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getting pads

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I read somewhere about getting pads, hip, wrist and maybe elbow before trying to learn boarding. Is this real or over the top? Is the tailbone pad like the football hip wrap or something special to boarding? A google shows a lot of stuff for sale but at $50-100 per item it's going to add up fast. What do you think is a good idea?
post #2 of 13
I broke my tailbone learning to snowboard. Looking at the padded shorts for boarding in the stores, they don't look thick enough to do anything. I don't know anything about football equip - might be a good match i fyou already have it. I got the inch thick heavy foam kneeling pads they sell in the gardening department and stuff them in the back of my pants (about $10). (Actually, I stack two, but that way lies paranoia.)

I've never felt anything else was particularly at risk, so don't use any other protective gear (except a helmet).

But then I don't use any protective gear rollerblading either, but I know someone who broke both wrists. If you tend to try to catch yourself on your hands, the gloves with built-in wrist supports might be a good idea.

Edit - I didnt have any pads when I broke my tailbone.
post #3 of 13
You can find cheap inline skating style wrist guards on ebay which will help save your wrists from constantly bracing your fall when you catch that toe side edge.

Tailbone pads would be helpful for catching that heel side edge.....A company called Skeletools makes fairly cheap padded shorts that should fit the bill as well. Similar stuff can be found by Dainese, sixonesix, and a few others, but Skeletools is usually the cheapest.

also, another option could be Aegix clothing ( Aegix pants have pads (hip, tailbone, and knee) integrated directly into them. Their A1 pants are currently on sale, but still a more expensive option than padded shorts.
post #4 of 13

Wrist supports are a good idea and not terribly expensive---the rest I don't see a big need for.

I think THE most important thing to do when trying to learn to snowbaord is to enlist a qualified AASI instructor.

I did that back a few years ago and was able to learn the basics without a lot of falling on my wrists and the like.

If you already have waterproof pants, thats a plus. Get an instructor and go for it.
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
My dirt bike jacket has shoulder, back and elbow pads built in so mayve I'll wear that over a sweater.
post #6 of 13
Originally Posted by skier_j View Post
I know some of those have extra padding - but I don't think that's Ryel what had in mind.
post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 
depends on the run?

bad, bad
post #8 of 13
The most popular tail bone protector for snowboards is the Red impact shorts (ok I made up the "most popular" thing for something else to say besides BURTON owns R.E.D. and that's what they sell). Bohn has a product called buttsaver. Tailsaver is another product for tail bone protection. I wouldn't worry about elbow pads, but knee pads might be a good idea for hard snow days. You won't fall on your hips enough while learning to board to worry about hip pads as a separate thing. In all of my years of teaching I've had one student who seriously hurt their tail bone in my lesson, but they had already fallen hard on it going out before they took the lesson. You can learn to ride without busting your butt, butt it does happen.

With respect to wrist guards, there are different opinions. With the high bevels on beginner boards, slams are much less frequent. So equipment choice/rental availability should be a factor in your decision. Modern teaching methods have also greatly reduced the amount of falling in beginner lessons (my opinion and experience - I have no facts to back this up). My opinion is that it doesn't hurt to wear wrist guards to get started, but that you should not learn to rely on them. You don't have to have wrist guards to learn to ride, but it does not hurt to wear them. Wrist injuries are the most common snowboard injury and beginners have more than their fair share of these injuries. I work with my beginners to teach them to fall on their forearms and keep their speed down so they don't get enough momentum to slam hard enough to injure their wrists (whether they come to my lessons with guards or not). I have not had a student hurt their wrists bad enough to need medical help in all my years of teaching riding, but I have had many complain about their wrists being sore after falling hard. If you're going to go with a wrist guard, the fabric ones are easier to fit under gloves but provide less protection, some gloves offer built in wrist guards and some gloves will (and some gloves won't) accommodate rollerblade/skateboard type guards that have a hard plastic insert for support. The plastic inserts make the guard less comfortable. You have plenty of options. Just test them out with the gloves you plan to use before you hit the slopes.

Caveat - since my lessons are only 90 minutes long. My personal experience teaching stats are not reflective of the full learning experience. Your injuries may vary.:
post #9 of 13
I will chime in with Rsty here,

being seasoned professionals, scholars, and cone heads from France...

Ever since I came acoss the prospective/newbie rocket scientist that was using pads to learn to ride miffed me! Hip/butt pads etc..well I leave that one alone. At any rate back to my point, with these supposed saftey tactics in mind..pads as we know don't always work. As was mentioned before, I guess we again can agree it's up to the consumer!
post #10 of 13
Yeah, it's expensive. You might try a a motocross backprotector. Also, try sewing extension to the straps on regular rollerblading wrist guards to put over your gloves. Make sure to pull the back protector down to cover your tail bone:

Here's a cheap one:
post #11 of 13
My equipment includes helmet, hinged knee braces (a holdover from skiing), and specifically for boarding I've added wrist protection and the afore mentioned Burton RED hip pads (last season's grey mesh model).

I *think* I cracked my tailbone last season while learning to snowboard -- it's only now getting comfortable to put pressure on -- so I purchased the hip pads in response. The Burton RED weren't my first choice; based on reviews, I'd prefer to own the Dainese but I couldn't find them locally. The RED tailbone protector is relatively small, but it does offer some modicum of protection. I've left the removeable butt pads in place, but have 86'ed the smaller thigh and groin pads.

This season's surfer-style RED shorts are certainly nicer looking, but I wonder if they are too warm to wear under insulated ski pants with (presumably) underware or (my choice) bike shorts as a "sanitation layer."

Wrist guards are a nuisance, but I feel naked without them. Now that I'm attempting some mogul runs and beginning to fall hard once again, there have been a few instances where I'm happy to be wearing them.

I don't know that the knee braces do anything for me on the board, but my knees are weak and lame and there have been instances where, literally, I could barely walk after a day of skiing without them. They do, however, offer a minimal amount of protection when I kneel down in the snow -- whether intentional or not. So I'll stick with them, just to be safe.

With the exception of the wrist guards, none of this stuff is burdomsome to me, other than when getting suited up. ****, I usually put my ski pants on at home before my three hour drive to the Tahoe area, which means an extra three hours wearing knee braces and (if I'm planning on boarding) sitting on butt pads the whole way. Whoo-hoo! snow, here I come.
post #12 of 13


I am 57, ride fairly hard and been doing so for 7 years. My big jumper 14-yr-old has been in the Burton padded shorts for years and loves them. He augments them with a small piece of foam tucked on the tailbone. THis year I picked up the BUrton boxer shorts for the days I plan to do stupid old man tricks like a rail or two. I did take a fall on ice and immediately noticed the lack of impact pain on the tail as I had forgotten I was wearing them since they are comfortable. As far as the comment that the padding does not appear to be enough to help, the idea is not the bulk but the wide distribution of impact. The pads have a hard outer surface to spread the impact.

From my reading and sense of personal experience: I prefer wrist guarded gloves that permit the wrist full flex within the wrist's normal range of motion as opposed to rigid guards. The rigid guards concentrate the pressure on the long bone increasing the chance of fracture while attempting to protect the wrist. The flexible style allows the wrist to function normally which means in most all falls the wrist can bend, absorb impact and distribute energy up over a longer long bone area safely. So in most all falls there is no need for a guard and a rigid one might actually increase the long bone fracture. But the comfortable flexible guarded glove is always ready for that one fall that wants to over exetend the wrist into the danger zone. Then and only then does it come into serious play protecting the wrist after it had a chance to do its job of absorbing impact and distributing force up the arm. I most appreciate the flex glove in the half-pipe when I do not have the feel of a rigid restraint.
Helmets are a must of course. One kid got taken off the slopes with a concussion this week and had a good helmet on! My daughter, then 14 did the same also with a good helmet on.
post #13 of 13
When I started boarding I had padded shorts, wrist guards, helmet and elbow pads. I've dropped the padded shorts and now have gloves with the wrist guards. I kept the elbow pads due to other injuries to my elbows. The padded shorts I found do not protect the corner of my pelvic bone, which is where I typically land. Are there any shorts out there with pads that come up higher? My helmet has more than paid for itself.
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