How to choose a good snowboard for skiing?
Snowboarding is a dynamic and extreme sport. If you want to master it or improve skills, it is important to buy quality and, importantly, the right equipment. Find out all the main features of the selection.
What are snowboards?
Snowboards differ in purpose and riding style on the board. There are such types:
- Models for carving. Free-karv assumes descents on the rolling, but rather steep slopes with sharp turns. The main goal is to develop maximum speed, therefore the board should provide excellent sliding, which is achieved due to increased stiffness and length.
- Freestyle snowboards. This style of riding includes various tricks, riding on soft slopes and ramps. The board is rather soft and shorter than the previous model, it has the shape of a twin-tip, that is, the same ends on both sides. After falling after the jump, the athlete can stand up and continue to move in any direction.
- Options for freeride.This style implies descents from unprepared, usually snow-covered and relief slopes. Good roadability is provided by increased length and width, as well as irregular geometry: the nose is usually wider and longer than the rear, which allows you to track.
- Universal models are combined into the All-mountain category and are suitable for any surfaces and different styles of skiing: descents along snow-covered slopes, skiing on prepared slopes, and simple tricks. The length of the average, as well as stiffness. The center is narrowed, the front part may be slightly longer than the tail. It is on this option is to stop the newcomer: ride comfortably and relatively safely.
The main parameters of the choice: size and stiffness
Important is the size of the board, which includes two main parameters: length and width. The length depends on the growth of the snowboarder and the type of board. So, to calculate this indicator for the universal model, 15 cm should be subtracted from height. The length of the snowboard for freeride is 10 centimeters shorter than the height of the athlete, freestyle options are 8-10 cm less. But if you have a large physique and a significant weight, it is recommended to add 5 cm to the calculated index. If the body weight is less than the standard, subtract 3-5 cm.When buying, you can study the manufacturer’s size chart or consult the seller.
No less important is the width. It depends on the size of the foot and determines the stability and maneuverability of the board. So, a narrow snowboard perfectly slides and behaves better on turns. The wide board is more stable, but does not fit into sharp turns and is less maneuverable. So it is advisable to choose the option that corresponds to your feet in shoes: they should not go beyond more than 1-1.5 centimeters.
The width is divided into several categories of snowboards:
- Narrow or narrow have a width of not more than 25 centimeters in the waist, that is, the narrowest central part.
- Standard, that is, regular. The width of the center is from 25 cm to 26.
- Middle boards (mid-wide) have a width of 26-27 cm.
- Wide models or wide are characterized by a maximum waist width - over 27 cm. Such options are suitable for owners of foot size from the 44th and more.
Estimating the main characteristics, it is worth paying special attention to rigidity as it influences comfort and speed when driving. The softer the board, the better it smoothes the surface relief, providing comfortable landings. But you can not reach maximum speed.Hard snowboards as fast as possible, but not suitable for beginners, as they behave worse on uneven slopes.
Matters and weight. So, the heavy board will automatically reduce the speed of movements and descents, in addition, it will be uncomfortable and difficult to carry. But light snowboard should not be: it will reduce its stability and will certainly reduce the strength. Find an average option, and to determine the optimal mass, try to lift the selected model with one hand on the nose: if it succeeds without much effort, then the weight is suitable.
Design features, materials and coatings
If you do not know how to choose the right snowboard for skiing, then pay attention to the design. There are three varieties:
- Cap (cap). In the center is the core, covered with a monolithic platform from above, and on the other hand, with a sliding base. Such models are easier to repair and maintain, but on a steep slope after hitting the board can delaminate.
- Sandwich. The upper part, the core and the sliding platform are connected and pressed under pressure, which creates a single three-layer structure. Such snowboards are more expensive and more durable, but after a breakdown they require expensive, complex repairs.
- Combined models combine the features of cap and sandwich variations.The ends are pressed, and the central part is assembled, which reduces the mass, but increases the strength.
Pay attention to the materials from which the snowboard is made. So, the cores are made of wood, wood and foam, as well as composite materials. Wood detail minimizes vibrations and ensures gentle cushioning, but may suffer when exposed to moisture. Wood with added foam has a low weight and affordable cost, but vibrations and shocks dampen it as less elastic. Also, various combinations with the addition of wood, aluminum, carbon. Boards of such materials can be both tough and quite elastic, and the price depends on the components of the composition.
The sliding surface can be made from polyethylene (sintered or extruded), graphite, or combinations of two materials. Graphite provides excellent slip, but due to softness and abrasion wears out pretty quickly. Polyethylene does not require maintenance, facilitates the board and is not subject to wear and environmental influences.
The deflection affects the ride and is divided into the following types:
- Classic is a raised central part.Models are suitable for professionals and "advanced" amateurs.
- Banana or rocker. The center is on a support, the edges are raised from the ground. A good option for a beginner, and it can be used for different styles.
- Zero deflection is distinguished by a flat center and slightly elevated nose and end. A beginner will be able to skate, but the freestyle option will do as well.
- Combined deflections can take various forms.
The piping is a metal strip on the front edge of the board that provides entry into turns. Kanty is straight and wavy.
Where to get a snowboard and which manufacturer to choose?
So, where to get a snowboard? It all depends on how and where you plan to ride. For example, if you go on vacation to the mountains and want to try yourself on the slopes, but do not plan to constantly engage in this winter sport, then your option is to rent equipment. You will get impressions, but save yourself from having to carry everything you need with you.
An athlete who decides to go in for snowbirding is better to buy a quality board in a specialty store. At the seller at purchase demand the documentation confirming authenticity and quality of the goods.Also, immediately learn about the warranty provided and the possibility of purchasing additional components and parts for breakdown cases.
If you want to save money, you can buy a used board, but it should be in good condition. And this is possible, because a person selling a snowboard could simply give up a hobby after a short time or get an improved model. Carefully inspect the board to make sure that it does not have cracks and chips.
Take into account when purchasing, what company has made a snowboard. It is better to trust proven and well-earned manufacturers, responsible for product quality. Among the popular brands are Never Summer, Lib Tech, Burton, Santa Cruz, Factory, Rossignol.
Choosing a good snowboard, do not forget to pick up to it the other components: boots, bindings, a helmet and goggles. And good luck to you!
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