I'm a 2nd season snowboarder just starting out with parks and stumbled upon this post while searching "180 snowboard". Aren't there some heated discussions above =). I'll share some of my experiences below. Forgive me if my English is not perfect.
I'm trying to nail down my 180s, I can already do it in all four direction across the hill on flat, and I started by doing it "counter-rotating". In my opinion this idea exists, the same way a cat can land on its fours when released up-side-down. If you watch a cat in slow-mo, its torso rotates clockwise and arms counter-clockwise to allow paws touch floor first. Then as soon as it has traction, torso follows up and your cat is now in its normal position.
However, you can only twist so much before you become a wringing towel, therefore it's not an ideal way to do spins off jumps. Your cat can land on its feet when up-side-down, but it's the maximum it can do (180s). It certainly can't do a 540 and land on its paws this way; too much rotation will probably crush its spine.
Now talking about my first-hand experience, I started in the counter-rotating way because it seems more comfortable to a newbie. For front 180s, instead of pre-winding and looking away from the direction of travel, you wind the other way, looking AT the direction of travel, and then jump in the air, twist your body and land it. Unfortunately the correct way to do stuff is often counter intuitive. For reasons mentioned above, you can do it for 180s, but it's not a good way to progress into 3s and 5s and is not as stable as the other way.
In simple words: Counter-rotating exists, like the back and forth rotating you would do standing on a office chair. However you can't use it for spins more than 180 just as you can't do it on an office chair; therefore it's not ideal for spinning off a jump.
As for me, I just switched from counter-rotating to rotating; it feels so much better and more stable for the landing. However, I DO still keep my counter-rotations for on and off boxes and rails.
Last edited by flatcoke; 02-18-2013 at 05:19 PM.