Snowboarding is an awesome sport in general, but the jumping and tricks are where the real fun is. Before you start learning snowboard tricks, it is a must that you feel completely comfortable on your board. Having all the basics mastered first is a pre-requisite. You need to have your balance established, be able to carve, stay in control, know your surroundings, but most importantly be able to stop when you need to quickly. Unfortunately to say, unless you ride everyday accomplishing the fundamentals of snowboarding may require the whole season. This will all depend on your learning ability and who you ride with. If you ride with friends who are better than you, it will almost force you to get better sooner just so you can keep up. This being said, don’t push yourself too far too soon because you are more likely to injure yourself which could possibly end your season prematurely. You will know when you are ready for certain things, but on the other hand don’t always play it too safe because that too will keep you from progressing. Again, just have fun but stay safe.
The first techniques you should become familiar with is performing an ollie and landing. Once you have these down, the rest will soon follow. If you do not know some of these terms, refer to the glossary on my website for the definitions.
How to Ollie –
1. As you are moving forward on your snowboard, crouch down over your board.
2. Pull front foot up and put weight on the boards tail to utilize the springing action.
3. Hop off your back foot while lifting back leg.
4. Pull knees towards your chest as high as possible, level the snowboard once in the air.
5. Straighten legs as you start to land and place both feet on ground as same time, keeping knees slightly bent to absorb the impact.
How to Land a Jump –
1. Start with a small jump that has a slight incline for the landing area.
2. Squat just a little as you get to the jump like you do when you ollie. Ollie off the jump to give you more height and distance.
3. Look where you want to land and attempt to keep the board straight/level with the ground.
4. Bend your knees when landing to soften the impact. Keep practicing until you can ride away from every landing without wiping out.
These are two of the very first things you should learn and become familiar with after accomplishing the fundamentals of snowboarding. Make sure you can perform an ollie and land a jump before attempting any other more advanced tricks.