Improve your snowboarding technique with expert advice
Master the slopes and off-piste with confidence. Discover all our expert advice to perfect your snowboard technique.
In this era of snowboarding, where freeride and freestyle have become popular activities, it is essential to constantly improve your snowboarding technique to fully enjoy the mountain experience. Whether you are a beginner or already have some experience, this guide will provide you with expert snowboard technical advice to help you perfect your snowboarding practice. Explore tips and techniques that will help you become a more confident and knowledgeable rider, even at the snowboarding level for experts.
Our expert advice
To improve your snowboarding technique, discover all our expert advice. Improve your skills and become a real pro like Pierre Vaultier, Anna Gasser or Shaun White.
Choice of suitable equipment
The first key element to improve your snowboarding practice, as in any sport, is to choose the appropriate material. Depending on your riding style, whether freeride, freestyle or splitboard, selecting the right snowboard skis is crucial. We will guide you in choosing the snowboards that best suit your riding style, whether for advanced level snowboarding or for riders looking to perfect themselves. A quality board will make all the difference! Here are some general recommendations to help you choose the right snowboard for your practice:
- Freestyle: if you like jumps, tricks, rotations and descents in the snowpark, opt for a freestyle snowboard. These boards are shorter, lighter and more flexible, making them ideal for the maneuverability required in freestyle;
- Freeride: if you prefer off-piste descents, powder and mountain exploration, a freeride snowboard is what you need. These boards are generally longer, wider, and offer better flotation in deep snow;
- All-Mountain: If you enjoy a little bit of everything from groomed to off-piste to snowpark tricks, an all-mountain board is versatile and will allow you to have fun in various conditions.
- Beginner: if you are new to snowboarding, opt for a flexible and tolerant board that facilitates learning. An all-mountain board with a soft flex is a good choice;
- Intermediate: intermediate snowboarders can consider more versatile boards, adapted to their preferred style of practice;
- Expert: expert snowboarders can opt for stiffer and more technical boards, designed for high performance in their specific discipline.
Learn the basics
Before venturing into more technical tricks or mountain descents, it is essential to master the basics of snowboarding. We will review essential techniques such as foot positioning, balance, posture and basic turns, all to help you progress towards advanced snowboarding techniques.
The first step is to determine whether you are "regular" (left foot forward) or "goofy" (right foot forward). This position is similar to the posture you would adopt to slide on a slippery surface in socks. For many people, the strongest foot is in the back, but it depends on your personal comfort.
- Regular : left foot forward
- Goofy : right foot forward
Once you have determined your position, adjust your bindings so that your front foot is perpendicular to the board and your back foot is slightly inclined. This will give you better stability and control.
To gain balance in snowboarding, first avoid locking your knees, as this will make you less responsive. Keep the knees slightly bent to absorb the irregularities of the terrain and for better stability. Then distribute the weight evenly between your two feet and avoid leaning too far forward or backward. Finally, always keep your eyes focused on where you want to go, this will help you maintain your balance and anticipate movements.
Your shoulders should remain perpendicular to the track so as not to unbalance your body. Keep your arms relaxed in front of you, slightly bent at the elbows. Finally, the back should remain straight and the hips should be aligned with the snowboard.
The basic turns
- Traverse Turn (Traversing): To make a traverse turn, first bend your knees and slightly tilt your weight on the front foot. To turn right, for example, lightly press the toe edge of your front foot while maintaining light pressure on the heel of your back foot. This will rotate your board to the right. To return in a straight line, bring your weight back to the center;
- The frontside turn: the frontside turns are made by turning towards your front foot (towards the slope);
- The backside turn: the backside turns are made by turning towards your back foot (opposite the slope).
Progress in freestyle and freeride
Depending on your preferences, we will explore specific tips to improve your practice in each discipline. Whether you want to explore the off-piste slopes or challenge the snowparks, we will give you valuable recommendations to progress and prepare you for more advanced snowboarding lessons.
Freestyle is one of the most exciting disciplines of snowboarding, focused on jumps, tricks and creativity. To progress in freestyle, start by strengthening your basic snowboarding skills, including foot positioning, balance and posture. Then find a snowpark suitable for your level, where you can get acquainted with the modules such as jumps, rails and boxes. In most of the stations' snowparks, some lines have levels (S, M, L). Start with simple tricks like ollies and grabs, then gradually evolve into rotations and flips. Regular practice is key to improving your freestyle skills, but remember to always prioritize safety and wear a helmet when trying more advanced tricks.
Freeride, meanwhile, takes you off the marked slopes in search of fresh snow and powder fields where you can make your own track. To progress freeride, develop your cornering technique and control on varied terrain. Learn to read the mountain to identify safe areas of descent and potential hazards such as avalanches. Equip yourself with safety equipment, including a shovel, probe and DVA (Avalanche Victim Search Device), and take mountain safety courses. Freeriding requires a thorough understanding of snow conditions and great caution, so feel free to be guided by local experts or trained accordingly to fully enjoy this off-piste experience.
Physical training and preparation
Fitness plays a crucial role in your snowboarding progress. We will advise you on specific exercises to perform to strengthen your body and improve your endurance, thus preparing you for a more intensive snowboard training.
- Leg strengthening: while squats are excellent exercises to strengthen the quadriceps, hamstrings and glutes, lunges strengthen muscles and improve balance;
- Core strengthening: the board is an effective exercise to strengthen the abdominal muscles and lower back. Russian twists target obliques and enhance trunk stability;
- Upper body strengthening: push-ups and pull-ups strengthen arms, shoulders, back muscles and improve board control and transitions;
- Endurance: running, cycling, swimming, work your endurance to simulate intense efforts in snowboarding.
Snowboard for experts
Expert snowboarders are those who constantly push the limits of their sport. They seek to master the most difficult conditions and perform impressive maneuvers. If you’re ready to take it to the next level, here are some tips for becoming an expert snowboarder:
- Training is essential: to reach the expert level, it is crucial to train regularly. This means spending time on the slopes, but also working on your physical condition to develop the necessary strength and endurance.
- Master the powder: the powder run is one of the most exhilarating challenges of snowboarding. To excel in this discipline, work on your flotation technique using fluid movements and adjusting your weight accordingly.
- Advanced freestyle: expert snowboarders can perform spectacular jumps, rotations and complex tricks. Train in a snowpark to hone these skills, but don’t forget to wear a hard hat
- Learn from professionals: watch professional snowboard videos to observe their technique and style. You can learn a lot by observing the experts in action.
In summary, whether you are passionate about freeride, freestyle or all-mountain, there are always ways to perfect your snowboarding technique. By following the expert snowboarding tips shared in this article and engaging in regular snowboarding improvement, you can progress and enjoy even more of your mountain adventures. So equip yourself with the right equipment, practice regularly and remember to always keep your passion for snowboarding intact.