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Old 11-17-2008, 07:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
Patrickg
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Default Need Board selection advice!

I am buying a snowboard for my brother as his Christmas gift. He just moved to New York City from Florida. Growing up in Florida, we are both very good at board sports (wakeboarding, surfing, skate boarding, etc.) He wants to start snowboarding in his area and several times a year in Colorado. Growing up, we took trips to go snowboarding about five times and spent five days each trip. We aren't great, but we improve quickly. The first time we went snowboarding, we caught on after the first day and did well. The second trip, we rented more advanced (and longer) boards. We weren't able (not sure of the snowboarding lingo) to carve as well to the inside. We ended up having a lot more speed since we would straighten up and only carve with our backs to the top of the slope. The reduced carving ability and faster speeds made us uncomfortable doing jumps or difficult slopes at those speeds. I also ended up with three breaks in my left arm (not fun). I know that he will improve, but I don't want to buy him a board that is too much for him to handle at the beginning. He is 160 pounds, 5'11", "Goofy-foot", and no body fat. I only want to spend 250 on a board and my sister will buy the boots. I am not sure if that amount will even buy me something decent. What should I look for? brand? length? width? anything else? I appreciate any and all help!
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Old 11-17-2008, 07:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
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What is his foot size? And, don't forget about the bindings. The boots are something that he should try on and get what fits his feet the best.
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Old 11-17-2008, 07:52 PM   #3 (permalink)
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His foot is size US size 10 1/2. I didn't realize the bindings don't come with the boots. It wouldn't be a problem buying a board and bindings, then letting him buy his own boots. Thanks for the quick response.
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Old 11-17-2008, 07:53 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I would recommend NOT buying his boots. You can take him to try them on and buy them for him, but unless he has tried them on, don't buy them. They require the participation of the wearer. As for brands, it really is a personal decision. If he doesn't ride in the park, you'll probably want something stiffer for bindings that will help him with turns since he seems to have a problem there.

I don't like to recommend board lengths because I don't adhere to what people usually recommend myself.
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Old 11-17-2008, 07:56 PM   #5 (permalink)
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The breaks in your arm probably came from trying to do jumps before you could carve, no offense. You gotta learn to ride before you can start doing tricks, having plenty of boarding experience you'll progress quickly, but for the love of your limbs, wait until you're comfortable on black diamond terrain at least before you start flying off stuff. You might wanna even take a few lessons to break some bad habits, since you're using the heelside turn as crutch, and you're going to be wanting to 'surf' the board.

He's my exact size, what I got was a Rome Solution 158, it's a nice enough board to not hold him back, since I'm sure he'll move along quick, but it's not a beast either so he'll be able to learn on it. If you can find last years, you should be able to pick one up for $250. That's just one suggestion based on what I got, there are dozens of options out there. I'd go with something 156-158.
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Old 11-17-2008, 07:56 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Argh! You post too fast.

I have 10.5 boot size, but that may not be his BOOT size. Snowboard boots run smaller than street shoes. If his boot is a 10.5 then you can get L/XL Rome Arsenals. They are what I have used since I bought my own gear and I love them. But again, it's personal preference. He may not like the style of Rome.
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Old 11-17-2008, 08:13 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Find out what sports stores are near him like REI or some other place..and just get him a $200-300 dollar gift card or something to spend there on a good pair of boots.

As the others have said there is no way to buy somebody else boots, its not like shoes where one size fits all size 9's..everyone has different shaped feet that will get uncomfortable with the wrong boots..and it will ruin his experience.
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Old 11-17-2008, 08:47 PM   #8 (permalink)
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How I broke my wrist (Ulna, Radius, and Thumb): I was trying to catch up to some people at the bottom of the slope. I was flying down the slope and did a big carve to the inside. I leaned my back towards the bottom of the slope to transition the carve to the opposite direction. When I did it switched to the opposite edge of the board too quickly and I stuck my arm out to catch myself when I fell (bad, bad, bad, idea to use one arm to catch a quick fall).

There were four of us snowboarding together and two of us had the longer boards. The shop ran out of the intermediate boards and the ones they rented us were out of our league. We could carve like a champ inside and outside with the intermediate boards (you're right.. our technique could probably use some tweaking), but carving to the inside with the longer board was much harder. That is why the length of the board is my biggest concern. I don't want him to have a short board that will limit him or take some fun out of snowboarding. I also don't want him to have a board that is so long it is out of his league. He will have more fun taking slopes at an average pace and occasionally doing beginner grinds or jumps. His girlfriend is a great boarder, so I am sure she will help him with his technique.
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Old 11-17-2008, 09:08 PM   #9 (permalink)
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It's always harder to have your back down the slope. That usually takes longer to get comfortable with. The first time I fell down I stopped the fall with my head. Took me 20 minutes to regain my balance so I could walk down. My day was over.

That reminds me, maybe you should buy him a helmet.
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Old 11-17-2008, 09:12 PM   #10 (permalink)
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a shorter board doesn't necessarily mean it's more for beginners and a longer board doesn't necessarily mean it's more advanced than a shorter one. longer boards are more for riding powder and all-mountain while shorter boards are more for park/freestyle riding and jibbing. shorter boards would respond better to prodding during turns but don't hold up as well at speed or landing jumps. they are much easier to throw around though, speaking from experience. i used to rent out 156's (i weigh 130) and it was like trying to turn a big hunk of wood around. i now own a 152 and the difference is night and day. if your bro wants to gradually get into park riding, hitting kickers, and still be able to do all-mountain, i'd recommend getting a stiffer freestyle board. look into capita. they're low-priced but great quality boards and won't hold him back when transitioning from beginner to intermediate. you can probably find last year's stairmaster brand new for like $170 shipped somewhere.
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