Snowboarding Essentials

Snowboarding Glossary

A
Aerials  Air maneuvers.
Angle of Attack  The angle used in relation to the fall line when riding across the hill. A shallow angle is mostly across the hill while a steep angle is mostly downhill.
Avalanche transceiver  A radio transmitter/receiver worn by riders in avalanche terrain to aid rescuers in locating buried avalanche victims.
B
Backcountry  An area used for snow activities away from the groomed runs and lifts of a resort.
Bail  A metal piece used to fasten hard boots to their bindings.
Base  The bottom of a snowboard.
Bevel  The process of filing a slight groove into the base or side edge of a board to tune its performance.
Big Air  A big jump where you 'catch big air'. Big air contests involve, well, jumping.
Bindings  The devices used to attach your feet to the board.
Boardercross  A snowboard obstacle-course racing competition.
Boning out  To straighten one or both legs during a jump for extra style.
Bonking  To hit the tip or tail of your board on an object while in the air.
Booting out  The act of falling over due while edging to your boots or bindings hanging over the edges of your board.
Boots  Worn on your feet to keep them warm and dry. Also used for transfering the movements from your legs to your board.
Bumps  Raised areas in the terrain. Also referred to as moguls.
C
Caballerial  Trick jumping 360 degrees and landing in your original stance.
Camber  The upper arch built into the base of your board which is most visible when placed on the ground. Used primarily for weight distribution and providing stability.
Cap  The method of board construction where the topsheet of the board extends over the edges.
Carve  Advanced snowboarding maneuver involving riding on the edge of the board, using the board's sidecut to turn while cutting a thin trail through the snow.
Catching Air  Jumping with a snowboard is sometimes refered to as 'catching air'.
Chute  A narrow strip of snow surrounded by cliffs and rocks.
Corduroy  Mechanically groomed surfaced usually used for practicing new manuevers or carving.
Corn Snow  Thawed snow which has refrozen.
Cornice  Snow packed by wind to form a steep face and overhanging tip.
Crampons  Sharp metal cleats attached to the bottom of boots which aid in climbing ice or hard snow.
Crud  Tracked out powder.
D
Downhill Edge  The edge of your board which isn't digging into the snow when it is placed across the hill.
Dryslope  Artificial slopes created for snowboarding or skiing.
E
Edge Angle  The angle at which the board is tilted on its edge.
Edge Change  The motion of rolling smoothly from one edge to the other during a turn.
Edges  The sharp and smooth edges of your board made from steel strips.
F
Face Plant  Falling face first into the snow. Usually happens when your toe edge gets caught in the snow.
Fall Line  The path directly down the hill.
Flex  The amount a board can bend as well as where it can bend.
Forward Lean  The angle at which the highback of a soft-boot binding leans towards the toe edge.
Freeride  Snowboarding style which involves riding through a variety of terrain, trails and snow conditions.
Freestyle  Snowboarding style which involves acrobatic tricks, jumps and spins in specially constructed parks and terrains.
G
Garland  Half or partial turns performed without a change of edge.
Giant Slalom  A competition where riders navigate around a series of poles in a set route. The term 'Giant' is used because the events usually have longer turns and higher speeds than normal slalom events.
Goofy  Riding with the right foot as the prefered front foot.
Gortex  Waterproof fabric usually used in the construction of outer snow clothing.
Grab  The act of grabbing the edge of your board usually performed as part of an aerial freestyle move. Grabbing your board can be done with either hand and on either edge.
Gradient  The measure of the steepness of a slope.
Groomed  Snow which has been prepared for riders using snow cats or other machinery.
Ground School  The place with a flat or gentle grade slope for beginners to practice key fundamental maneuvers.
H
Halfpipe  A U-shapped ramp built in the snow for performing freestyle aerial maneuvers.
Handplant  A handstand on a halfpipe using one or both hands.
 
Heel Edge  The edge of your board under your heel.
Heel Side  A turn made using the heel edge.
Highback  The back of soft-boot bindings which extend upwards behind your lower legs.
Huckfest  A peer-pressure driven session of hucking.
Hucking  To recklessly launch yourself off huge jumps with little regard for your safety.
I
Ice  Compacted and frozen snow.
Indy  Grabbing the toe edge of the board between the feet using the back hand.
Inserts  The holes in a snowboard used for attaching or adjusting the position of the bindings.
Invert  A trick jump where the rider is upside down.
J
Jib  Sliding on rails or other platforms with the snowboard.
L
Leash  A strap or cord which is attached to your board at one end and your front foot at the other to prevent your board from sliding away from you.
Lip  The top edge of a half- or quarterpipe.
M
Moguls  Bumps, mounds and valleys which impede riders.
N
Nollie  An ollie performed by jumping off the board's nose.
Nose  The upturned front end of a snowboard. Also known as the tip.
O
Off-piste  Areas outside of the marked areas and trails of the snow resort.
Ollie  A leap into the air on flat land without the benefit of a jump.
P
Piste  Marked areas and trails patroled by the snow resort.
Plate Bindings  Bindings for hard boots.
Powder  Fresh soft snow usually prefered by beginners.
Q
Quarterpipe  A single wall (as opposed to two walls for the halfpipe) used for freestyle maneuvers.
R
Regular  Riding with the left foot as the prefered front foot.
S
Sidecut  The curve cut into the sides of your board which help you to turn.
Sideslip  A technique used for sliding or skidding down the hill with the board straight across the fall line by adjusting the angle of edging.
Sidewall  The material on the sides of a snowboard used to protect and keep the internal layers in place.
Skating  The act of moving around on flat surfaces with only the front foot attached to the board by pushing with the free rear foot.
Sketch  Having your snowboard slide out from beneath you after a turn or jump.
Skidding  Moving sideways or forward by working with the edges of your board across the snow to control your speed.
Slalom  A competition where riders race by turning around gates in a set route.
Slam  A heavy duty fall caused by catching either your toe or heel edge in the snow.
Snurfer  The snowboard's predecessor. Built in the 1960s for snow surfing, they would mark the beginning of snowboard construction and engineering.
Spinal Tap  The heel edge equivalent of a face plant where you fall hard on your back after catching your heel edge.
Stance Angle  The angle of of your bindings on your snowboard.
Stomp Pad  A pad placed with an adhesive just in front of the rear foot on the snowboard to provide traction to a free rear foot when skating or gliding off chairlifts.
Switch  Performing a trick while riding backwards/fakie.
T
Tail  The back end of a snowboard.
Tail slide  Lifting the nose of the board and sliding on the tail while on the ground.
Terrain Park  An area specially constructed for freestyle riders to perform their tricks, jumps and spins.
Tip  The upturned front end of a snowboard. Also known as the nose.
Toe Edge  The edge of your board under your toes.
Toe Side  A turn made using the toe edge.
Topsheet  The top layer used in the construction of a snowboard.
Traverse  A maneuver for moving diagonally across the fall line.
Twin Tip  A snowboard with an identical nose/tip and tail usually used by freestyle riders for riding in both directions.
V
Vertical  The vertical sections of the wall of a halfpipe.
W
Wall  The transition and vertical sides of a halfpipe.
Wax  Lubricant used for the base of snowboards to allow smoother and faster riding.
Wipe out  A spectacular fall.
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