Want to land a 360? How about doing a perfect frontside boardslide down a steep rail? Join the club… almost every snowboarder learning freestyle wants smooth spins and stylish rail tricks.
However, most don’t get there. While on TV it may look like every pro boarder is doing triple cork spins, that’s the top 1% of all snowboarders. The other 99% will never reach that level.
I’d go as far as to say that only the top 5% of all snowboarders will ever be able to do stylish 360 spins consistently and far less will go on to learn fancy cork or double corked spins.
Why I’m telling you this…
I’m not saying this to discourage you, but rather to be realistic and tell you why so many boarders don’t get there.
Most snowboarders don’t get there because of 2 things:
- Lack of time on snow
- Snowboard ADD
Let’s look at this further.
Lack of time on snow is a roadblock… sometimes…
The average snowboarder only gets 1-2 trips to the snow per year, if that. They simply don’t get enough time on snow to learn smooth freestyle techniques because by the time they start to understand things, their year is over.
It’s pretty dam hard to learn to stomp smooth 360s if you only ride 1-5 days per year. Not going to happen.
However, I don’t take most of you guys as the 1-5 day per year type of snowboarders. If you’re reading this blog and serious about getting better, you’re probably not a casual snowboarder.
You may not be a 100 day per year rider, but from my last survey of the Snomie.com readers, most of you guys at least try to get out to the snow when you can and roughly sit between 10-25 days on snow per year.
I’ll tell you a secret… that’s enough to learn smooth 360s and put you in that top 5% of snowboarders. It’s not exactly easy, but it is doable.
So… if it’s possible to do on a limited amount of days on snow, why do so many snowboarders still struggle to learn smooth spins and stylish rail tricks?
I call the problem snowboard ADD because it’s how most snowboarders learning freestyle behave and it stops them from mastering most techniques. They jump from one thing to another thing to another thing.
One day it’s trying to spin off jumps, another day it’s riding trees, another day it’s riding groomers. Look I get it. Snowboarding is fun and it’s good to mix it up, but if I’m honest, 10 to 25 days on snow isn’t much time to learn.
Humans love to multi-task and it goes for snowboarding too. We like to juggle and learn 50 different things at once.
And you know what, it’s actually possible to become a kickass snowboarder while learning 50 skills mashed together over 100 days on the slope. After all, that’s how most pros and locals become good snowboarders.
They learn everything and do it from a young age so that by the time they’re 18 they’ve become amazingly in all areas of snowboarding. However, most of you guys don’t have 100 day seasons every year like them.
So you can either do one of two things if you want to join that 5% of snowboarders with smooth style and mastery of basic freestyle techniques like 360s and frontside boardslides:
Focus or move to a ski resort and get 100-200 days per season.
What focus means…
I’m going to assume most of you aren’t going to move to a ski resort right away and you have your reasons for not doing so, but that means you have to focus if you want to learn freestyle.
This means not bouncing around with snowboard ADD and doing everything. If you want to learn 360s, then focus on 360s until you get it down.
Trust me, you’ll learn faster with focus on one snowboard technique/area at a time. If you want to do 360s, then break it down. What do you need to learn? Carving? Straight airs? Jumps? Popping?
Make a list and go through it until you master each of the skills you need. Don’t bounce around randomly like every other snowboarder.
It’s simple: If every 10 to 25 day snowboarder bounces around learning 50 different snowboard skills and isn’t able to learn smooth spins or stylish rail tricks, then don’t expect to be able to do it by doing the same thing.
You can’t expect to master snowboard techniques quickly if you jump from technique to technique before getting some mastery of each technique first.
Be different and focus on the exact individual skills that you need to learn to get to where you want with your freestyle riding. That’s how you learn fast and effectively when you have limited days to snowboard.
ps: Or move to a ski resort… just throwing it out there