Every snowboarder wants to enjoy their time on the slopes as possible, and with this in mind, it’s worth preparing for the unforeseen circumstances that could leave you injured. While it is true that safety gear is often expensive, we at RideEasy believe in helping you get the best out of yourself as a snowboarder. Long-term injuries are not going to help this! Whether you’re just starting or you’re a seasoned snowboarder, this article is for you.
Whether it’s your first day on the slope or you’re a professional snowboarder, some safety precautions should never be compromised, and in snowboarding, this is the one. According to a U.S. report on skiing and snowboarding injuries, 44% of head injuries in adults, and 53% of head injuries in under 15-year-olds are “potentially preventable” through a safety helmet. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3989528/)
And if you’re worried that helmets will affect your ability to navigate the slopes, don’t be. Research conducted by Johns Hopkins University showed that helmets do not impact hearing or vision enough to influence riding and that they do not cause injuries when you fall. In fact, your helmet can actually increase your performance on the slopes by holding your goggles in place, and by keeping your head warm!
At first glance, you may think that getting a padded jacket is being over cautious, and it’s true that the USD$ 299 makes it no cheap item of clothing. However, if you are someone who sees yourself snowboarding season after season, you may consider this a worthwhile investment.
This jacket offers some of the best full body protection out there, with The Good Ride claiming it’s the best one they’ve found for snowboarding (https://vimeo.com/145936596).
It has D30 pads that are secured in pockets all over the jacket, and these pads remain comfortable to wear through different conditions.
As snowboard instructor Bart Eykmans, who wore the jacket for around 140 days in the 2015/16 season, explains: “It stays flexible at all temperatures I got exposed to! That’s from -18°C with a cold North Wind in full winter until +20°C on the warm and slushy end of season days!”
This is possible because the pads incorporate a technology that uses your body heat to retain flexibility.
Move without limitations
Another great aspect of the Xion Long Sleeve Jacket Freeride is that it isn’t bulky to move in.
The instructor Bart Eykmans states that there was no mark on his body after he wore it for 140 days. The jacket also has the
additional value of enabling you to take parts of the padding out if and when you need, so that you can wear the amount of fabric you want.
These amazing attributes have resulted in the jacket being used not just for snowboarding, but other extreme athletes like movie stunt performers. Click this link to watch it in action.
As a beginner or if you’re new to the park, you may want to consider getting some protection for your tailbone and butt. The Demon Flex Force X D30 offers the same D30 technology as Xion (i.e., flexible pads that are hard when they take impact), and they are great because they are not cumbersome to wear.
Although they cost USD$54.00, you will be glad to have them when you are falling on hard snow/ice, and they can also be crucial for you to regain your confidence if you’ve recently suffered an injury. As one snowboardingprofiles.com writer who suffered a tailbone injury mentions, since starting to wear the Demon Flex Force X D30, “I have noticed that I have my confidence back over jumps.”
To see an analysis of the Demon Flex Force, check out this link:
As I’m sure you know, the first reaction for you when you fall on your back is to put your arms out behind yourself to catch your fall. This can lead you to twist your wrists in awkward positions.
There are different ways in which you can help prepare for this. You can strengthen your wrists through exercises – check out this link for a recommended snowboard fitness routine: https://www.rideeasy.co/snowboard-fitness-routine/
However, buying a pair of wrist guards is something you’re bound to appreciate at times, especially if you’re new to the sport.
A great design for you to go for is the Soared Skating Impact Wrist Guards.
The padded palms of these wrist guards not only help to offer a durable construction, the velcro straps enable you to adjust the size of the guard so you can wear gloves underneath.
Your knee is one of the places in your body with the least amount of flesh protecting it. Although it’s less likely than falling backwards, the prospect of falling on your knees on ice is a nasty one. With this in mind, if you’re a beginner or someone who falls forwards rather than backwards, knee pads can be a great investment.
One of the main drawbacks with knee pads is that with many designs, they often slip down and off your knee while you’re riding, which can be frustrating.
However, with this in mind, a great design to go for is 661’s Kyle Strait kneepads. The center strap around the lower thigh and the upper calf strap sitting above the calf muscle should prevent it from slipping down, so you can focus on your snowboarding with your safety covered. See link here: https://7protection.com/us/product/flex-knee/
Letting your leg dangle on the chairlift for long periods will likely leave you with a piercing pain in your knee/ leg by the time you reach the top, and other methods to prevent this, such as letting your foot rest on your back foot, can damage your boots.
Having experienced this ourselves, we came up with a solution called the RideEasy Line. A durable, lightweight and portable option, it will help you ride higher and for longer. What’s more, the device also works as a board lock that’s installed onto your binding, so that by locking it you can rest assured your board is always safe and sound.
We hope this guide has helped give you a better idea of how to stay safe while you snowboard, and that you’ll be able to snowboard better and for longer as a result!
See you on the slopes! – Adrian.