Buying your own snowboard can be a daunting task as there are literally hundreds of different models out there. Because we are owned and run by a small team of snowboarders we are able to get out on the snow and test loads of boards and then buy the ones that we like and that we think you'd like too!
All the boards we stock are hand picked, but not all will be suitable for you so we'll try and make it a little easier for you by pointing you in the right direction about what type of things you should be looking for.
There's lots of important factors to consider including:
This question gets a whole range of weird and random responses when we ask people in the shop. If you are self taught and have snowboarded for just one afternoon on a hill in the UK when we have had an inch of snow then we wouldn't necessarily categorize you as an expert rider and so we wouldn't try and sell you an advanced super responsive snowboard.
Snowboards that are designed for beginners are typically torsionally softer, less responsive and way more forgiving than a snowboard that is packed full of fibreglass and carbon. A snowboard will react to the input that it receives from the rider. If you are an advanced rider who has years of experience then you will be able to micro-adjust the amount of movement you put into the board which will then in turn make the board move in the way you expect. A more advanced and responsive snowboard will give you a super precise ride... great for experienced riders but not so great for learning.
If you are new to snowboarding and buy an advanced snowboard you will find it a harder to ride and it may put you off snowboarding for life (and we don't want that). Buy an entry level snowboard or maybe an intermediate snowboard and you will get the basics of snowboarding down in next to no time.
Before we go into different models of snowboard that may be suitable its probably best to run through what a snowboard is made from as it will help you make your choice. Basically they have a plastic base (often referred to as PTEX), metal edges, a wooden core and layers of fiberglass.
The plastic base allows the snowboard to glide on the snow and depending on what grade of plastic is used, what extra ingredients are added, and how the base is manufactured and finished you will experience different amounts of friction and glide.
To give the snowboard it's torsion it has layers of fibre glass (and sometimes carbon). Essentially the more fiberglass and carbon the more responsive the snowboard. Entry level snowboards will have 2 layers of fiberglass (referred to as Biax) and will be torsionally forgiving. More advanced snowboard will have 3 (Triax) or more layers of fiberglass and sometimes stringers or carbon which will make them torsionally stiffer and more responsive.
Snowboard Manufacturers will then create the snowboard in a certain profile (or bend) from Rocker to Camber which again will affect its ride. Rocker snowboards (also known as Reverse Camber, Banana or V Rocker) are widely thought to be a little easier to ride and more playful. Camber Snowboards are a little harder to ride but naturally more poppy. Hybrid Snowboards (also known as Cam-Rock or Flying V) sit somewhere in between the two as you get the playfulness of a rocker mixed with the type of edge control and pop you get in a cambered snowboard.
[**It was only a few years ago that regular Cambered Snowboards were the only snowboards available. Loads of people (including myself) have learned on these so don't necessarily be put off by these when choosing**]
You choose the size of snowboard based upon your weight, but essentially, most snowboards have size charts that are based upon how much you weigh. That's why it's important to choose your snowboard first and then get the correct size in this particular snowboard. In regards to whether or not you need a wide snowboard, typically a standard width snowboard is good up to about an UK10 and a wide snowboard is better for UK10.5 and bigger. This obviously depends on the make and model of snowboard boots so give us a call if you are unsure.
We have a range of snowboards to sort most budgets. 'Beginner' snowboards tend to be cheaper as they usually have less added ingredients inside (like carbon etc) so they are cheaper to produce. If you're a more experienced rider and you want a more responsive board with a faster base then be prepared to spend a little more.
There are loads graphics to choose from on the market, and although buying a board that you like the look of is important, it's a better idea to focus on whether the board is suitable to you first. Lots of snowboards have a 'die-cut' base meaning that the plastic underneath is actually inserted onto the base from separate sheets of plastics (normally 2 colours) and these will give the base a different graphic.
To limit wastage, the opposite colours in the base layout will be in another board somewhere and this type of die-cut is called a 'flip-flop' graphic. Jones Snowboards are big fans of this base type. If you're fussy in the exact colouring of a base then maybe give us a call first as sometimes we have both options available.
Burton use 'The Channel' on the majority of their snowboards as the interface to mount snowboarding bindings. The Majority of current snowboard bindings on the market today work with The Channel but you may need conversion discs. Please give us a call if you are unsure what Snowboard Bindings you need. (All Burton Bindings work with The Channel without purchasing additional discs).
[**'The Channel' is also referred to as 'Infinite Channel System' or 'ICS'**]
So, that has hopefully cleared things up a little. There are plenty of snowboards currently in stock so if you need any more help then please drop is an email or give us a call - 01252 612223. Take a look our full range of snowboards. If you need more help on choosing your next snowboard then