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Old 28.02.2008, 16:53
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Skiing v's Snowboarding

Bored today so I thought I’d write this, boarding or skiing. Its my opinion there is no science in it. There are also some instructors on the forums who I think will have a more informed opinion than me.


Firstly if you are old and likely to break, go skiing, you will fall over less whilst learning and therefore have less of a chance of damaging bits of yourself.

Which ever one you pick the equipment will be rented for the first week. It will probably be uncomfortable and cause bruises and cuts. Snowboard boots will be much more comfortable than ski boots. When you have decided which one you will continue with think about getting all the kit; at least the boots and make sure they are comfortable.

Skiing is more natural than boarding, more like walking as you tend to face forwards.. On a board you face towards and then away from the mountain and it takes a bit of “bottle” to be able to make yourself perform these unnatural movements. Your first lessons will be easier if you are skier than a boarder, you will find it easier to stand up and having two edges instead of one will help you to turn and fall over less, also if you fall its generally backwards slowly onto your arse.
On a board you will spend a lot of time sitting down in the snow and the first lesson may even be “how to fall over and not hurt yourself”. Needless to say falling forwards on your head will happen, but is not to be recommended. Get wrist guards, it’s the most common bit to break as a boarder. Skiers tend to injure themselves when they get better, boarders are more likely to injure themselves as a beginner.

To begin with the skiers will appear to have the easier life, however it’s harder to manoeuvre 2 legs independently on skis than it is to control your 2 legs when they are fixed onto a board. The boarder will be able to go down steeper slopes because it is easier to stop on a board than it is on ski’s. It is also easy to “falling leaf” on a board which can get you safely down any slope. Learning to turn sideways and go up hill to stop is a lot harder to master on ski’s and since stopping is the most important thing for a beginner, boarders begin to get more confident quicker.
Basically what I am saying is that the learning curve on a board is a lot steeper however it’s a lot quicker to pick up. On the first day on ski’s you will most likely be snow ploughing down a slope quite happily, on a board you may not have mastered a turn without falling over. 5 days later the skier may be slowly turning across blue runs, whilst the boarder is happily mastering linking his turns on a red.

Lifts are where being on ski’s as a learner is great, they are easy to get on and off. On a board lifts, specifically T-bars and button lifts are a nightmare, try to stay away from them until you can control your board happily with just your front foot in. On ski’s they are fine and you will wonder why other people complain about them. Being on a board when you only have one foot in takes a while to get used to, and being chucked off an 8 man chair lift and having to navigate down a slope with no control and being squished between other people invariable leads to a spill. Once again on a board avoid button’s and t-bar like the plague. If you are on ski’s don’t get upset when the boarder next to you crashes into you getting off a lift, he didn’t mean to.
Other advice I have heard is get on t-bars and buttons as soon as you can and get the learning curve over and done with. That’s up to you, for me it’s too much to cope with.

Boarding is ultimately about freestyling (unless you pick a carving board etc). You will want to get off the piste and into the powder where a board excels, its also easier to pop off ramps and jumps on the piste, on ski’s you go down a piste, on a board you look for dips and rises that you can use to turn and jump off.

Some other things I think are important.
If you are going to stop on the piste, do it to one side and at the top of a hill, do not sit down or stand just over the lip of a hill, no one will see you and you will get hit. Do not stop in the middle of the piste people do not want to spend there time avoiding you.. Do not stop suddenly in the middle of a piste, someone behind will ram into you.
When you start off look behind and make sure you aren’t charging out right into someone else’s path.
When you are behind someone stay away from them as much as possible, they are watching the people in front of them, so should you. Try to ignore the people behind you, you will fall over if you look behind all the time.
If you are skiing down a path be aware it’s a lot harder for a boarder, they have to turn very tightly or go off the edge. On a board be aware that you obstruct the path if you decide to break sideways down a narrow piste, do not be surprised if your board is run over or you get yelled at.
When you get off a lift do not mill around aimlessly at the top and stop other people from going down the piste.

Last edited by PlantHead; 28.02.2008 at 17:04.
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Old 28.02.2008, 20:55
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

As i recall, the saying goes - there are no dumb questions, only dumb people....oh well. I've searched and searched, but can't find how to "thank" someone for their useful post. Can someone help me out? Thanks!!
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Old 28.02.2008, 23:01
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

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As i recall, the saying goes - there are no dumb questions, only dumb people....oh well. I've searched and searched, but can't find how to "thank" someone for their useful post. Can someone help me out? Thanks!!
done by proxy .... give it a few more posts & you will have the facility of groaning at Hugh Abu

nice
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Old 28.02.2008, 23:04
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

Thanks! I got there...
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Old 28.02.2008, 23:11
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

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blaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhh.

unless you can or have a passion to ski on or off Piste.
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Old 29.02.2008, 09:53
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

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unless you can or have a passion to ski on or off Piste.
How rude to quote me as blahhhhhh.....pah!!!

Never done off piste on ski's, was always told it was über hard and you needed to be pretty bloody good before you attempted it.
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Old 29.02.2008, 10:15
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

Im one of those learned to ski then learned to board then never skiied again types (with the addendum of being one of those learned to ski then learned to board then never skiied again but threatens occasionally to have a go on carving skis types).

I would add to this thread

1) Boarders on the whole have nothing against skiers but skiers are more predjudiced against boarders on the whole, perhaps mainly due to having a stereotypical view of boarders (and those who stupidly sit in the middle of the piste for a rest)

2) Boarding more often requires you to take your board off and walk on flat bits, compared to skiers who can often push themselves along the flat bits with their poles. This is most problematic for boarders who are learning to board. experienced boarders look ahead for flat parts and blat down them as fast as possible to avoid slowing to a standstill.

krlock3
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Old 07.10.2010, 17:18
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

Im an experienced boarder and skier including both offpiste. The floating surfing feeling of boarding on powder is second to none. However skiing on piste is way better than boarding. Also skiing is excellent offpiste and has the advantage of touring backcountry easier whereas boarding is much more difficult. Ive converted to skiing and sticking with it now
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Old 08.10.2010, 13:26
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

I hate the 'gays on trays' versus 'pricks on sticks' war. I learnt to ski when I was a toddler but was roped into learning to snowboard at the age of 49. If you can master both- it is just fabulous as you can make the best of any conditions you encounter- and the feeling is so different. As an older and chubby woman - I am always amazed at the friendship extended to me by young 'dudes' - who find it a bit surprising to see Dawn French's twin sister riding powder out there- or extending a helping hand when I am skiing fast on a flatty bit. I usually ski if the piste is hard and off piste cruddy- then board when it gets softer or when we get good powder.

And of course, here in the Jura I cross-country ski - and that is wonderful too - in a very different way. Wish I could Telemark, but my knees badly damaged in a terrible car crash in the early 70s, just won't let me try!
We all love snow- let's share it ...
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Old 11.10.2010, 12:50
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

This whole Skier vs Snowboarder happens only amongst tourists and weekend warriors. The next time you go to a mountain pay attention to the locals. Skiers and boarders riding with each other, drinking a beer with each other, and digging each other out of avalanches and saving each others a$$. How you get down the mountain is irrelevant whether its on Skies or a board or even a ski bike. (so long as its not those stupid mini skies (snoller blades) No one likes those things. lol As far as which is better its all about personal preference. Props to those who do both. Carve the icy hard pack on skis then float the pow on a board.
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Old 01.12.2010, 22:32
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

Always have been a skier, always will be - just hope I can keep my two pre-teens from getting into boarding, as this would make our offpiste trips together a little more difficult... fortunately the ever cooler freeride ski culture might help me ;-)
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Old 01.12.2010, 22:38
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

OMG... how long it took u to type all this text? haha

btw. none of those, i suck on both of them, but thats why im a good swimmer

Greets to all of you
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Old 02.12.2010, 07:01
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

Skiing is faster. Whether this is an advantage or disadvantage is up to you.
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Old 02.12.2010, 08:56
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

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Im an experienced boarder and skier including both offpiste. The floating surfing feeling of boarding on powder is second to none. However skiing on piste is way better than boarding. Also skiing is excellent offpiste and has the advantage of touring backcountry easier whereas boarding is much more difficult. Ive converted to skiing and sticking with it now
I agree with this and several other posts.

I love to ski fast and hard on-piste and find it much more dynamic. But when there is powder to be found, then you can't beat a board. I've also done lots of off piste, ski touring and even Heli-skiing. Not done Heli-boarding yet, but haven't been to the US/Canada since learning to board.

Learning to board is a lot faster, where in ca. 3 days, you can be doing red runs easily. I'd add a couple things about learning to board:

1/ Wrist gaurds (as already mentioned) are a MUST.
2/ Helmet a must
3/ Bump pads, not a bad idea
4/ Back guards, probably not a bad idea

The big difference (IMO) when you fall on a board compared to skiing is, that when you fall on a board, it tends to be because you caught an edge!!! Or put more simply your board has changed into an anchor, with your feet attached, the result being your body hits the piste at the speed you were travelling at -OUCH.....

Skiing you can fall more gracefully and almost sit down into the fall.

When you fall on a board, DON'T try and use your hands to slow the impact, this is how you break things (wrists/arms), they sometimes teach you to almost dive forwards so you don't so much hit the piste directly but dive across it. Falling backwards tends to be had on the butt and the head especially if the piste is hard.

My pet hates on a snowboard is hard or icy piste's (I hate the sound of a board scrapping across this type of surface, and it's hard work) where on ski's its great.

One thing I usually try and teach people when skiing, is to imagine that you want to drop forward onto your knees, which obviously can't happen as the combination of the ski's and boots won't allow this (this can be demonatrationed by reaching forward and touch the tips then coming back up again unassisted. This will direct your weight to your chins, and the front of the boot applying pressure to the tips of the ski's. Keep the tips of the ski's under control and the tails will follow.

A good excercise to practise when skiing or boarding is to choose a suitable incline, stand parallel to it, then drop the tips (or front of board) down the slope (start with ca. 10 degrees), then turn back up to stop. Keep doing this and as your confidence grows let the speed gather more each time and/or increase the angle down the slope. Also combing this with side slipping (dropping the edge away from the slope) then stopping, using your edges. This will give you a good feel of the skis/board. Then try this on the other side.

Finally always try and stay within your capability, never ski/board alone, stop where it is safe to, have fun and stay safe.
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Old 02.12.2010, 10:18
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

Last year I was determined to tackle the black run off the top of Weissfluhjoch (Parsenn) down to middle station. I hadn't done it before - and was feeling happy having changed from a NeverSummer Premier T5 to the NeverSummer Legacy - a board designed for more "piste" conditions - but still capable in the powder.

By the time I got up there - the wind was up and the surface had been blown away. Not icey as in polished ice, but that incredibly hard compacted snow. Combined with a decent gradient there wasn't a hope in hell of being able to bottle it and "edge" down.

I stood, I surveyed, I clenched, I turned and slid over the edge. What followed was arguably the most technically challenging and enjoyable piste run I have ever done. Because of the surface I was forced to make every turn, make it hard, make it fast and keep the level of control at a maximum.

I got down to middle station with a huge grin on my face. I said to the operator about the conditions - and his response? "Does it matter? You have the right board!"

I haven't skied since my first snow day 6 years ago - when my (now) wife got annoyed with me and forced me to learn boarding.
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Old 02.12.2010, 10:24
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

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Last year I was determined to tackle the black run off the top of Weissfluhjoch (Parsenn) down to middle station. I hadn't done it before - and was feeling happy having changed from a NeverSummer Premier T5 to the NeverSummer Legacy - a board designed for more "piste" conditions - but still capable in the powder.

By the time I got up there - the wind was up and the surface had been blown away. Not icey as in polished ice, but that incredibly hard compacted snow. Combined with a decent gradient there wasn't a hope in hell of being able to bottle it and "edge" down.

I stood, I surveyed, I clenched, I turned and slid over the edge. What followed was arguably the most technically challenging and enjoyable piste run I have ever done. Because of the surface I was forced to make every turn, make it hard, make it fast and keep the level of control at a maximum.

I got down to middle station with a huge grin on my face. I said to the operator about the conditions - and his response? "Does it matter? You have the right board!"

I haven't skied since my first snow day 6 years ago - when my (now) wife got annoyed with me and forced me to learn boarding.
Sounds like great terrain for my Burton Ultra prime which won't turn you are at least doing 100mph (ok slight exaggerated) Would have been great on skis too I'm sure.
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Old 02.12.2010, 10:27
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

I can do both. I mainly chose to snowboard.
I was much better at skiing - but my fitness is now crap.
I can get down a slope faster on a pair of skis ....

But I would grab the board as the first option ... but I nothing like the confidence I do on skis ... and I have no idea why!
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Old 02.12.2010, 11:21
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

forget about alpine...

...lets go nordic, some real sport and maybe the best workout exerercise:
cross-country skiing



for all Zürich-folks: there is great nordic resort just round the corner, near Wetzikon in Gibswil.
http://www.panoramaloipe.ch/panoramaloipe/index.html

you can rent equipment right on the spot: Ruedi Vontobel, 079 675 01 35 / 055 246 40 25
there are beginners lessons on 11. December

see you there!
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Old 02.12.2010, 11:47
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

Being a relative newbie to skiing...5 or 6 seasons...and now confident to do most slopes...I have thought about giving boarding a go... However having gone out on the slopes with a mixed group I am not sure if can be bothered with all the hassle of learning, struggling on inclines, clip in clip out clip in clip out..etc..
However reading some of the comments may persuade me to at least give it a day...
Also while out with a mate (boarder) it seems that boarding is alot more work on the legs since you cannot rest and cruise like with skiing, hence several stops per run...If it is more of a workout then I would be keen to give it ago...

Negative points...setting up and getting ready...(I have skis and can get straight on the slope)....falling over more...hence injury and delaying a running season..but both can be overcome in a few days...(by the sounds of it) and of course ski lifts...no 'board' lifts..? IMO

Positive points..powder..mmm...powder, freestyle..althought I do go looking for humps, jumps and weavy bits on skis...IMO
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Old 02.12.2010, 13:10
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Re: Skiing v's Snowboarding

Not all snowboard bindings are made equal.

You can get FLOW bindings which are as easy to get in and out of as Ski bindings.
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