I got a great question from Balint Fabry via our Facebook Wall:
Could you write something about the recommended distance between the feet? And does it make sense fix the bindings closer to the tail (or nose)?
Good question, so lets answer it!
How far apart should my bindings be?
The technical name for this is ‘Stance Width’ and it’s a lot of personal preference. A good starting point is to set your bindings at about the same distance as your shoulder width. Measure yourself from one shoulder to the other (or get a friend to help) and that will give you a starting width.
You’ll want to try it out on the hill and see how it feels.
Next you’ll want to play around with it and move it either wider or closer together and see how it feels for you.
What happens if I move them wider?
Moving your bindings wider gives you stability, but it will also make it harder to turn and spin. Many park riders will set their stance pretty wide, but don’t go too overboard because that can lead to knee injuries and problems turning.
What happens if I move them closer together?
Moving your bindings closer together makes it a lot easier to turn and spin, but it also makes you less stable when riding. Again, have a play with this and see how you feel.
You want to find the sweet spot that feels best for you, so keep playing around with it and see how wide your prefer.
Should I position my bindings closer to the nose or tail or in the middle?
Unless you’re riding powder, you’ll want your bindings centered. Every snowboard has a mark on each set of binding holes that gives you a centered starting point for setting up your bindings. This is called the ‘Reference point’, look for that point.
If you want to make your stance wider, don’t just move one binding. Make sure you always move both bindings outwards in inwards by the same amount. This keeps them nice and centered.
Moving your bindings closer to the tail
The only time you might want to move your bindings away from a centered position is if you’re riding powder. Moving your bindings closer to the tail can make it easier to keep your nose up in deep snow conditions.
You don’t have to do this, I don’t generally do it, but it can be helpful if you’re really having problems keeping that nose up in deep powder.
To keep your normal width while doing this, you need to move both bindings towards the tail by the same amount.
EG – If you wanted to move your stance 1 inch closer to the tail, you’d move each binding 1 inch closer to the tail.
Have fun playing with your binding positions, it does take some time and testing to figure out what stance width you prefer, so don’t be afraid to play around and move them about.
Remember that it’s A LOT of personal preference. You’ll find pros who ride with ridiculously wide stances because it feels stable, but you’ll also find pros who sometimes ride with narrow stances because it allows them to spin easier.
If anyone is still confused, leave a comment and I’ll try my best to help you out.
Have a great weekend!