Snowboarding is more than just a winter sport, it’s an experience, a journey in itself. Getting on that board atop of a high snow-ridden mountain and then jumping on the waves of frosty snowflakes, hurtling down the slopes at several dozen kilometres per hour is nothing if not exhilarating. No wonder snowboarding is usually referred to as an ‘extreme’ sport.
A lot goes into the act of boarding, balance, skills, technique, practice, concentration and only then do you get to the equipment that’s needed. You may think that a good snowboard is the first thing you need to consider, and to a certain point, you would be right. A good board can make a world of difference, but your first pick when spending money on quality equipment should be the proper clothing.
We are talking about huge speeds in cold wet conditions that’s a recipe for a myriad of diseases at best and severe hypothermia at worst, so it’s crucial that you layer up with the proper items of clothing in order to not only protect yourself but also feel comfortable while snowboarding. To that end, let’s go through some basic pieces of snowy attire, starting from a snow jacket, all the way to snow goggles and beyond!
When it comes to snow jackets, you know you’re looking for warmth, comfort and style. Snowboarding jackets come in two different types – insulated and shell jackets. Each person is different, some of us get cold very quickly, others tend to sweat a lot and be perpetually hot. Depending on your body temperature regulating ability, you will go for the one or the other kind.
The insulating snow jacket traps more heat, making it better for those who get cold easier and a nightmare for those who sweat a lot. The shell jacket guards you against the wind, yet still allows for breathing, making it great for the hot ones and not so much for the cold crowd. To see what I mean, let’s discuss the two types in detail so that you can find your perfect snow jacket.
The insulated jacket includes an outer layer that is waterproof and windproof and an insulating layer that is woven directly into the jacket. The inner layer is most often made of fleece or a synthetic fabric such as Primaloft. The amount of insulation in these jackets is most commonly measured in grams, with a bigger number indicating a warmer snow coat. These are great for people who are colder by nature.
Shell jackets are windproof, waterproof jackets, but they have no internal insulation, which makes them highly breathable. There are many reasons why many people prefer non-insulated jackets and one of them is that these people get easily warmed up. The second reason is that the fabric shell jackets are made of is a lot more flexible, allowing for a greater range of motion. And since they are usually worn over other layered pieces of clothing, they don’t have to be bulky. A shell jacket can be worn on its own on warmer days or with layers on colder days. However, I would not recommend you wearing one in extreme cold temperatures for an extended time.
When it comes to pants, you can’t go wrong with GORE-TEX® winter gear materials. If you’re going to spend most of your snowboarding trip sitting on your bum and on your knees, you will need good insulation and waterproof materials. You might want to consider a pair of pants that connect to the jacket, also known as the popular bibs style. A good pair of snow pants also has convenient pockets on the sides, vents and other features to prevent snow from entering your boots.
Gloves are also quintessential. They provide your palms with warmth while keeping the moisture away. Seeing as how your hands will be in frequent contact with snow, you want those features to be present. The best gloves on the market use GORE-TEX® material. Thicker gloves are always more recommended, mainly because thin gloves don’t have much isolation. High-quality snowboarding gloves are lined with leather, which not only provides isolation but also drastically increases your gripping capabilities.
In order to get on a snowboard, you will need to strap yourself in with the binding system, which you can’t very well do without snowboarding boots. Snowboard boots are made primarily to attach you to the board, but also to keep your feet warm, dry and safe from the surrounding environment. The perfect boots should fit snugly, but not to the point where they cause you pain.
Snow socks can make a huge difference in your comfort and performance. Snowboarding socks are made of synthetic materials and merino wool, which keeps you warm and wards off moisture from your feet. The combination of polypropylene and wool makes for excellent insulator that keeps your feet dry and warm. Cotton socks should be avoided as they do not wick moisture away from your feet, which can lead to frostbites.
Beginners in this sport will oftentimes struggle with control, so protecting their heads is key. Most ski resorts rent helmets, but if you choose to buy your own snow helmet, make sure it fits well before making any purchase.
Goggles help you battle glare from the sun and protect your eyes from both snow and wind alike. When snowboarding or skiing, snow and other debris can often fly against your face, which can be a burden if your eyes aren’t well protected. Most goggles attach to the helmet, contributing to a more comfortable fit.
If you’ve had fun in the snow be it throwing snowballs with your friends
Known as a bon vivant, Edward doesn't just amaze people with his passion for life's luxuries but also with his vast interests and talent as a writer; not surprisingly his motto is: "If you want to have limitless inspiration for writing, you have to live life first!". Whether it's all-things car related or travel adventures, he tackles with each and every topic, including those that have to do with arts, industries, tech gadgets, business and, believe it or not, love and romance!