Today’s reader question:
What should I start next winter with? Should I pimp my switch first without jumping, or start spinning backside, or forget about spinning until I can easily hold all 4 basic grabs off any jump? Or maybe rail tricks?
Here’s a classic problem that a lot of people learning snowboarding and freestyle have. There’s A LOT you want learn. Do you start with jumps or rails or switch or grabs or carving etc etc.
Here’s my suggestion.
Focus on one thing at a time and break your time up
I wrote before that focusing on fewer tricks can help you learn faster, however, I do know that focusing on just one thing for an entire day of riding is hard.
Spending an entire day on just one trick or technique can be frustrating at times and make you burn out if you aren’t enjoying it. Let’s face it, none of us enjoy riding switch on easy green/blue runs for 7 hours when there’s jumps and so much fun terrain at the ski resort.
So what’s the solution?
Break your day into sections and focus on one thing at a time.
First, make a list in your head of the top 3 to 5 snowboard techniques you want to work on. The trick here is that even though we’re focusing on one thing at a time, it doesn’t mean we can do this several times per day.
For example, if you spend 6 hours on the slope in a day, you could break it up into a 3 to 4 slots of 1 to 2 hours. That way you’re focusing on the top 3-4 different techniques that you want to learn.
So, you could spend a couple hours working on jumps, an hour on rails, a couple hours having fun cruising on the slopes and an hour at the end of the day to practice some switch.
The key here is that it’s okay to work on more than one new technique every day, just make sure that when you are working on something, you’re focused on just that technique.
So in the 1 hour that you might be practicing switch, don’t be doing half a lap of switch then changing over to trying butter tricks mid lap then swapping over to carving towards the end of that same lap.
Focus on 1 technique at a time, until you feel satisfied or you need a break. For me, that’s usually an hour or two, then I’ll swap it out and work on something else.
You don’t have to copy me though. Do whatever length of time makes you comfortable. That may be an hour or it may even be 5 hours if you’re really motivated to learn that new technique.
Remember, the key is that even though we might work on several new techniques during a day on the slopes, we’re trying to stay focused on 1 technique at a time.
Once you get more experienced, you might be able to juggle several new tricks and techniques in the same lap like some of the pros do during a park lap, but take it a step at a time and see how you go.