Skiing vs Snowboarding – A Beginner’s Guide

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Skiing or snowboarding?

Which is more dangerous, which is easier to learn, is there a difference in the equipment costs, and how do these two sports view one another?

There’s a lot of questions to get through, so let’s take a look and see if skiing or snowboarding is right for you.

Skiing vs Snowboarding

It has been estimated that there are over 135 million skiers in the world, and we’ve seen claims suggesting that snowboarders number around 125 million.

Of course, it’s hard to put an exact number on something like that, as you need to think about the pros as well as the amateurs; the occasional sports fans and the dedicated enthusiasts.

However, the statistics we found suggest that the two are equally popular, with skiers having the edge over snowboarders at the global level.

Is it Easier to Ski or Snowboard?

It’s often said that snowboarding is harder to learn and easier to master while skiing is easier to learn but harder to master.

It’s a generalization, and it likely won’t be true for everyone (learning to snowboard should be a lot easier if you have experience with other board sports, for instance), but it’s true for most people.

Learning to ski can feel more intuitive.

Your legs are separated and this gives you more control.

You can also use the two poles to stay stable and ensure that you remain in control.

With snowboarding, your feet are attached to the snowboard and in a straight line, requiring more balance and control.

You also lose some of your peripheral vision when compared to skiing.

When you learn to ski, the first few steps are much easier and you shouldn’t lose control very often.

When you learn to snowboard, the act of staying upright is a challenge in itself.

Which is More Expensive?

The price of lessons and tickets are very similar in both snowboarding and skiing.

The equipment costs, however, can vary.

With snowboarding, you only really need to think about thesnowboard, bindings, and snowboard boots, although it helps to get quality base layers and outerwear as well, just to make sure you stay warm and dry on the slopes.

Is Skiing More Dangerous Than Snowboarding?

Skiing, snowboarding, and all extreme sports are dangerous if you are not adequately prepared and trained.

However, research suggests that injuries are more common with snowboarding but serious accidents are more common with skiing.

Snowboarders often suffer ankle and wrist injuries as they use their hands to stop themselves when they fall and often turn or break their ankles when they go over.

Head injuries are also common as many snowboarders (including beginners) refuse to wear helmets, deeming them “uncool”.

ACL tears are some of the most common injuries seen in skiers as they are more likely to hyperextend.

To reduce your chance of injury when snowboarding and skiing, you should wear protective gear at all times.

You can also work on improving your fitness, in addition to your leg and glute strength.

With the right gear, improved balanced, and superior lower body strength, your risk of injury is greatly reduced when skiing or snowboarding.

Why do Skiers Hate Snowboarders?

Surfing and paddle boarding; skateboarding and BMX; motorbikes and quads; cyclists and drivers.

Although these people share the same waters, roads, and tracks, they often hate each other.

But nowhere is that hatred more intense than with skiers and snowboarding.

Skiers often complain that snowboarders are obnoxious, and you’ll hear snowboarders saying the same thing about skiers.

In truth, most skiers and snowboarders are perfectly polite and understanding, and while there are some obnoxious ones out there, the same could be said for all sports.

The real issue stems from the fact that inexperienced snowboarders may get in the way, causing collisions.

In the past, generational differences have also played a past.

A couple of decades ago, most skiers were older and more experienced whereas snowboarders were often younger riders trying to emulate the pros.

This caused a lot of rifts, and it has left a mark on both sides, but the demographic lines have blurred somewhat over the years and you’ll find all ages taking up skiing and snowboarding these days.

Summary: Skiing vs Snowboarding

As you can see, there are a lot of differences between skiing and snowboarding.

One may be easier to learn while the other is easier to master.

There is also a lot of history between the two.

But whether you ski or snowboard, whether you’re a novice or a pro, both of these sports are great fun.

If you enjoy winter sports and are keen to try something new, there’s no reason why it shouldn’t be snowboarding and skiing, as opposed to snowboarding or skiing.