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The Great Debate #1 - beginner boards

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
I've been reading Cindy Kleh's "Snowboarding Skills" book. For a mere AASI level 1, I'm astonished at the quality of this book. There are number of points that I'm going to steal for my lessons. There are also a few points, I'm a little suspicious of.

The first item is what kind of board is recommended for beginning riders? SS recommends a basic freestyle board. I suspect that most resort rentals are basic freeride boards. Do you know what kind of boards your resort rents? Do you have an opinion on which is better for beginners and why? SS recommends freestyle boards because they ride the same forwards and backwards, yet it also recommends a +15, +3 stance over duck for beginners. Hmmmm?
post #2 of 4
The freestyle vs freeride boards. The forwards/backwards thing is not that big of a difference between the types imo. Unless your rider has their stance dead center. The only real advantage I can see is the softer flex of a freestyle board. Designed for pop, freestyle tricks, these boards are easier to muscle around. A freeride board is going to be a bit harder to turn. I think having a board that rides the same forwards and backwards would lend to the beginner getting stuck with the "falling leaf" method of going down the hill, which of course as you know sucks...
The stance should be left more to the user. +15, 0 or +15, +3 is probably where most beginners would start. It has been such a long time since I was a beginner, it's kind of hard for me to put myself in those boots...
post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
I agree that a softer flex is more important than forward/backward. I also think that a higher base bevel (2-3 degrees vs 1) makes the board more forgiving. My resort has very soft beginner boards in the rental fleet, but the bindings are mounted as freerides (biased to the back vs exactly centered). I'm wondering how common this is.

Most of my beginners have no idea what stance angles they prefer. If I don't check them, they are liable to be riding pigeon toed for all they care. Generally I will start people out at 15, 3; but if I get any hint about pedbidextrousness (ok - I made that word up, = equally adroit with their feet) or cross dextrousness (e.g. left handed but right footed), then I usually start them duck.
post #4 of 4
when learning i think you should just get a cheap snowboard that is sized correctly. gets you on the hill quicker then if you spend time researching and saving for a nice board. then once you have the basics mastered you move up to a higher performance model (be it freestyle or freeride). if you dont learn on a piece of crap board you will never appreciate a good board. IMHO
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