Everyone knows about skiing and snowboarding, and many millions have chosen to take up one of these extreme sports. Some aficionados even learn both so that they can have the choice on any given day. But what if you fancy doing something different, so that you can stand out from the crowd?

Well monoskiing is a cool alternative that relatively few people have considered. Originally invented in the late 1950’s it was eventually overshadowed a decade or so later by snowboarding which offered skateboarders the opportunity to break off their wheels, don some bright pants and carve up those skiers. Snowboarding has obviously grown into a well regarded sport in its own right. However, more recently people have been looking at alternatives for the next big thing. Here marks the reheralding of the monoski, fully redeveloped for the 21st century.

We chatted to Nick Clemons from Monoskis UK to find out a bit more.

When did you first get into Monoskiing and what was it that drew you to it?

It was in Chamonix, France in 1993. I already skied but saw a few people effortlessly monoskiing and thought I just had to give it a go. It proved to be relatively easy to get to a decent level quite quickly and as you cannot pull your feet apart you can’t really fail to look cool whilst doing it.

What are the main differences between Monoskiing and Snowboarding? (other than the fact that you have poles!)

On a monoski you have your feet together and facing forwards as opposed to a snowboard where they are some distance apart and at an angle. This has the advantage of allowing your feet to work together much more easily to do the same thing. As a result it is very easy to turn on a monoski and your ski poles help you to switch your balance easier when turning at faster speeds.

Is it easy to learn to Monoski? Where can you get lessons?

The first hour on a monoski feels a little strange, particularly if you are used to skiing as you obviously can’t move your feet apart. However, the improvement curve is much greater on a monoski than on skis or a snowboard. Jean-Phillipe Thevenod of Duret Monoskis says that he can get new monoskiers to tackle red runs within a couple of hours.

We are currently in the process of contacting ski centres in the UK with a view to hiring monoskis or even giving lessons. You can also get in touch with monoskis.co.uk to enquire as to where you can try it out when you are on holiday. The French resorts are the most likely place to be able to have a go.

Some may argue that it looks pretty difficult to control your speed – what’s your take on that?

It’s nowhere near as easy to get out of control on a monoski as it is with skis. Skiers, when they are uncomfortable with the speed they are going tend to put their skis further apart in order to compensate for going too fast. This only makes it more likely that they’ll stay on their feet whilst picking up speed for longer instead of falling over; which if you feel you’re going too fast is what you really should be doing. With monoskiing you can’t put your feet apart and therefore if you feel you’re going too fast people just fall over way before they get out of control.

 

What about the equipment, is it expensive? And where can you buy Monoskis from?

The equipment is comparable with a pair of skis or a snowboard. Obviously you can spend a lot of money on a monoski but for a beginner there is no need to do so. We sell a Duret monoski pack at monoskis.co.uk for less than £400 that includes the ski, bindings, fixing plates and a monoski strap for safety. There are lots of different models available depending on what you want a monoski for. All ours are made in France and are excellent quality.

Can you use your regular ski boots for Monoskiing?

Yes the bindings on a monoski are designed to fit ski boots. When you buy a ski we provide instructions as to how to measure certain dimensions of your ski boots to ensure the bindings are set exactly right for you. You can’t however wear snowboarding boots on a monoski.

Are there particular resorts that Monoskiers head for? And where is the best place to meet other Monoskiers?

Many of the large French resorts are the best places to try monoskiing. The Portes de Soleil (Morzine, Avoriaz etc), Tignes, Val D’Isere, Trois Vallees (Meribel, Val Thorens etc) are usually where you’ll find a few monoskiers. If you want to try it and meet other monoskiers there is an annual monoski festival, The Mondial de Monoski, which this season is being held in Tignes between 28th February and 7th March 2015. On our website you can see some of the videos of this event to get an idea of what it’s like.

Finally, what would you say to someone who is thinking about giving it a go for the first time?

The first hour will feel weird when you can’t move your legs apart. After that you’ll be hooked when you realize how good you look with relatively little effort. I’m yet to meet a skier or boarder who doesn’t like to look good on the slopes!

Snowboard pants are a key part in dressing properly for a day out on the slopes, whether that be women’s snowboard pants or men’s snowboard pants. You will typically be wearing your snowboard pants over a pair of long johns or thermal underwear, to help keep you not only warm but also dry as you slide down mountains and unfortunately though inevitably, have your backside make contact with the snow.

Make Sure That the Materials Used are Both Breathable and Waterproof

Whether you are in the market for women’s snowboard pants or men’s snowboard pants, you want to make sure that whatever you are wearing will be favorable in the extreme conditions of moisture and cold that you are likely to encounter while snowboarding.

First and foremost, you want the materials to be waterproof. This should be obvious, but it is still important to stress the benefits of waterproof snowboarding pants. Invariably, while snowboarding, you will come into contact with the snow itself, particularly after a tough fall. You want to make sure that such falls will not leave you soaked to the skin and vulnerable to the cold and sickness that come along with it. You will need pants that will prevent moisture from leaking through to your inner layers and will wick away moisture in order to dry quickly.

Along with the materials being waterproof, you also need them to be breathable. Apart from the breathability of the material helping to keep out snow-related moisture, it will also help with clearing out your own sweat. It is ironic, perhaps, to think that you will be sweating under these cold conditions, but with the constant moving, some sweat is inevitable.

While you don’t immediately notice how much perspiration might be on you while you are moving and the wind is in your face, you will notice it once you have stopped moving and the harsh winds make every bead of perspiration feel like a little icicle. Consider finding snowboarding pants with zipper vents or some sort of ventilation built in so that your body will remain continuously aired out throughout the day, regardless of conditions.

Fit

The fit of your pants will not vary greatly regardless of if you are in the market for women’s snowboard pants or men’s snowboard pants. You want something that will minimize the ability for snow to get in, as well as any cold or moisture. While you will have some sort of inner layer to protect your immediate skin from becoming wet, if your snowboard pants are slightly loose, you still get some snow or moisture in through the waist or hem, leaving your inner layers vulnerable to moisture that will eventually seep through to your skin. Not only will this be uncomfortable as the day goes on, but it also will make you more prone to colds and other sicknesses.

When shopping for snowboard pants, make sure that you have a fairly loose fit that will not restrict movement in any way. However, do not ignore the recommendation of a high waistline in order to keep out immediate moisture and snow. Also, you want to make sure that the hemline is long and falls over your boots in order to keep snow out of your boots and make sure that your feet stay nice and dry.

 

Women’s and Men’s Snowboard Pants

 

Endurance

Your snowboarding gear will take far more of a beating than possibly any other clothing you will ever buy, and snowboarding pants are no exception. Keep in mind that you don’t want to be shopping for a new pair of snowboarding pants every other week, and you want to invest in a couple of good pairs that can last you at least a season or two, if not more. The lifetime of these snowboarding pants needs to be long, and aside from a tough, waterproof and breathable material, you will also want a pair of pants with solid stitching. The pants should be double or triple stitched with reinforced materials near the seams in order to secure a longer life span.

Style

Once you have found the basics of what you need in a snowboard pant, feel free to explore the differently styles available to you. Here, is where the difference between men’s snowboarding pants and women’s snowboarding pants can become really prevalent. There is a whole world of snowboarding pants in different colors and patterns available to you, all equally reliable.

Just because something is sturdy does not mean that you have to stick to a basic color or design. Snowboarding is fun, so have fun with the outfits you will be wearing while snowboarding. Go for a bright color, interesting print, or individual design. If you are going to learn all of those awesome moves, you might as well look good while you do them, right?

Don’t Overlook Customer Reviews When Buying Women’s Snowboard Pants or Men’s Snowboard Pants!

Customer reviews are probably the best resource available to you when shopping for women’s snowboard pants and other snowboarding gear. With the internet, you now have literally thousands of customers giving feedback on which companies make the best gear, and how each one can benefit your experience.

The greatest benefit of these customer reviews is that, unlike advertisements, most of these customers are simply giving feedback on their own experience with each particular brand of snowboarding pants, without trying to sell something to you.

These reviews are often very reliable because of their lack of product pushing. While a particular snowboarding gear company might tell you that their snowboarding pants are the best because of the lightweight material that they are made with, a customer review could challenge that claim by letting you know if that lightweight material did a poor job of keeping out moisture.

So if you are interested in a brand of mens snowboard pants or womens snowboard pants because the style looks appealing or because the company insists that they are durable and comfortable, don’t forget to take the time to look up consumer reviews. These consumer reviews might be what saves you from spending a lot of money on a pair of snowboarding pants that is not totally waterproof, or is made of an itchy material.

If you want more women’s and men’s snowboard pants reviews, head over to our home page or navigate using the links to the right.

 

We started this site to ensure countrywide snowboarding education accessibility. There comes a point, however, where practicing turns in your backyard is no longer enough. After a few months of learning the basics at your local sledding hill, you’re going to want to tackle something a bit larger. When that time comes, you’ll likely begin to research your nearest ski resort. This experience can be daunting, intimidating, and a drain on your wallet. However, we have the resources you need to get the most out of your time on the mountain.

Let’s start with choosing a resort. If you’re new to the sport, you’re going to want a mountain with an abundance of beginner-friendly amenities. Think: rope tows, magic carpets, and a bunny hill with an actual chairlift. We’re based in Colorado, so we’ll use our state’s resorts as examples. For other Coloradans, you may want to check out Crested Butte, the majority of whose terrain is classified as either beginner or intermediate. This mountain has several long, gradual runs for you to practice your turning without threatening to bump into other boarders. These types of inclusions are essential for beginner boarders.

Next, let’s move to lesson availability. Though you’ve likely gleaned a lot of important information from this site, you might want an expert’s support for your first time on the mountain. Every Colorado resort has some type of lesson offering, but see which has the service you want. If you’re on the lookout for private lessons, steer clear of large resorts, like Breckenridge and Vail, which can fetch up to $250 for a one-hour private lesson. If you’re okay with a group lesson, you’ll have more choice within your budget, but you won’t get the one-on-one attention you may be looking for.

Finally, the factor you’ve been dreading: lift ticket rates. Lift ticket prices can be incredibly prohibitive to some beginner boarders, as single-day passes can go for as much as $140 at some of Colorado’s largest resorts. However, using a lift ticket comparison tool is the best way to see what your money can buy. If you’re most worried about spending money on a lift ticket, we suggest starting with a lift ticket price comparison to narrow down your available resorts. From there, research which is the most beginner-friendly.

Once you’ve considered the three above factors, you’re nearly ready to hit the slopes. If you’ve been practicing at home, you likely already have your own equipment. If you don’t, try using a site like Colorado Ski Authority to see which rental shops in your area have the best rates. After securing your equipment, your ticket, and your lesson time, you’ll be ready to tackle the bunny hill. Don’t get discouraged if you can’t make much progress in the first day; snowboarding is a difficult sport, but with time and effort, you’ll eventually see the results you want.http://coloradoskiauthority.com/travel/ski-rentals/#.W1oEctJKg2w

 

Though this site is devoted to helping beginners get their snow legs, snowboarders of all ability levels can stand to improve their form. Snowboarding can be incredibly frustrating, and nothing feels worse than the idea that you’ve progressed as much as possible. The joy of snowboarding comes from mastering and perfecting new techniques, and if you can’t do that, you’re likely to grow angry with the entire sport. Luckily, there are a few strategies for boarders to improve their technique without spending hours on the mountain. Here are our four steps to improving your technique, regardless of ability.

 

  1. Get in shape. Being in shape will make a substantial difference in your performance. Focus on keeping your strength to weight ratio high (I.e. not bulking up), increasing your core strength, exercising your legs, and improving flexibility. Plus, exercise and training will help to prevent muscle and ligament injuries when you do eventually get out on the snow.

 

  1. Buy or rent the right gear. When purchasing equipment, do as much research as possible before pulling out your credit card. Think carefully about the areas of your riding you’d like to improve. If you don’t feel very stable while riding, opt for a wider board. If you want to focus on park tricks and techniques, look for softer, lighter, park-focused equipment. There’s a type of board, binding, and boot for every style of snowboarding, and figuring out which works best for you is a great way to up your game.

 

  1. Record yourself. The next time you go out boarding with friends, ask somebody to record you heading down a slope for a few minutes. Then, use this footage to assess your riding style. Compare your tape to a recording of your favorite snowboarder, then see what they do differently. Once you begin to isolate the parts of your riding you’d like to improve, you’ll target better learning and improvement strategies.

 

  1. Take a lesson. Nobody is too good for a lesson… and we mean Even Olympic snowboarders have daily coaching. If you’re truly stick in a snowboarding rut, sign up for a private or group lesson at your local resort. Prior to the lesson, think through everything you want to improve, then clearly communicate this to your instructor. You’ll be surprised how much of a difference one hour of instruction can make.

Ski slopes can be scary places for the inexperienced, and learning to snowboard on your own require a lot of individual research. Our mission is to provide a free, online snowboarding education, but we understand that online tools lack the personal touch of in-person lessons and discussions. To help you on your snowboarding journey, we’ve answered a few common, non-technical questions about learning to ride.

 

Will it hurt?

To be honest—it might. Common beginner injuries include bruised tailbones and sprained or broken risks. However, these are fairly uncommon, and serious injuries are rare because you’ll be going pretty slow. You can expect to be sore after the first day, and your butt and knees might hurt from falling.

 

What’s the hardest thing to learn?

Standing up on the slop with both feet strapped in will be one of the hardest things you experience. The board will continue to slide away from you unless you have the strength to hold it still. It gets easier once you get the technique down, but it can be very difficult at first. Learning to balance on your board, not leaning back, and understanding how to slow and stop can also be pretty difficult for beginners.

 

Do I really need a helmet?

Yes. Don’t even think about not wearing one.

 

Why are my gloves always wet?

Learning to snowboard means having a lot of hand-to-snow contact when you’re getting up or falling down. Your gloves might not be waterproof. If you’re going to invest in anything as a beginner snowboarder, go with good-quality, waterproof gloves. On your first day, bring backup gloves.

 

What happens if I get hurt?

If you’re just starting out, you’ll likely be on a beginner trail or on the kiddie slope. This means that there will be people all around. If you are in serious trouble, flag someone down and ask them to contact ski patrol. If for some reason there are no other people on the trail, use a walkie talkie to radio into the resort’s base. If you’re out on your own, be sure to let a friend or family member know where you’ll be.

 

Snowboarding is a fun and fast-paced sport for people of all ages. However, if you’re just starting out, you should not expect to rip through the powder immediately. The process takes a lot of time and patience to learn. It begins with proper training, an open mind, and a willingness to learn. Avoid these rookie mistakes to both protect yourself and avoid disillusionment.

 

  1. Not being in shape. Though it may not appear to be physically strenuous, snowboarding is a physically demanding sport. For inexperienced people, it may simply look like you’re gliding down a slope without effort. In reality, you end up using almost every muscle group to shift your weight, turn, stop, balance, and gain speed. You should have a level of strength and endurance before beginning your snowboarding journey.

 

  1. Not taking your time. You should never rush into snowboarding. It takes time and patience to perfect, and you need to give it the time and attention it needs. Keep in mind that once you hit a breakthrough point, your skills will improve very quickly.

 

  1. Worrying about looking like a beginner. Don’t try to fake it—everyone remembers their first few times on a snowboard. Don’t worry about looking dumb and focus on what you’re trying to learn.

 

  1. Wearing the wrong clothing. With winter sports, it is crucial that you wear the correct clothing. Start with a base layer to keep you dry, add a mid-layer to keep you warm, and include an outer layer to break the wind and prevent moisture from entering. Always be prepared for cold, severe weather.

 

  1. Getting too frustrated. Snowboarding isn’t too difficult, but it also isn’t easy. It takes a lot of perseverance to carry on through the first few days of learning to ride. You’re going to fall a lot, and you’re going to look pretty dumb at points. Try not to get frustrated; everyone on the mountain has been exactly where you are.

 

You’ve mastered the basic parts of the snowboard, and now you want to better understand how the shape affects the way you shred. You should understand three vocabulary terms: camber, rocker, and flat.

Camber is the traditional profile for skis and snowboards. This is when the board has a slight upward curve in the middle with contact points (where the unweighted board contacts the snow) close to the ends. This type of profile requires more effort to turn but is excellent in nearly any snow condition. The rider’s weight puts pressure on the entire board, resulting in an increased edgehold. This is a great choice for racers and park riders.

Traditional Camber boards are the best for carving and jumping; the distribution of weight allows the edge to hold better than most shapes, allowing for precision and a decreased chance of slipping or catching an edge.

Rocker, also known as Reverse Camber, is exactly what it sounds like; Camber turned upside down. Rather than touching the snow at the tip and tail, an unweighted board will touch the snow at the center.  Rocker boards are excellent for soft snow and have easy turn initiation with a decreased chance of catching an edge. This is a popular profile for places known for powdery conditions, such as Colorado or British Columbia. Though jumps are harder to land, you’ll be able to float over ungroomed trails.

Flat, again, is exactly what you would expect—no Camber or Rocker. If you lay the board on a table with no weight, there will not be any space between the base and the table. This type of profile provides a better edge grip than rocker and a better maneuverability than camber.

Your board’s profile will affect the way you ride. If you’re confused about your style and which profile is best for you, visit your local board shop or sporting retailer. There, a professional should be able to assess your style and make accurate recommendations based on what you may need.

Learning to turn is one of the most important steps in your DIY snowboard education. Once you master a turn, you’ll be well on your way to tackling bigger slopes, different conditions, and varying speeds. There are two types of turns—toe side and heel side.

When initiating a toe side turn, you will start by facing downhill. When you’re ready to start the turn, press down on your front foot. As the board starts to point down, rotate your head, shoulders, and hips until your front hand is point to the other side of the slope and you’re on a toe side edge (body facing up the mountain). That’s it!

A heel side turn is similar. Start with your body facing up the hill, put your weight on your front foot, and let your board begin to point straight down the slope. Press your heels into the snow to slide around and face down the mountain. Turning is a simple motion, but it must be a flowing movement. Never force your turns and allow the board to do its thing.

When learning to turn, you’ll likely encounter one of several common mistakes. The first (and most common!) is leaning too far back. Turning allows you to go faster, and leaning back is a natural response to an uncomfortable speed. Unfortunately, leaning back makes turning more difficult; you always want your weight forward, allowing the board to pivot around your front foot.

Similarly, many self-taught snowboarders encounter something called Counter Rotating. This occurs when the body is out of alignment during the turn. To combat this issue, keep everything—your head, shoulders, hips, knees, and board—aligned as much as possible to facilitate a swift, flowing movement.

 

 

Learning to ride is a lot like learning to read—you can start a book if you don’t know the alphabet, and you can’t snowboard if you don’t know how it works. Skiing and snowboarding have their own unique language, and understanding key vocabulary is essential to learning the basics. In this post, we’re going to review every part of the snowboard so you can begin to expand your slope-side knowledge.

Every snowboard has a nose and a tail. These are sometimes referred to as the tip and the tail. The nose, or tip, if at the front when you are riding in a normal riding position—either regular or goofy. The tail is behind your back foot. The bottom of your board, also known as the base, is the part of the equipment that is in frequent contact with the snow. This part is made of a porous material called polyethylene. Unlike surfing, this is the part of the board you will wax; the polyethylene soaks of wax when heated, which will allow you to more easily glide over the snow. It is essential to wax your board regularly to ensure maximum speed and efficiency.

The top of your board, known as the topsheet, is where your bindings attach. This is often the part of the board to display graphics and designs. The bindings are what keep your feet attached to the snowboard while in motion. The bottom of each binding is referred to as the baseplate; this will often have a disk to allow you to change the angle of the bindings. Bindings come in several styles, but most have ankle and toe straps to secure the boot to the board.

We’re almost done—hanging in there?

Each snowboard has a metal edge that travels around the base of the board. This allows you to dig into the snow while making turns. The edge under your toes is called the toe edge, and the edge under your heels is called the heel edge. The edge, topboard, and base combine to make a shape. The hourglass shape you see is called the sidecut—a design element which allows you to turn. Without a sidecut, you will not be able to turn.

Those are the basic board parts. Take a few minutes, let that sink in, then continue to our profile guide for understanding how the base of the board sits on the snow.

 

If you’ve been around snowboarders, skiers, or resorts, you’ve likely picked up on the presence of some weird terminology. A lot of ski and snowboard lingo refers to conditions and the mountain itself—you’ll have “bluebird days” and “whiteouts,” experience “crud” and “corduroy,” and—most likely—have yourself a “yard sale” every once in a while. However, there are some words that pertain to the riders themselves.

 

In order to more easily ride your board, it is important for beginners to understand which stance they most comfortably utilize: “goofy” or “regular.” Once you’ve determined this, you can more easily tailor your learning, lessons, and rides to your specific style.

 

To “ride goofy” means that you lead with your right foot. To “ride regular” means you lead with your left. The most important goal of a boarder’s stance is to place the dominant foot at the back of the board in order to provide more precision in movement. This dominant foot will do most of the steering while the less dominant foot provides direction and balance at the board’s front. The only difference between these designations is the position of the foot—neither will provide any added benefit to the boarder.

 

More people ride regular than goofy, but, with practice, it is possible to ride both goofy and regular with equal strength. This can be a great skill when encountering difficult conditions, such as moguls, glades, or tight trails. If you are just starting out and having a difficult time moving your board forward, try switching positions—you may be using the wrong stance.