The stagnant snowboarder
15 Mar, 2010
Snowboarding has always been about progressing, we’ve come to expect progress from our pro snowboarders to our snowboard equipment but what about ourselves as riders? Each year I realize that I’ve been riding longer than most of the kids in the park have been alive and this year I questioned my progress, was I really progressing or becoming a stagnant snowboarder?
I have no ambition to wreck myself in rail jams but I want to hold my own in the park and instead of skipping by 90% of the features or resulting to taking photos I wanted to be there able to ride the features just like my friends. It started last year but this year I really dove into park riding since the snowfall in Steamboat was limited.
Last year I started to ride park but each time I took to the boxes I was freaked out and now looking back on it, I kind of laugh at myself for the fear I had and how much I don’t have that fear on the easy stuff. The end result was I kind of would hit mini features but not comfortably and I wouldn’t try anything over than 50-50ing. For some reason the distance a rail off the ground is, would freak me out.
Over the summer I went to Windell’s to write about the adult camp experience and this is where the passion to ride park came to me. I just wanted to get better and being surrounded by adults that were focusing on riding park as well, helped a lot! The end result was trying more tricks, being more comfortable and putting myself into the park.
Steamboat isn’t known for parks but this year we have Nick running our terrain parks and he does an amazing job on the mountain. Now that the passion to ride park came back and myself wanting to progress more, I have fully ventured into park on a year that the powder isn’t coming down all the time. It’s been such a trip to see myself progress and ride the park, hitting the same features as friends. I might not be pulling the tricks but I’m starting to play around with them and trying harder features that push my riding. I’m also hitting ollie on features and trying to ollie on from the side which to me is definitely progress for my riding.
The best part of this is i’ve seen my own progression and I’m really happy/proud of it. I’m 26 years old and finally venturing into the park again. I want to ride park and I’m enjoying trying new tricks. When I head to other mountains, I’ll hit the features and boxes without worry.
So to the other riders out there, what are you doing to not be the stagnant snowboarder? What helps progress your riding when you’ve hit a wall on the mountain?