You’re probably reading this article because you’re either considering taking up snowboarding or have a trip booked but aren’t sure what you need. Either way, we’re here to answer your questions while making sure that you stay not only safe but also warm and comfortable. The following list of essentials should answer the question, “what do you need to snowboard?” perfectly. So read on to find out how to be prepared for your time on the slopes.
Equipment is an obvious answer, but we would like to go into detail about the snowboarding equipment you’ll need so that you know exactly how to prepare for your winter holiday.
You can either buy a snowboard or rent one from the resort you’re staying. Because there are different snowboard types, you may need to do some research or ask for recommendations when choosing between alpine, freeride, or freestyle boards. Beginners usually prefer freestyle boards because they’re not only shorter but also easier to control.
Snowboard bindings are used to secure your feet to the board and come in various sizes. Make sure that these fit your snow boots and are compatible with your snowboard.
Some consider gear such as helmets optional, but these are of the utmost importance to ensure that your time snowboarding is not only fun but also safe.
While all snowboarders require helmets, this is especially important for beginners possibly struggling with balance and control. All resorts emphasize the importance of protection in case of falls, so if you forget to pack or buy a helmet, you can always rent one.
Whether it’s protection from flying snow and debris or battling glare, goggles are an important piece of snowboarding safety gear. Look out for goggles that are UV resistant, and fit well around your eyes and your helmet.
Guards and Pads
There’s nothing like an injury to ruin your snowboarding holiday. If you’re new to the sport, falling may be more common than staying up at first. In order to stay safe, you can make use of wrist guards, knee pads, and butt pads. Some individuals even use stomp pads when getting off the lift.
Safety isn’t just for you – it also extends to your snowboard. Snowboard locks can be useful when leaving your boards unattended while taking breaks for food and drinks.
Clothing and Accessories
When asking the question, “What do you need to snowboard?” most people expect suggestions for equipment, not clothing. However, clothing is equally important because snowboarding can stop being a fun experience and turn into a wet, miserable one if you’re not adequately dressed.
Base Layers and Mid Layers
Base layers like long underwear or thermal tops and tights are essential in keeping warm in chilly weather. Replace cotton with wool or synthetical material to ensure your clothing is both waterproof and breathable. It’s also important to note that all base layers should be moisture-wicking.
Mid layers are the cushioning between base layers and outer layers like your snow pants and snow jacket. These are adjustable and can be added or removed given the severity of the weather and can consist of everything from sweatshirts to fleeces and jumpers.
The ideal snow jacket will have a windproof and waterproof outer shell while still remaining breathable. With all the layers you’ll have on, it’s important to remain insulated while still allowing sweat to escape. Additionally, as altitude changes, so does the temperature – clothing that takes this into account will be the most comfortable to wear while snowboarding.
Like snow jackets, snow pants also need to be breathable and weather-proof. In case of any falls or contact with snow, these will prevent your pants from getting wet and uncomfortable.
When you’re snowboarding, waterproof socks are essential to prevent cold, wet feet. Snowboarding socks should be moisture-wicking to account for your feet sweating and should be high enough so that your skin isn’t in direct contact with your snow boots since this can result in irritation.
Neck gaiters and warmers protect you against the wind and snow when you’re racing down the slopes. If a neck warmer isn’t enough, you can protect your entire face with a balaclava.
Beanies and other warm hats are a perfect way to regular your body temperature. Use them under your helmet, or when you’re taking your helmet off in between snowboarding.
Snowboard boots are designed to use bindings to connect you to your board. While you can rent them at the same time as your snowboard, most people prefer to buy these to prioritize comfort. Snowboard boots conform to the individual’s feet, and thus, sizing can vary from person to person.
Make sure that your snow boots fit well for a comfortable snowboarding experience – they should be snug but shouldn’t be too tight and restrict movement.
Insulated and waterproof gloves are also snowboarding necessities. While some gloves come with specialized features, the most important thing to focus on is insulation and protecting your hands from the harsh weather.
Miscellaneous Other Stuff for Snowboarding
These snowboarding essentials don’t immediately come to mind when making a list, but are often useful.
When people think of winter, sunscreen isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. However, while sunscreen is important throughout the year, but the sun is more damaging at higher altitudes.
Because there’s nothing like snowboarding for the first time, many people take cameras and GoPros to capture their adventures on tape.
Altitude Sickness Medication
First-time snowboarders may not realize how much the high altitude can affect their bodies. This necessitates keeping altitude sickness medication on hand.
Our Final Thoughts
Snowboarding is an exciting experience, but you need to be prepared in order to make the best of it. We hope that this comprehensive list answers your question, “what do you need to snowboard?” and helps you when you’re packing for your winter holiday.