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Old 04-07-2010, 10:44 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Newbie intro and questions!!

Hi guys!!

I moved from Florida to Colorado last August. This season my wife and I only were able to ski once. So much going on with moving and buying a house, we just couldn't fit skiing/boarding into our budget. It was also our first time ever skiing/boarding.

However, we are already making plans for next season. We anticipate spending tons of time on the mountain next year to learn the sport.

On our only trip this season, my wife took a ski lesson and i took a boarding lesson. My wife and 7 year old son had an awesome time. I however had a miserable day. I spent most of the lesson on my knees and butt from falling repeatedly. I actually thought i had broken my hand towards the end of the day. It was sore for nearly 2 months afterwards. On our way home i told my wife it was the most disheartening experience i've ever had and would try skiing next.

However, boarding just seems like "me" more than skiing. So i really wanna stick with it next season and i'm determined to learn. I've read and had alot of people tell me to give a couple more lessons and things will get better and things will "click". I'm determined to do that.

So my one question for now pertains to gear....particularly protection for my wrists. My wife is insisting that if i take of boarding that i get protection. I've read a few threads here about wrist guards and if they are necessary and which ones different people have tried. I just was curious if anyone has used the glove guards here Protective Snowboarding Gloves: Buy now and avoid snowboarding injuries .

I'm guessing the next couple months might be a good time to get some gear on end of season clearance. Anyone recommend some gloves/guards and where to purchase or where to keep an eye out for season clearance sales?

Thanks again and look forward to the advice and help from the experienced riders here.
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Old 04-07-2010, 03:07 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I've never felt the need for protective gear beyond a helmet in all my years of riding. I've felt that balance exercises and learning increased body awareness through core training was always more important. That being said my wife rides with Dakine Wrist guards and I have had a couple of friends that have ridden in them or the Burton Support glove if you find the wirst guard option to be a little to restrictive.

Out of curiosity where did you go take your lesson and what were the snow conditions like?
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Old 04-07-2010, 03:40 PM   #3 (permalink)
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You gotta realize it was your first time on the hill. I remember my first time, I was sooo sore that I couldn't even get close to making a fist with my hands because my forearms were so tight and fatigued from catchin my falls and pushing myself back up. Give it another good 2-3 days and you'll be able to get down the hill without falling at all. Take it slow and just learn how to use your edges, once you feel comfortable carving from you heel edge to your toe edge and vis-versa it will be a much more enjoyable experience. As for wrist guards, I guess it's personal preference..you wont need them after a couple more days of riding though..

don't give up on it after your first time though, it's tough at first but definitely gets so much better the more you progress..
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Old 04-07-2010, 05:58 PM   #4 (permalink)
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thanks for the replies.

our lone trip was at Eldora. there wasn't any fresh powder when we were there and the beginner run was really hard. very hard and uncomfortable when i fell.....which i did continuously

any Colorado locals recommend a good resort for boarding lessons?
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Old 04-07-2010, 06:13 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Any of them should be fine but here are a couple things to pre-plan on your next visit. Try to make sure your instructor is certified with AASI, and try to pre-plan your trip with decent conditions. It might be a good idea to consider a private lesson with an instructor as one on one teaching is typically always better that a group lesson. Learning on really hard snow is also really hard to do and it is important to lower your expectations on how quickly you will progress. Sometimes taking the time to progress at a snail's place is better. Learning how to roll with your fall and not coming to a complete stop is key to less pain. Of course learning how to stand and balance without falling even better. Easier said than done I know.
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Old 04-07-2010, 06:18 PM   #6 (permalink)
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thanks for the response and advice. next season when we get going, we definitely will be going on a more powder day compared to the ice we had at Eldora.

Loveland right now is looking like where we might try next year....hoping they have good instructors.

also, whens a good time to buy end of year stuff?
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Old 04-07-2010, 07:21 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I'd say learning to fall is the first (and most unpleasant) thing you learn. Stick with it though bro, it wont take long before it gets much easier.

I remember the first couple of runs I did on my second trip to the mountains it was like I'd never boarded before! I remember being pissed off thinking about all the cash I forked out just to have smashed arms & legs and a frozen ass. But after a few hours I found my "snow-legs" and the rest of the trip was so awsome I became addicted.

I would recommend wrist guards, especially at the start when your stacking the most. You might want to get your own boots as well cuz some of those dodgey rentals will cause you grief.
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Old 04-07-2010, 10:13 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Keep at it! My first time was miserable as well, but it only gets better.
For me, knee pads, and an ass pad is a must. I highly recommend them. I also used wrist guards during my first two seasons as well.
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Old 04-07-2010, 11:36 PM   #9 (permalink)
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So, a few comments...

First, snowboarding has an extremely steep learning curve. However, the plateau at which you become sufficient isn't that high-up. The trick, IMHO, to deal with the steep learning curve is to go A LOT when you are first learning. If you go infrequently, it will take you a long time to "re-learn" what you had forgotten since the last time you went. With a steep learning curve, the more persevernce you can muster at the start, the better. This will also help reduce the amount of time it takes to get over the initial learning curve hump, and get you up and running at a decent level.

The down side to this is the pain. It hurts like hell to learn how to ride. Knees, tailbone, and wrists. However, there are ways to minimize that; pads. How much gear you want to wear is really a personal preference. Look at the NFL. You see some players wearing pants with no pads in them at all. Others have much more gear on. It's just a matter of what you feel comfortable with.
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Old 04-08-2010, 10:01 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Sedition is exactly right about the learning curve for snowboarding. Usually what I tell my students and/or their parents is to get a minimum of at least three days in before ending their season and to have those three days fairly close to each other. It helps to build the muscle memory that assists in re-learning of movements for snowboarding which then leads to learning new movements that much quicker. Your family learnt skiing faster because the learning curve for that sport is faster inititially, but you choose the sport that will provide more intrinsic value in the long run. At least it did for me. So keep at it.
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