Ten Facts You Should Know
From Brandon Arnold
You've heard of it. You've seen it on TV. Maybe you've even
given it a try. Now it's time to gain a basic understanding
Here are the Top 10 Snowboarding Facts you need to know.
10 Snowboarding Facts:
1. Snowboarding originated in the U.S. in the 1960's. Early
boards were very rudimentary in design compared to the models
available today. More recent designs reflect the variety of
riding styles that have emerged within the sport. (Read more
about snowboarding's history here.)
2. There are two primary styles of snowboarding: 1) freestyle/freeride
and 2) alpine/carving. Each style requires its own specialized
set of equipment.
3. Snowboarding competitions have been taking place for approximately
20 years, and include events such as the halfpipe, boardercross,
slopestyle and parallel giant slalom.
4. In 2000, snowboarding was the fastest-growing sport in
the US (followed by skateboarding) with the number of people
who went snowboarding rising to a total of just over 7.2 million
5. Snowboarding made its Olympics debut in Nagano, Japan in
1998. It returned to the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake
City with 2 events, the halfpipe and parallel giant slalom.
6. One of snowboarding's early pioneers, Jake Burton Carpenter,
started Burton Snowboards in the late 70s. Today, Burton is
the largest manufacturer of snowboards, gear and snowboard
clothing in the world.
7. Although snowboarding takes place alongside skiing at ski
resorts, it is a totally different sport than skiing with
its own equipment and a unique sensation that can't really
be compared to skiing.
8. There are still four ski resorts in the United States that
don't allow snowboarding!
9. Snowboarding helped spark a revolution in the ski industry
by inspiring ski manufacturer's to make shorter, more maneuverable
skis with deeper sidecuts.
10. It's fun! http://snowboarding.about.com/cs/basics1/a/whatis.htm
From Brandon Arnold
The pure arc of a snowboard turn can make riders feel like
part of a hundred-year-old tradition. However, most of us
have watched snowboarding spring up before our very eyes,
and the early origins of this young sport can only be traced
back as far as the 1960's.
Sherman Poppen is most often credited with inventing the snowboard
in 1965. As the story goes, Poppen fixed two skis together
for his daughter to "surf" down the snowy hill outside
their Michigan home. Combining the words "snow"
and "surf", the new invention became the Snurfer,
and went into production the following year.
Over the next decade, early pioneers like Jake Burton, Demetrije
Milovich and Tom Sims created more specialized and refined
By the early 80's a handful of snowboard brands were on the
market, including Burton, Winterstick, Sims, Barfoot, Avalanche
The snowboard craze hit a crescendo in the mid-eighties, sweeping
through ski resorts across the US. Along with it came an early
"bad boy" image, based largely on the fact that
adolescent males (who acted exactly like adolescent males
on skis) comprised the majority of snowboarders at the time.
A rebel reputation was established and is still prevalent
today, despite snowboarding's vast appeal to men and women
of all ages.
Some ski resorts banned snowboarding during this early phase
but have since come to accept the wildly popular and still
growing winter sport. A few resorts are still holding out
against all odds, but it seems unlikely that their skier-only
policies will last. In the year 2000, snowboarding was the
fastest-growing sport in the US (followed by skateboarding)
with the number of people who went snowboarding increasing
51.2 percent from the previous year to a total of just over
7.2 million participants. Downhill skiing grew by just six
percent, with a total of 14.7 million participants. (Stats
are from the fourteenth annual American Sports Data Superstudy
of Sports Participation.)
The sport of snowboarding continues to carve its own unique
path. Throughout the 80's and 90's, competitions and events
such as halfpipe and boardercross became international staples.
In 1998, snowboarding debuted in the Olympics in Nagano, Japan
with a giant slalom and halfpipe competition, and will return
to the Olympics in 2008 in Torino, Italy with the addition
of snowboard cross.
In a short 40-year history, snowboarding has cemented itself
into the hearts and minds of enthusiasts around the world.
According to freethesnow.com, snowboarders currently make
up 25% of all winter sport participants, and that number is
sure to continue to rise.
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