EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › General Skiing Discussion › Snowboards and Skis - choosing the right tool for the job
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Snowboards and Skis - choosing the right tool for the job

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I used to snowboard but I didn't get out much (maybe 10-20 times in total,) and I wasn't very good. 


Then I learned to ski.  I took it seriously.  Bought a seasons pass.  Took lessons.  It's only my second season and there is always more to learn but I am comfortable almost anywhere on the mountain now (including double black runs.)


The other night, I decided to dust off the snowboard (I haven't used it in years.)  The first run was a little rough but I quickly got the hang of it and by the end of the night I think I was doing the hardest stuff that I've ever done on a board (linking turns on an easy black diamond run.)  I'm sure my form was a little gross but  believe that the skiing helped a lot.  In particular I've learned the slightly unnatural habit of keeping weight downhill instead of leaning uphill and I've probably been desensitized to slope steepness.



It got me thinking about choosing the right tool for the job and the benefits of being able to do both:

1) Although an expert on skis can do anything, it seems to me that exploring some steep and constrained areas on the mountain is often easier on a board (especially when those areas have already been scraped into chutes by other boarders!)


2) A board seems like an easier way for a novice to learn about basic tricks in the terrain park.


3) Each sport seems to use different muscles and by learning to do both, you will become a more well-rounded athlete.  Closely related (and the reason I dusted off the board,) is that if you have one particular tendon/muscle that is sore or even slightly injured from one sport, you may be able to still get on the hill if you switch to the other sport.



Would anyone refute those three reasons or add any to the list?

Does anyone switch between skis and snowboard on a regular basis?

post #2 of 8

I think the perspective you laid out of being a "tool for a job" is not the right metric.

Don't think of it as a job, where you are optimizing to complete a task to gain strength or complete a trick or run or improve skill..


Whatever you're having FUN doing is what you should be optimizing for.  


As a counter example, just because you can completely dominate the bunny hill as a doubleblack expert skier, doesn't mean you should then just use skis all the time to dominate and shred up the bunny hill.  Even though you may suck on a snowboard, you may suddenly have a lot of FUN on the bunny hill falling over and over again and taking 30minutes, whereas you'd be bored with skiing that day.

post #3 of 8

Or to put it more succinctly: the right tool for the right person. (at he right moment, under the right conditions, etc.) 

post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 

Yes, those restatements are fair.


Essentially, I am saying that being able to board is almost like having another set of skis in your quiver.


The next time you think about adding another set of skis to your collection, perhaps think about adding a board instead.

post #5 of 8

It's not easier to do anything on a board except maybe terrain parks.  You lose control and versatility with a board.

post #6 of 8

I have many years under my belt doing both activities, and can cover the entire mountain (except for the bigger stuff in terrain parks) on either piece of equipment.  In terms of performing a task, the skis are more versatile since one can traverse better and manage flat terrain better.  If you're skiing or riding for fun rather than to do a job then the choice comes down to what you want from that day.  


Skis = adrenaline

Snowboard = euphoria


If you've done a lot of both then you know what I'm talking about. 

post #7 of 8

Intermediates seem to get along in powder a lot easier on a board. Stereotypically, skiers have an easier time with bumps--but I believe that's just a stereotype, as some of my boarder friends rock in bumps. 


I snowboard when going out with friends who aren't strong skiers. 

post #8 of 8
Originally Posted by Metaphor_ View Post


I snowboard when going out with friends who aren't strong skiers. 


I've been thinking about Renting a snowboard the next time I go out with a few freinds of ours that aren't very good at skiing.   I hate just bailing on them on each run and waiting at the bottom but even worse is going slowly to ski down with them.


I think on a board I'd have more fun as I'd be learning (and going about the same speed) as they are.

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