Snowboards - Ski Equipment

Snowboards - Ski and Snowboarding Equipment

A board is measured in centimeters and to make it a little more confusing, the first digit is often omitted. So a board measuring 158 would be 58 in snowboard speak. Children's boards can be as short as 100cm and long race or powder boards can go up to 180cm. For a women's size 7.5 foot, a good width is somewhere around 242mm. The majority of women will want to stick with a snowboard waist width of less than 250mm (25cm).

Compare the board to your height for the right length. If you hold the snowboard on its end a short board will come up somewhere between your collar bones and chin. Shorter boards are easier to maneuver and because of theis are often the prefered choice for beginners.

The medium board length is one that is more for all round intermediate to advanced riders who would use it for a variety of terrain including parks and steeps and these would come up between your chin and nose if standing on its end.

Longer snowboards go from eye-level to several inches over the top of the head. They are for deep powder, high-speed carving and bigger slopes. The lighter riders would need boards with a softer flex and those heavier would need one with a stiffer flex. Women and small-footed men need narrow snowboards; big-footed guys need wide boards. If you are standing in riding position, your boots should be close to or slightly over the edges of your board.


Once you have bought your snowboard it will then need to be waxed regularly to keep the base running smoothly. The board is porous. You will have to apply a fresh coat of hot wax and the best routine would involve waxing after eight hours or so use, depending on how cold it is - waxing more if the weather is warmer. The base of the board should be cleaned with a base cleaner before you wax it. Keep your eye on the base and wax if it looks especially dry. A good all temperature one will suffice under most conditions used with a smaller sized scraper as these generally work better. An iron will be needed to heat up your wax and whilst a dedicated iron can be bought you could use a household one as long as it isn't a steam iron.

When you heat the wax on the iron it should not reach the 'smoking' point. With its pointed side turned down, hold the iron at right angles to the board and start to press the wax bar against the hot iron. when the wax is hot enough and begines to melt drip it on to the board and move it up and down. Do this until you have stripes of wax 1 or 2 inches apart.

Iron in all the wax until the board is completely covered making sure to keep moving or the you could damage the board.

Once you have stopped waxing and turned off the iron for at least 20 minutes you can start scraping. Once you have covered the base in wax you need to scrape it off in a nose to tail motion. As the board is porous you should scrape away the wax as it will have already entered the pores and too much wax will slow you down.

After scraping the wax off you should use the rough green side of a washing up sponge once again using the top to bottom motion. This will take off the residue of the remaining wax.

Alternatively, by visiting your resort's ski hire shop you could just pay someone else to do it.