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The 5 Best Beginner Snowboards
If you’ve just decided you’re going to learn how to snowboard, the first thing you need to do is find the best beginner snowboard. Whether you have decided to take up a new hobby, attend a school trip, or just went out with a few friends, the next step is to gear up and find the best beginner snowboard available on the market. Keep reading for beginner snowboard reviews and ratings.
You may have heard of other snowboard types such as freeride snowboards and powder snowboards, but if it’s going to be your first time going snowboarding, you need a beginner snowboard. Choosing the top beginner snowboard is not an easy task. There is an endless number of beginner snowboards available with an infinite number of options and there is no one-size-fits-all approach. To find the best beginner snowboard, you must understand the options and what features to search for. Continue reading to learn more about the top five best beginner snowboards available now.
In This Article
The Burton Ripcord Snowboard with Directional Shape and Flex is the best beginner snowboard because it’s a lightweight board that is easy for inexperienced snowboarders to control.
As one of the biggest titans of the snowboarding world, Burton has legendary gear because they have been around since the invention of the sport. As a result, they produce killer beginner snowboards to help you take your skills to the next level.
Featuring a camber/rocker combination with an outside early rise, the Burton Ripcord Snowboard assists with turn initiation without a catch. The nose-to-tail taper is around 5 mm, so your board nose will be wider than the tail for improved turn entry and exit. Also, the board flex is consistent from front to back, which is perfect for the basket stance. Situated slightly to the back-center, the Clash board delivers regular riding.
- Very lightweight
- Has excellent pop and enough flexibility for a beginner
- Well-designed and easy to control
- Covered by Burton’s three-year warranty
- Edges chip easily
- Average material usage
The Ride Machete 2018 Snowboard with Fusion 4000 Base is the best beginner snowboard because it’s lightweight but sturdy and has a twin rocker for extra snap.
One of the best beginner snowboard options on the market is the Ride Machete Snowboard, which receives consistent love from riders every year. Ride has left the design untouched because the functionality is superb. While the design is made to rip groomed runs, the board will never get left behind regardless of where you end up.
Featuring Carbon Slimrods, which run partially through the snowboard, this powerful board pops and helps you take off down the slopes. The flat deck was designed to roll from turn-to-turn and is easily controllable. Like most other beginner boards, the Machete has a twin tip rocker design but still has a tame and mellow response that won’t throw you to the ground when making a mistake, making it perfect for beginners.
- Twin rocker provides extra snap
- Performance Tuned Core results in a lightweight and sturdy board
- Pop Rods 1.0 Core for smooth landings
- Carbon Array 3 Laminates provide control and balance
- Too stiff for some riders
The K2 Standard Snowboard 2019 with 2000 Extruded Base is the best beginner snowboard because its lightweight design helps make learning new maneuvers easier for beginners.
As one of my personal favorites, the K2 Standard Snowboard is an impressive balance of ease, grace, and power. By purchasing this beginner snowboard, you will have a classic look mixed with excellent performance. One of the goals of this snowboard is to simplify your first carves when learning the skills needed to up your game on the slopes. The board features a flat rocker with early rise tip and tail to allow carving, switching, and rolling the board to be simple.
Featuring a flat profile, this board is quick and playful during use. The K2 Standard also boasts a directional twin which allows you to ride the board comfortably in either direction. Overall, this board has an easy attitude with a mild temperament that will quickly advance your learning from standing up to more advanced techniques and terrain.
- Nice board flexibility to limit speed for beginners
- Lightweight so it is ideal to train with and learn new maneuvers
- Well-balance and provides a center of stability
- Not the most durable board available
The Rossignol Templar Snowboard with FSC Certified Wood 6420 Core is the best beginner snowboard because it has unique serrated edges that help improve the board’s edge grip.
While the Templar Snowboard falls in the middle of the skill level, it is still one of the best beginner snowboard options available. This is due to its advanced features like serrated edges to improve upon edge grip and a 6/9 stiffness rating. Rossignol focuses on improving the edge grip by improving the overall board design.
Since this board is good for multiple levels, it allows you to start and advance without needing to switch snowboards. Once mastered, you will have significantly more control and power at extreme speeds and in demanding situations where a soft board will not meet the challenge.
- FSC certified wood, so you know where your board comes from
- Serrated edges to improve edge grip
- It can start as a beginner and move to the next level without buying a new board
- Initially a difficult learning curve with this board
The SALOMON Sight Snowboard with Aspen Strong Core is the best beginner snowboard because it’s a well-balanced board that doesn’t need any extra preparation after purchase to be ready for boarding.
As another powerhouse in mountain snow sports, Salomon’s gear is constructed from top-quality materials to meet top quality standards and is ready to shred right out of the box. For this reason, the Salomon Sight Snowboard is an excellent choice for easy entry into the sport.
Featuring a soft flex that is easy to guide into turns, The Sight Snowboard boasts a rocker/camber/rocker configuration which is best for trail or all-mountain conditions. The board features a directional flex to allow for stability and power and is excellent for all styles of snowboarding. While you may wish to switch to a more advanced board in the future, when just starting, this is an excellent beginner snowboard.
- Ideal for ollies and other jumps
- Well-balance board for improved stability
- Ready to go right out of the box
- A great option for trail or all-mountain conditions
- It doesn’t hold an edge well at higher speeds
- It can be difficult to maneuver
Features to Consider for the Best Beginner Snowboard
Reading beginner snowboard reviews is important, but there’s a lot more to consider before picking out your first board. To find the best snowboard, it is crucial to understand its primary features. These include:
Two types of snowboard bases exist: extruded and sintered, and each of which has positives and negatives. Extruded bases tend to be slower, which is perfect for a beginner, and sintered bases glide much faster. Also, an extruded base is much easier to maintain than a sintered base because it does not need to be waxed as often. Additionally, the cost to manufacture an extruded base is considerably less than a sintered base, which lowers the cost of the snowboard.
The camber, flex, and size are three of the most important features to consider when purchasing the best beginner snowboard because new riders need stability, ease-of-turn, and a non-catch edge. The camber profile impacts stability and ease of catching the edge, with the best profiles to improve these areas being the flat-to-rocker, and hybrid camber. The hybrid camber has a stable camber underfoot and the flat-to-rocker boasts a flat section underfoot. For edge catching, the hybrid camber and flat-to-rocker boast rocker sections at the tip and tail.
As equally important as the camber profile is the board flex. The ideal beginner board flex is soft or medium-soft. A flex on the softer side allows for easier manipulation and maneuvering, especially at slower speeds. Stiff flex gives you more stability at high speeds, but this not what a beginner initially needs. Stiffer boards are also much more difficult to turn which results in more energy required and exhaustion on your body. More importantly as a beginner, if you need more effort to turn the board, it will be more difficult to learn the correct turning technique.
Although the ideal beginner board flex is soft or medium-soft, I recommend shifting toward medium-soft instead of a soft flex, especially for icy conditions. If the board flex is too soft, then it will be problematic for edge-hold. Medium-soft provides a nice balance between maneuverability and progress, thus allowing you to grow into the board as you advanced to steeper slopes.
Purchasing an unsuitably sized snowboard can have a major impact on functionality as a beginner snowboard. Even if the camber profile and flex work perfectly together, an incorrect size is not ideal for learning and moving to the next level. If you use a longer board, it will be more difficult to control and turn. Whereas, if you use a shorter board, there is less stability, and the board feels unstable and twitchy. Beginner boards must be sized down slightly (approximately 3-5cm) from the standard length.
Since you will not initially be aware of the length of time your snowboard career will last, you may be concerned with spending a lot of money on an entry-level board that you may not use frequently. This is completely understandable. The good news is even the best beginner snowboards are less expensive than other boards. This is because manufacturers know that beginners are less willing to spend a lot of money on a board and it is less expensive to construct lower softer flexing snowboards and those with extruded bases.
Benefits of Using Beginner Snowboards
Riders who do not have a lot of experience on the slopes but are looking to improve upon their skills should buy their beginner snowboard instead of renting. When I bought my first board, I wasn’t sure about how they were designed for different experience levels. In turn, this hindered the advancement of my skills and learned. There are three main benefits to using a beginner snowboard, including:
Purchase a beginner snowboard provides consistency in your ride. When you rent a snowboard, you are unlikely to use the same board every time, so the features are going to differ. However, when you buy your own beginner snowboard, you learn how the board reacts under different conditions and in different situations, as well as its limitations and what maneuvers you can safely perform.
Once you get to know your beginner board, your overall confidence will follow. You start to trust your snowboard and can push your riding to the next level. This same level of confidence cannot be achieved through rentals.
Also, beginner snowboards are specially constructed for progressive riders who wish to improve at a faster rate. With most beginner boards boasting a softer flex that is more forgiving, you can try new maneuvers. Constructed from durable materials, beginner boards can withstand all types of punishment.
Precautions of Using Beginner Snowboards
As a beginner snowboarder, it is important to have as much knowledge about safety as possible before going to snowboard or ski resorts. Since you will be using a beginner board with a softer flex and good stability, you will learn to stay on your feet quicker. However, it is important to understand the precautions when using a beginner snowboard. These include:
Never Go Alone
Always stay with the group, instructor, or experienced friend. If you are alone and suffer from an injury, you risk hypothermia or worse if you are unable to seek help immediately. As a beginner, you will not be able to get down the mountain as fast as a seasoned veteran.
Use Proper Technique
Before jumping right onto the slope, learn how to use your beginner snowboard with lessons from a seasoned instructor and experienced riders. Even if you have been a few times in the past, a refresher course never hurts even more advanced riders.
Wear Protective Equipment
The most critical piece of protective gear is the helmet so make sure it is designed for snowboarding and is not a bicycle accessory. Helmets reduce the severity of head and traumatic brain injuries. Also wear elbow and knee pads, fitted boots, goggles, specialized snowboard boots, snowboard bindings, and wrist guards. Always make sure all equipment fits properly!
Wear Warm Clothing
Losing track of time and not paying attention to the cold temperature while shooting down the slopes is easy when you’re having fun. However, being outside in the cold for extended periods without the proper apparel can lead to frostbite or hypothermia. Warm clothing designed for snowboarding can help your body maintain an equilibrium temperature.
Drum roll please—of these five best beginner snowboard models, the winner is the Burton Ripcord Snowboard with Directional Shape and Flex. Constructed by the masters of the snowboarding world, the Ripcord has a lightweight and well-designed construct that makes the board easy-to-control.
When riding, there is enough pop for a novice and enough flexibility for a beginner, which makes it an excellent board to start and take to the next level. Best of all, the Ripcord is backed by Burton’s famous three-year warranty. While all these boards are excellent options, Burton’s Ripcord is the best beginner snowboard due to the high-quality design, experience in creating beginner snowboards, and the overall performance of the board.
I hope these beginner snowboard reviews have helped you pick out your first board!