Today’s reader question:
Do I need to hit a 20+ foot jumps to learn how to do clean 360s? I’ve been trying them on smaller jumps, but the rotation doesn’t come around, would a bigger jump make it easier?
No, keep trying them on smaller jumps. This is actually a really, really common snowboard mistake when it comes to learning to spin 360s so let’s talk about why.
Bigger isn’t always better (that’s what she said…)
The fact is you don’t need a big jump to do a 360. In fact, you don’t even need a jump to learn 360s. You can learn the basic movement and rotation for 360s on a simple green run.
Let’s say you’re standing in your living room without your snowboard. Can you jump up and spin a 360 just on your feet? How long were you in the air to spin that 360? That short air time is literally all the airtime that’s required for a 360 on a snowboard.
This is why you can learn 360s off the tiniest of tiny jumps. In fact, it’s going to be safer learning on a small jump because there’s a lower chance of injury if/when you mess things up.
Then why can’t I get enough rotation?
Learning to create rotation is all about technique, not effort. The big mistake a lot of people make when learning to spin is they think getting rotation is all about hucking your body into a spin as hard as you can.
Throwing your body into a 360 rotation without the proper technique will actually make your technique even worse, which is why so many people struggle with 360s.
They can’t get enough rotation so they decide it’s all about more power and air time when really they should be working on their technique.
The bottom line
When you can’t get enough rotation for 360s, don’t try to brute force the rotation with more power. Look at your technique to find the reason you aren’t getting rotation.
Are you carving correctly? Are you releasing the carve at the wrong time? Are you popping? I’d say 9 out of 10 times the problem with not getting enough rotation is caused by incorrect carving (which creates the spin pressure) or incorrect release timing (which releases the spin pressure to create rotation).
Spinning takes times to learn and it’ll take practice, but when you get the technique and timing correct, you can spin even 540s and 720s off tiny jumps.
ps – New GoPro video coming up demonstrating exactly how I learn and practice spinning 360s and more. It’ll be on the Snomie TV YouTube channel by tomorrow morning.