Slowing down allows you to progress faster, learn new skills, and avoid catching edges. When riding on narrow tracks with little room to maneuver, you'll need to know how to slow down and stop, and when you progress to jumps and tricks, you will need this same technique or method to be able to scrub off some speed.
This technique involves a lot of upper and lower body separation and counter-rotation, and it's a great stepping stone to learning a lot of other snowboard moves. This fundamental technique is also used in shifties, board slides, powder slashes, and tweaking out grabs, to name a few...!
To get your board to stop, turn it 90 degrees to the slope of the hill so that the tip and tail of the board face perfectly across the hill. You must also apply pressure through the board's edge. The edges grip the snow and push some of it down the hill. This is what causes you to lag.
You can get the board to 90 degrees by simply turning it, but this will cause you to continue traveling down the hill. This can be an issue if you're trying to stop amongst a crowd, such as at the bottom of a lift where crowds can form.
Instead of performing a standard turn, you must be able to rotate it 90 degrees without moving it across the hill.
The key here is to use counter rotation to move the board around.
This move can be done on either the toe or heel edge of your board, but we'll start with the heel edge because it's the easiest and most useful.
|How to slow down and stop on a snowboard
Understanding the Basics of Slowing Down
To become proficient in slowing down on a snowboard, it's crucial to grasp the fundamental principles that govern your snowboard's movements. By understanding these principles, you'll be able to effectively control your speed and maintain stability while enjoying your ride. Here are two key aspects to consider:
Balance and Weight Distribution
Achieving and maintaining proper balance on your snowboard is essential for controlling your speed. To slow down effectively, you need to shift your weight towards your back foot. This action applies pressure on the tail of the snowboard, creating resistance against the snow and reducing your momentum. By keeping your weight evenly distributed between both feet, you'll maintain stability and control as you slow down.
Engaging your edges is a critical skill for controlling speed and maintaining stability on a snowboard. By tilting your snowboard onto its edges, you increase the friction between the board and the snow, creating resistance that slows your speed. Here are two primary edging techniques to master:
a. Toe Edge: To engage your toe edge, lean forward slightly and apply pressure on the toes of your front foot while keeping your back foot flat on the board. This action causes the edge of your snowboard to dig into the snow, generating resistance and reducing your speed.
b. Heel Edge: Engaging your heel edge involves shifting your weight backward and applying pressure on the heels of your back foot while keeping your front foot flat. By doing so, the heel edge of your snowboard bites into the snow, creating resistance and slowing your speed.
Tips for Slowing Down Effectively on snowboard
Now that you have a good understanding of the basics, let's delve into some effective techniques for slowing down on a snowboard. These techniques will help you control your speed and maintain stability while enjoying your ride:
The Falling Leaf Technique
The falling leaf technique is a fundamental skill that allows you to traverse the slope in a controlled manner while reducing speed. Follow these steps to execute the falling leaf technique:
- a. Start by traversing across the slope on your heel edge, with your snowboard pointing diagonally downhill.
- b. Shift your weight to your front foot while keeping your knees slightly bent.
- c. Gradually rotate your upper body and shoulders to face uphill, initiating a gentle turn.
- d. Transfer your weight to your back foot and rotate your board to face uphill, transitioning to your toe edge.
- e. Repeat this motion, shifting your weight and alternating between your heel and toe edges.
- f. By zigzagging across the slope, you create resistance against the snow, effectively slowing down your speed.
The Side Slip Technique
The side slip technique is an excellent method for controlling your speed while descending the slope. It allows you to maintain a consistent speed and direction while keeping your snowboard perpendicular to the fall line. Here's how to perform a side slip:
- a. Position yourself sideways on the slope with your snowboard perpendicular to the fall line.
- b. Bend your knees and keep your upper body relaxed and facing downhill.
- c. Apply gentle pressure on your edges to maintain control and control your descent.
- d. To slow down, increase the pressure on your edges, which will create more resistance against the snow.
- e. To speed up, decrease the pressure on your edges while maintaining a balanced stance.
- f. By adjusting the pressure on your edges, you can regulate your speed and maintain stability while descending.
Carving turns not only allow you to control your speed but also add a dynamic and stylish element to your riding. By utilizing your edges and body movements, you can slow down while carving through the snow. Follow these steps to perform carving turns:
- a. Start by initiating a turn by leaning your body slightly in the direction you want to go.
- b. Apply pressure to your front foot while engaging your edges to initiate the carve.
- c. As you progress through the turn, gradually increase the pressure on your edges, allowing the snowboard to dig into the snow and create more resistance.
- d. Control the radius of your turn by adjusting the amount of pressure applied to your edges.
- e. By actively carving through each turn, you will naturally slow down and maintain control of your speed.
Tips to stop effectively on snowboard
Stopping is an essential skill that every snowboarder must acquire to ensure their safety and the safety of others on the mountain. Let's explore a few techniques in detail to help you stop effectively and confidently:
The Toe Edge Stop
The toe edge stop is a reliable technique that allows you to bring your snowboard to a halt gracefully. Here's how to execute it:
- a. Gradually shift your weight forward by bending your knees slightly and leaning your upper body slightly downhill.
- b. Dig your toes into the snow by pressing the toes of your front foot down while keeping your back foot flat on the snowboard.
- c. Apply gentle pressure to engage the edge of your snowboard and create friction against the snow.
- d. Simultaneously, lean back slightly to engage your tail and increase the stopping power.
- e. As you slow down, gradually release the pressure on your toes and bring your board to a complete stop.
The Heel Edge Stop
The heel edge stop is another effective technique that allows you to control your speed and come to a smooth stop. Follow these steps to perform it correctly:
- a. Shift your weight backward by bending your knees and leaning your upper body slightly uphill.
- b. Apply pressure on your heels by pressing the heels of your back foot down while keeping your front foot flat on the board.
- c. Use your back foot as a pivot point to initiate the stopping motion.
- d. Lean back slightly to engage the tail of the snowboard and increase the resistance against the snow.
- e. Gradually release the pressure on your heels and bring your snowboard to a complete stop.
Once you have mastered the individual toe edge and heel edge stops, you can progress to combining them to enhance your stopping abilities. By seamlessly transitioning between the toe and heel edge stops, you'll have more control over your speed and stopping distance.
- a. Begin with a toe edge stop and gradually release the pressure on your toes.
- b. As your speed decreases, shift your weight to your heels and initiate a heel edge stop.
- c. Continue alternating between toe and heel edge stops until you come to a complete stop.
- d. This combination stop allows you to adapt to different slope conditions and stop efficiently in various situations.