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I'm Sorry We've Tried But We Just Don't Get it?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
We've always skied but probably more so me, I always wanted to learn to board. I'm fairly open minded so I never set out with the idea I would never ski again I just wanted to learn. Our initial learning we talked about here with amazing conditions and a great instructor.

The learning we found brutal (and not cheap, private lessons and a holiday doing nothing else but falling) but we promised ourselves that when we went to Les Arcs last week we would continue to practice. We were told it takes time to 'click'. We practised every morning for a few hours. Conditions were great and yes we can snowboard but I just couldn't wait to get my skis on and have a blast with the kids in the afternoon. Let me outline my issues.

Cons........

- Lifts (and we haven't even tried a drag lift Shocked ). Two things here, bindings must come of, the on, then off, then on. On my skis I am half way up the lift by the time I have my bindings sorted and shuffled to the lift. 2nd. Getting of the fecking lift. Its terrifying. You fall or hit someone, no other option Sad

- Bindings. As above. I have flow which are quick but its just becomes boring. You hit a flat bit and binding comes of or you waddle.

- Peripheral vision. Vastly reduced compared to when I ski. I don't like having no idea where wife and kids are.

- Falling. It hurts.

- Flatish sections.......The fear of catching an edge and re-arranging your face

- Flat sections - Taking your bindings of and pushing the fecking thing.

Pros........

- Boots. Never suffered from cold feet or the need to break my ankle every morning to get your boots on

- You really annoy skiers. Its funny but the complete look of hatred amongst many skiers we encountered last week was amazing, ok our 'encounters' may have involved taking them out as we got of lifts (wife was pretty special at this) or hitting their skis as we shuffled to lift but they do hate boarders.

- It is better to board than not ski at all......................

While the above sounds very negative and I am sure by getting better as few of the issues will go away but I like the buzz of being high up in a mountain and I felt nothing on a board that I don't feel on skis? We are going to go for another week in March, we are not going to sell the boards but think we are now going to buy ourselves new and good skis and maybe next year have a try on the boards again. As we can ski I think in summary we just can't figure out what boarding will give us over skiing?
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Fair play for giving it a go and making an educated decision about it though...
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
thefatcontroller, Get the gear on e-bay quick. I've just sold a load of the kids old skis, poles, helmets, jackets, saloppettes etc some for more than we paid for it Shocked
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thefatcontroller, good job on deciding to continue. i think if you get a chance to ride powder once it all "clicks", you'll be singing a v different tune. (though i don't now how fat skis compare?) i hope you do continue to snowboard. it's a lot of fun. and the whole bindings on again/off again does become easier. getting off the lift also gets easier.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
thefatcontroller, I skied for years before having a go at boarding. I must have been the world's worst boarder, it took me several years to be able to link turns confidently. But, once it comes together that feeling of carving turns is just superb, and that's before you hit powder.

I still ski (especially when icy) and enjoy it, but I perfer boarding and it's good to be able to do both & have the option to choose according to snow conditions.
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1. You're not good enough yet.

2. You haven't tried powder.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Agreed. Just wait for that powder day.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
thefatcontroller, all this sounds very familiar. I tried snowboarding with the idea of doing it for a whole month when I did my season. I took lessons and gave it a fair go. But I only lasted three weeks. Yes I could get down red runs and was barely falling over by that stage. But it just didn't do it for me.

Too many little things are irritating, lifts and flat bits are the obvious ones, but also the fact that you can't stand and chat to your mates. You have to sit on the snow and get a cold bum. Then there's the turns, I found I could do 'heel' turns much easier than 'toe' turns, but that appears to be it, are there any other types of turn to learn? Or is that why snowboarders head off-piste or to the park to learn new stuff? I couldn't do short radius turns at all, I got the impression that is not what snowboarding is about.

What else? I'm a big girl and I look stupid in baggy gear. Then there's always the 'old dog, new tricks' thing.

Overall, I was very glad I tried it but couldn't wait to get back on skis and have never felt tempted to try and snowboard again. Each to their own eh?
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you simply have not become good enough yet


- Lifts (and we haven't even tried a drag lift Shocked ). Two things here, bindings must come of, the on, then off, then on. On my skis I am half way up the lift by the time I have my bindings sorted and shuffled to the lift. 2nd. Getting of the fecking lift. Its terrifying. You fall or hit someone, no other option Sad

....... in time you will be able to ride up to the gate and skip out of your rear binding, and rarely fall off the other side

- Bindings. As above. I have flow which are quick but its just becomes boring. You hit a flat bit and binding comes of or you waddle.

....... in time you begin to read the piste and hit the flats at a speed to get over them

- Peripheral vision. Vastly reduced compared to when I ski. I don't like having no idea where wife and kids are.

....... as you get better you get more confident and are looking around more

- Falling. It hurts.

....... in time you stop falling

- Flatish sections.......The fear of catching an edge and re-arranging your face

....... in time this stops happening

- Flat sections - Taking your bindings of and pushing the fecking thing.

as above

I do not think boarding is going to give you much over skiing because i presume you ski well, but it is just another fun way of getting down the mountain, but good on you for trying

oh yes, I forgot, .... powder......, you float on it in comparison to bouncing through it on skis Very Happy
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thefatcontroller, I know where you're coming from. Every season i do a bit of boarding (when conditions are perfect and I can have entire chairlifts to myself). I can do easy draglifts with no big problem. But I've definitely not hit "take off", or whatever. I spend a day on a board when I have a beginner friend who wants to lap an easy slope. I don't fall so much these days, I can link turns down easy blue slopes, I've not yet ever knocked anyone over (though I have been known to throw myself to the ground rather than risk mowing down a string of 4 year olds).

But it's harder work, it hurts more, my legs have never really caught up, and I can ski really quite competently.

I like having the option, and will continue to give it a go from time to time, but I know, deep down, that unless I give it a lot more time and effort I'll never get there. Just a few days each season will never get me there. There's certainly absolutely no way I'd waste any time with it on a 6 day holiday, but when we're here for weeks on end - that's different.

My son is a very good skier and a pretty competent boarder (several seasons working in the Alps). He will always take the board on a powder day, and the skis when pistes are hard and the off piste is finished. He's young and strong (whereas I am an old age pensioner) but he does say that a day boarding is far more knackering than a day skiing.
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
thefatcontroller, as rayscoops says you simply aren't good enough yet.

Snowboarding is singularly one of the hardest things I've ever had to conquer (word chosen carefully).

I tend to pick things up annoyingly easily, certainly was the case with how quickly my skiing improved, but snowboarding almost beat me. I came within a whisker of giving up, even buying a pair of skis half way through a trip to WB after a week of getting nowhere on a board (third week in total).

Went out to SerChe a month after returning and only chucked the board in with my skis just prior to setting out, last chance saloon.

And there it clicked. After spending a morning playing around with the bindings, adjusting them a dozen or more times, I found settings I could progress on. I also focused more on feeling comfortable, and enjoying it, than concentrating on doing it "correctly" as I'd been instructed.

But on one day in every two weeks or so on a board I still have a bad day and could quite easily put an axe through the damn thing. Even now she's a fickle mistress.

I'm guessing you're a reasonably accomplished skier, so the pain and frustration make little sense when you could be enjoying yourself (my Bro-in-Lo's understandable reasons). But for all the reasons mentioned, stick with it, and as you once alienated all your non-skiing mates with your new found love of skiing, so you will all your skiing mates with your new found passion of boarding.

Good luck.

John.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Great thread.. I was contemplating spending a couple of weeks boarding this season, perhaps I won't bother.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
I've only done a week of Boarding as a complete beginner but I noticed the the conditions made a huge difference. The first three days it snowed every night and i had a beautiful soft layer of powder to learn on, the last two days it got icy and it was very different and quite horrible in comparison.
I wore wrist guards and an impact pad to cover my bottom so falling never hurt and i never got a cold bottom either.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
I've done 5 1/2 hours and love it.
Playing with a board on a hill is fun Toofy Grin
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
y'see i'm looking at this from the other side of the fence - i've never put ski's on in my life (apart from a set of stubbies once, for an activity i'm not proud of) but part of me does fancy giving it a go but then another part says do i want to go through that whole falling/flailing/frustration thing again when i know i could be using my limited mountain time on the board doing something i know i love...

Maybe i'll have a crack at it in HH or something when the missus does a board-in-a-day thing...
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
thefatcontroller,

I'm just going to add another vote to what has already been said.
When I first tried boarding in the mid 90s for 2/3 days, I was like you: too much pain, too much hassle and what was the point when I was already a competent skier for many years.. So I didn't bother.
Then I was "forced" to take boarding on again 4 seasons ago when I went on a trip where everyone was beginner boarder. I would have been bored all day on my skis waiting for everyone so I joined as beginner boarder again.
A painful couple of days and I thought here we go again... Face plants were awful, I dreaded coming off lifts and flats caused me to poo-poo myself, I was exhausted in the evenings etc..
But gradually it clicked, I didn't rearrange the face so often, I bought protection for the knees, got a helmet, decent gloves+wrist guards, got more confident...and started to seriously enjoy it!
The fact that we can ski put us in the best position: when I'm too tired (like last year after a very intense day of boarding) or want to enjoy some serious speed, or especially when it's too icy then I ski for the day..recharge the batteries ready for boarding again..
As has been said, if you stick at it, quicker than you think you'll get to a level where you don't fall nearly as often and where you really enjoy the sensations...where you're in and out of bindings very quickly and where flat aren't half the problem they used to be..

Sometimes it's a little detail that makes it happen: my wife struggled all her first morning, couldn't do a falling leaf, was basically going where the slope angle was taking her. I'd set her bindings as per mine (both with forward angle). Then she inquired as to what "duck" (she heard the term from mates) was. I explained and then decide to set her bindings in "duck" (-9°/+9°) and it all clicked. She could the falling leaf and get down teh mountain in a controlled manner...

Anyway, whatever you decide, good on you for trying. I suggest you keep at it a little bit more.. a day or morning every so often...then you might just see the light (of the darkside..) Toofy Grin
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I want to add that one of the thing I do enjoy most with boarding these days is having to learn averything again!
I'm only an intermediate and so I can still visibly progress on each trip and everytime I do something new it is exhilarating!!
One of my best/proudest moment recently is when coming down a black run, in bad light, in Ischgl back in December, quite a few of my mates whooped as I passed by them and then said to me that I "looked the part" coming down at speed and looking assured...
Suddenly I felt like "I'm getting somewhere with this boarding thing!" and then wanted to do more again..


Last edited by Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person on Mon 11-01-10 9:48; edited 2 times in total
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Kruisler, how many days on a board have you now done ?
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About 14 days since January 07..
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Kruisler, as you say above, you must be still on that massive learning curve whereby you learn things every trip (no pun intended). It would be superb if you could get 10 days in this season and then you would really see things happen, any chance of this happening ? when are you next in the alps on your board ?
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Practise makes perfect.... Very Happy
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rayscoops,
10 days won't happen unfortunately..or it's highly unlikely.
Did 3 days in Ischgl in December
Going for 4 days to Kitzbuhel in 16 days.
Hoping to sneak in a day or two in Andorra at easter when visiting family but nothing booked so far..
Another wild idea is a cheap WE flight to Munich, where a mate lives, then drive to nearish resort for the day.
It'll all depend on prices and the fact that unfortunately, I only have 20 days holiday a year, so I can't use them all boarding without the family, it would not be too popular..
I was gonna go for a day trip in the pyrenees at chrismas but poor conditions and my little girl being ill prevented us from going.. Took the board on the roofrack on a 1500 miles return journey for nothing! LOL...
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Kruisler, 1500 miles ! now that is dedication !!
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im doin th eopposite.. only ever boarded tried sling last year and will have another go this year.. il get the skis out when the weather is grim .. getting round the resort is much easier true but i had no idea sking was sooo one legged
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I used to think that the learning curve for skiing and snowboarding was back to front, but I reckon these days that boarding is just harder to do well, full stop. Just look at the recent clips on TV, not too much quality in evidence.

But boarding is good fun and it's nice to have a different option to skiing on the days you need one.

I invested a couple of 'proper' powder days last season boarding off piste, but ski'(and poles) are a better choice for mobility. But soft spring snow - lovely.
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CANV CANVINGTON, i am thinking/planning to have a go at skiing this year, never been on skis at all so it should be a laugh !!
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
I've had about eight days on a board, I think.

Problem was; as soon as there was snowfall I got out the skis to enjoy it. And it hurts a lot Evil or Very Mad
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
rayscoops,

No real dedication: I went down south to spend christmas with my family. That put me a couple of hours form a ski resorts so decided to take my gear on the off chance.
Didn't work out though.. Sad
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
i'm in the "i pick things up annoyingly easily camp". linked turns by the first afternoon. i also consequently have quite an overactive confidence gland. towards the end of the first afternoon i was quite happily cruising down a blue run at about 20mph when i discovered the incorrect use of the toe edge resulting in the dlassic superman fall. having been told 'never put your hands out, you'll break your wrists i went in elbows first. thought for a moment i'd popped both shoulders and had the most spectacular forearm bruising.

after five weeks now i'm 'proficient' i think. i love the powder days, but am not looking forward to the first ice day. in fact this time i might even take some ski boots.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
rogg, ice or boiler plate is a real leveller Shocked
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
rayscoops wrote:
rogg, ice or boiler plate is a real leveller Shocked


Or the real flattener.................... Skullie

rogg I linked turns first run on snow, having had a couple of diasterous dry slope kickings. Doing it with any kind of aplomb was the hard bit.

And have you ever noticed this. Skiers mostly enjoy learning, judging by the whoops and smiles. I know I did.

Next time you see a learner boarder, have a good look. Wet ar$e, red face, cold, unsmiling, thoroughly dejected. Limping along, maybe clutching a shoulder, dragging a board behind 'em, which would most likely be slung if it didn't need to go back to the rental shop.

Happy days.

John.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
BCjohnny wrote:
Next time you see a learner boarder, have a good look. Wet ar$e, red face, cold, unsmiling, thoroughly dejected. Limping along, maybe clutching a shoulder, dragging a board behind 'em, which would most likely be slung if it didn't need to go back to the rental shop.


A perfect summary of mrsfatcontroller last week, in particular Friday morning Laughing Laughing
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
I recognise some of that description! But also, just occasionally, I have cruised (rather slowly and carefully) past somebody in that state. that feels good. I think Kruisler's being "forced" to spend a week boarding is the answer. Just do it. I did tell myself I would, last season, when we had no visitors and I had no excuses. But then we had a long period with no snow and the pistes, though fine for skiing, were very, very, hard. So then I did have an excuse.

The "learning" bit is certainly rewarding - but I also enjoy learning new things on skis. thing is, if I have a fall on skis going fast, you just kind of hurtle along, rarely hurts. Whereas I really am rather scared of falling at any speed on the board - I've done a couple of cartwheels at quite slow speeds. I'm torn. some days I think "you're an old lady, you can ski OK, why push your luck by arsing around on a snowboard". other days I think "Why not? Just stick to soft snow days, don't do too much, give it a go".
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BCJohnny - I noticed that skiers don't really fall over at all when learning. Everybody told me to expect it while learning to Board so I did, to the point where I think my instructor thought i was doing it deliberately to make him look bad! But in my 5 days I never felt like what you described - except on my first day on ice when I suddenly couldn't seem to do the stuff I'd been doing the previous 4 days (linked turns on a blue without face planting) simply because the conditions were different.

I invested in gear to protect my bottom and my wrists and wore a helmet and never felt too beaten up though. But i have to say, its good to hear on this thread that some others admit to finding it difficult! I still dream of one day being able to look graceful and confident gliding down a powdery slope but i know i have to put the effort in to do so.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
to be honest the best way to learn is to cram as many days together as possible and ride slopes/flats that you are struggling with. I was quite happy riding anything except the narrow paths that you often find heading back to the resort and after falling in flat light on the icy, shaded and bumps ridden (snow canon snow) home run at 5pm to Medran in Verbier a few years ago I was ready to quit, on the basis that if I can not ride it I should not be riding at all. A few beers and a good nights sleep and the next day I was on the first lift looking for every narrow track I could find and did the home run a few times before lunch.

I suppose it is all just practice in the end Very Happy

I am hoping for an easier intro to skiing Little Angel
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rayscoops, Skiing is a piece of p*ss to learn compared to boarding, harder to master but much easier to learn.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
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thefatcontroller, all that heavy boot stuff and not being able to run around, carrying skis and poles, people mixing their skis up and ending with the wrong ones, losing skis after a fall and all that faff putting them back on, millions of lessons just to be able to nip between pistes, dropping poles off a chair lift, walking up stairs Shocked , different skis for different conditions, jeeze .... I just don't get it Laughing

but I will be trying to learn this year hopefully and maybe put in the same amount of time as you have on a board so it should be interesting to see how I get on Shocked
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
I've tried it twice, I sucked REAL BAD at it, which struck me as odd, since I like skating and surfing. Binned it evertime I tried a toe-edge turn.

Last year I heard about the shy, some say mythical creature, the "wide board". I can only assume that these do not breed in the captive environment of a hire shop back room, as I've never ruddy seen one.

Suffice to say, next time I have a pop I'm getting something that actually fits my size 12 plates.
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Cunners, you can get 'lifter' plates which bring the bindings off the board by 5 or 10mm which helps if you have big feet like me.
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Cunners wrote:
Last year I heard about the shy, some say mythical creature, the "wide board". I can only assume that these do not breed in the captive environment of a hire shop back room, as I've never ruddy seen one.


ah that rare old breed, the wide board, perhaps a good idea with size 12 clodhoppers Very Happy
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