Tag Archives: turns

How to Snowboard Fresh Powder: Skidded Turns

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My favorite part about snowboarding will always be riding fresh powder. The perfect amount of powder is around 7″ to 20″, because if you get anymore it becomes harder to get out of the powder when you fall down or hit a flat surface. Any less and it’s basically like hitting a groomed run.

Riding powder may seem simple after learning the 8 step of snowboarding, but the techniques you use are completely different. They actually make snowboards specifically designed for riding powder. It really is that amazing, imagine yourself riding on fluffy clouds and that’s the feeling you get riding powder. This doesn’t mean you need go out and buy another snowboard for hitting powder. You can hit powder with just about any snowboard, but you will have to lean back to prevent your front tip from sinking into the fresh snow.

When hitting groomed runs you typically keep you weight equally distributed between both feet. When you start hitting powder, you will distribute around 70% of your weight to your back foot. You can practice this feeling by strapping in at the bottom of the hill and then applying all your weight to your back leg. You will also be using a new type of turn when riding powder, the type of snowboard turn you will use to ride powder are skidded turns.

Skidded turns are used to slow your momentum. You basically make a toe turn and turn your board sideways, so that your board skids down the slope. Then you quickly slide your board into  a heel turn and turn your board sideways. Make these toe turns and heel turns to slow your momentum slightly, you should be able to do these skidded rather quickly. As you practice these, reduce the amount of time between board slides. When your hitting powder with skidded turns, keep your legs bouncy. Don’t try to carve into the snow like groomed runs, instead gently shift your feet and tip your board slightly on it’s edge. You want to glide more on powder and do less carving. It’s basically like going down a groomed run in slow motion, make all the motions subtle.

Never slow down in powder. You always want to keep your momentum up. Remember that when you fall in powder you simply fall on fluffy snow, not some hard compact ice. It’s okay to go faster on powder because you won’t hurt as bad when you fall. Some people even find it fun to pick up speed and throw themselves into the powder. Snowboarding in deep powder will greatly reduce your speed, so when you go down the steep part of the mountain you want to pick up momentum enough momemtum to get you across flat surfaces. If you don’t make across the flat surface. A good technique is to unstrap your boots from your board and lay your body flat on the snowboard. Then pretend like your surfing along the top of the powder. Push yourself across the flat surface. GO SLOW, if you pick up speed doing this technique you could send your board flying down the mountain.  As you approach a flat surface, lean back, and let your board simply straight glide across the flat surface. Remember to keep you knees light and take wider skidded turns on steep slopes filled with powder to slow your momentum. Once you get the hang of riding powder, you’ll want to make sure you get up early when a snow storm hits the mountain, so you can make first tracks in the snow.

The video below brought to you by the SnowProfessor will show you how to hit fresh powder with skidded turns!

Final Note: Check back here, where I’ll teach you more about snowboarding!

Snowboard Tricks: Front-side 180

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Doing 180’s is probably one of the best parts about snowboarding. It not only adds to your repertoire for snowboarding, but it also introduces you to a whole new field of snowboarding. After you master hitting jumps, you’ll probably want to add some 180’s, 360’s or even a grab to your jump.

Snowboarding tricks are extremely hard to learn, because you can’t just go up and practice them all day. When you fall trying to land a new trick, it can put an end to your whole day. The most dangerous part about snowboarding is trying to land big tricks. It may say seem easy to land these tricks when your watching the winter X-games on TV, but it’s a whole new ball park when you try to do it in person.

The 180 will add some style to your snowboarding and it’s extremely basic. It will also prepare you for bigger spins and learning harder tricks. The 180 is a continuation of my previous post of learning how to hit your first jump. A 180 is basically popping with your board off a jump, and doing a half rotation. The hard part about 180’s is that you’ll land switch. This means that you’ll be riding regular when you go off the jump, but land goofy. This is what makes doing tricks difficult. If you can’t ride switch, I recommend that you hold off on doing tricks for right now.

The best way to practice doing 180’s is to basically do step 6: garlands, but this time do a complete turn when you turn up the mountain. Ride down the mountain regular footed, turn up the mountain, and then do a complete turn. When you complete the turn you should be riding goofy. This will help you to know what’s is like to spin and then ride off in the opposite stance to what you’re comfortable with. After you feel comfortable doing this, ride down the mountain, and when you go to turn up mountain add a pop. This will help you to know what it feels like to pop and then ride away switch.

After you mastered the beginning steps, you can now practice doing front-side 180’s on your snowboard. Get on a flat surface of snow, strap in, and then popping  while spinning. You should be able to get a general idea of the motion you need to do when your moving with more momentum. Find a small jump and do some straight airs to get comfortable going off this particular jump. Once you feel comfortable going off the jump, you can then try doing a 180 off the jump. Start by getting low, turning your board onto it’s toe side edge, and popping with a 180. When you land keep your head downhill and focus on getting your board straight. Make sure you DO NOT land sideways on your edge or you will be seriously hurting. When you go do to any trick it’s important that you always fully commit, because if you bail out on a simple 180 you will do a 90 degree turn and end up hurting yourself.

The video below brought you by the SnowProfessor will demonstrate how to do a proper 180 and give you helpful tips so you don’t hurt yourself.

Final Note: Check back here, where I’ll teach you how to do more snowboarding tricks!

Step 8: Linking Turns

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After you master C-Turns, this next lesson will be our last. Linking turns is the last step in learning how to snowboard. I will be making more posts about by snowboarding trips and adventures, so don’t think this will be my very last post.

By linking turns you can now make your way all the way down the mountain. When you hear the term, “linking turns” you can simply think of it as back to back C-turns. You will make a C-turn on your front edge and then link it back into a C-turn on your heel edge. The hard part about linking turns is having the courage to go from one edge to the other edge within a short time frame. You know the steps and how to make these proper turns, so now it’s all up to you to fully commit in linking these turns.

The most important part about linking turns, is to slowly practice doing C-turns on both of your edges. Once you feel completely comfortable making C-turns on both edges, you can then  begin practicing going from one edge to the other edge. Every time you try to link turns, shorten the amount of time it takes to go from one edge to the other. Any easy way to practice linking turns is to get on a flat surface of snow and have a friend push you from behind. As you slowly move through the snow, apply pressure to your front toes and then quickly apply pressure back on to your heels. This will help you to know how much pressure to apply on your toes and heels when linking turns on steeper terrain.

Once you shorten the amount of time it takes you to link turns, you can look up the mountain and see that you’ve made an “S” in the snow. This will indicate that you have mastered all the fundamentals of snowboarding. It’s all down hill from here, keep practicing, and soon you will be bombing down the mountain like a professional.

The video below, brought to you by the SnowProfessor will demonstrate how to link turns and the common mistakes made in learning this final step.

Final note: Check back here, where I’ll tell you more about my snowboarding adventures and teach how to do 180’s and hit jumps.

Step 7: C-Turns

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After you master Garlands, the next snowboarding lesson I will be teaching you are C-turns. If you remember doing J-turns earlier, then you have made it to the more advanced turns for snowboarding. If you’re one of those people who skipped ahead, go back, and start from step 1. If you skip ahead in snowboarding you’ll probably end up hurting yourself by using improper techniques.

The most important part about C-turns and any other kind of turn is proper balance. You will need to have an athletic stance when doing all of your turns for snowboarding. You will also need to know how much pressure to put on your toes and heels. An athletic stance means having your head turned down hill, shoulders parallel with your snowboard, body weight center with the board, knees bent, and your feet ready to shred.

When doing a C-turn on your toe side, you will bend your knees and then apply pressure to your toes on your front foot first. Then you apply pressure to your toes on your back foot. When applying pressure, you need to make sure that you apply gradual pressure because if you apply too much then you will fall. You can practice applying pressure to your toes by leaning against a fence or a friend and tilting your board on its edge by applying pressure to both feet.

When doing a C-turn on your  heel side edge, you will do the same process of using an athletic stance and bending your knees. Except this time you will apply pressure to your heel on your back foot first, then you will apply pressure to the heel of your front foot, and then gently push your front knee out in the direction you want to go.

The video below brought to you by the SnowProfessor will demonstrate how to do a C-turn properly with the correct stance.

Final Note: Check back here, where I’ll teach you how to link turns.

Step 6: Garlands

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After you master starting, stopping, and getting up. The next snowboarding lesson I will be teaching you are garlands. You may be asking yourself, what the heck are garlands? Garlands are basically simple turns that will take you take down the mountain a short distance and then turn you back up the mountain. Garlands are very simple, so they can easily be forgotten by snowboard instructors. It’s important to practice garlands first, so you know how to slide down the mountain with full control. They also help you learn how much pressure you need to put on your toes and on your heels while turning.

Your snowboard is designed to twist from side to side. This twisting allows your board to turn in different directions by applying pressure with your feet. Sometimes you’ll apply more pressure to one foot and less pressure on the other foot. Get on a flat surface of snow and practice twisting your snowboard. Apply pressure to one foot and pull up on the other foot. This will help you get the feel of how your board will twist when you apply pressure.

Start by doing a “traverse”, where we slide across the mountain. Slide across the mountain a short distance on your heel side edge. Apply gradual pressure to your front foot ONLY and you should feel your board start to turn down hill. Switch pressure back onto your heels and you should turn back into a traverse. Practice applying pressure to your front foot and sliding down the hill, then dig your heel edge in, and you’ll go back up hill. You’re basically making diagonal  waves in the snow when doing garlands. Practice this same technique on your toe side edge until you feel comfortable with both edges.

The video below brought to you by the SnowProfessor will show you a great demonstration of doing garlands if you’re confused!

Final Note: Check back here, where I’ll teach you how to do C-Turns!