker profile is set in the middle of the board, and the camber at the front and back of the board is below the feet.

This allows riders to initiate turns much easier without catching an edge. They also feel much looser to handle than a traditional camber board and float better on fresh snow.

On the other hand, a hybrid camber with a rocker at the front and back and a camber set in the middle offers good control, stability, and speed.

Based on the feel you prefer, you could go with either of these hybrid profiles for your snowboard and come out on top.  

2. Get the Right Sized Board

Other things to consider when getting a snowboard are the length and width configurations, which are based on the size of your boots.

If the board’s width is too wide in relation to your boots, you will have trouble controlling the board and initiating turns.

If it’s too small, your boots will drag on the snow when turning, significantly impacting your performance.

The length of the snowboard also affects its performance. Your height is a critical determining factor when considering the appropriate length of a snowboard.

It is generally recommended that the size should be the same length measured from the ground to your chin.

3. Stay Away From Ice

To navigate the much harder runs, you need to analyze the slopes and determine the best one for your skill level.

And it is highly recommended that you start with freshly groomed runs and light, fresh snow instead of ice when you are just learning your way around the trails.

Sure, hard-packed snow is excellent for speed, but without the control and required skill level to slow down your snowboard, these steep slopes can mean trouble and should be avoided until you’re confident with the basics.

Thus, the light and fluffy snow is always a better starting point for new riders.

4. Understand the Learning Curve

Things will be easier if you understand the learning curve of snowboarding. Your journey as a beginner will become much smoother once you know how to link your turns without falling over.

The intricate movement of your front and back feet, head then, shoulders, and hips for linking can require serious effort before you can successfully pull it off.

But once you learn to subconsciously do it, with enough practice, this will allow you to control your speed when cruising down the slopes more effectively.

Because the speed at which you ride across also depends on how well you can pull off those toeside and heelside turns with your snowboard.

For example, a snowboarder riding down in a straight line will ride much faster than someone turning across the mountains.

Hence, as soon as you reach this point, you can safely ride down many beginner slopes.

That’s one of the reasons to love snowboarding because, at the end of the day, the rewards are plenty if you just sit through the initial episodes of hardship.

Understand the Learning Curve

Monetary Difficulty – Will Snowboarding Break Your Bank?

Are you worried about the expenses and the investments you need to shred on slopes?

There are many reasons snowboarding can be an expensive sport, and most of it depends on the type of equipment you need to shred across the hills.

Here are some basics: you need a good snowboard, then boots and bindings that fit with the board. Fortunately, these can be rented out in almost all skiing resorts.

This can help save a few bucks while you are still learning and figuring out your preferred style in which you will invest your time and money later.

Another important thing is your gear: you need gloves, thermal underwear, socks, pants, and finally, a jacket.

Apart from these, as we mentioned, you also need a helmet and goggles to protect yourself from the extreme cold, wind, and other obstacles. So the list is long once you make that commitment.

Then, add in the expenses for lift tickets, traveling, lodging, and dining, then you can come up with a rough estimate of what it will take based on your needs and spending.

Once you become an expert snowboarder, you will be able to manage your expenses well, and at this point, you will likely have a clear picture of what you want to do when on the snow.

But up until that point, many new riders love to experiment and have fun with various boards, styles, and terrains — this usually doesn’t come cheap.          

Final Thoughts

Learning to snowboard is challenging, and there will be setbacks in the initial stages of learning. Learning to control the board and link turns is complex and will result in several falls.

But, once you have mastered the basics, your snowboarding journey becomes much easier.

This is the opinion of expert riders who have been through the process and have succeeded after countless trials and errors.

Practice and commitment are the way to quick and early success with your snowboarding lessons. All the best, and give it all you got!

Snowboarding Help

We are a team of friends who love to play board games and hang out together when not digging our heads deep into the world of snowboarding, tricks, techniques, and related safety measures.

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