What Size Snowboard Should I Get?
How do you pick the correct snowboard length? The length of your snowboard will vary depending on your body weight and the type of riding you plan to do. Back in the day, traditional snowboard sizing meant you stand next to the snowboard and if the top hits your chin, great, it fits! While that may be a good place to start, things like ability level, weight, and construction of the board are also important factors in determining the appropriate board length. So, for example, if you are going to be mostly freeriding consider getting a slightly longer board for more stability and speed, unless you’re looking at a volume shifted board. If it's a freestyle snowboard you are looking for, consider smaller sizes that will be easier to spin and maneuver in the terrain park or half-pipe.
Additionally, consider the following factors when deciding on a snowboard size:
- If you're riding primarily in the park or freestyle, pick a board on the shorter end of the size range.
- If you're riding is mostly all mountain, powder or freeriding, consider a snowboard on the longer end of the size range or grabbing a volume shifted board.
- If you are above average weight consider a longer snowboard.
- If you are a beginner, aim for a shorter board in your size range.
Snowboard Sizing Chart
|Rider Height (ft)||Rider Height (cm)||Rider Weight (lb)||Snowboard Size|
How Wide Should my Snowboard Be?
When a snowboard waist width is sized correctly the snowboard boots will hang over the edges of the snowboard just slightly but not so much as to hit the snow when the board is on edge (see the images below). Extending the toes and heels slightly over the edges of the snowboard allows you to apply leverage to the board and modulate pressure with your ankles. If your boots extend too far over the edge, they’ll hit the snow during hard turns and cause you to fall. To determine the proper snowboard waist width for your snowboard boot size view the chart below.
Snowboard Width & Boot Size Chart
|Boot Size (US Men's)||Boot Size (US Women's)||Board Waist Width (mm)||Snowboard Width|
|-||Up to 6.0||225 - 235||Narrow / Women's|
|5.0 - 7.5||6.0 - 8.5||236 - 245|
|7.0 - 9.5||8.0 - 10.5||246 - 250||Regular|
|8.5 - 10.5||10+||251 - 254|
|9.5 - 11.5||-||255 - 259||Mid- Wide to Wide|
Snowboard boot sizes vary by manufacturer and even by model within a single manufacturer's line, so the outer sole of manufacturer A's size 11 might be slightly longer than the outer sole of manufacturer B's size 11. Similarly, some boots are specifically built with a low profile. The shorter outsoles of a low profile boot allow a rider to ride a narrower snowboard. Additionally, the ramp angle on snowboard bindings partially determines how large of a boot you can put on a particular snowboard - more ramp angle means a boot will sit higher and fit on a narrower board.
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What Type of Snowboard Should I Get?
What type of terrain will you be riding in? What is your ability level? What is your own personal preference? While you can ride any type of snowboard on any terrain, many boards are designed for you to get the most out of your session. It's easy to get lost in the plethora of options, so checking out this basic breakdown of board styles will help you find a board that works for you.
All-mountain snowboards are designed to work well in all snow conditions and terrain. They are at home on groomers, powder, park runs or almost anything in between, and are notorious for their versatility. If you’re just getting started or are unsure of exactly what you need, an all-mountain snowboard is a great choice.
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Powder snowboards live for the deep stuff. They're designed to make the most of fresh conditions and usually have a wider nose and a tapered narrower tail. The binding inserts, which determine the rider's stance, are often set back on a powder snowboard, for flotation and steering with your back foot. Powder snowboards often feature generous rocker, a design element where the tip (and tail) rise starts farther back on the board, which also helps the rider float and pivot easily.
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Freestyle/ Park Snowboards
Freestyle or park snowboards tend to be a bit shorter in length and love terrain parks, rails, jibs, trash cans, tree trunks, riding switch (non-dominant foot forward), wall rides and more. Freestyle boards often feature a true twin or asymmetrical shape, and are typically selected by those looking to ride the terrain park. A more versatile variant of a freestyle board is the all-mountain freestyle, which combines the versatility of an all mountain snowboard with the playfulness of a freestyle snowboard
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Snowboards by Ability Level
What is your ability level? There are snowboards designed for every ability level, each addressing specific rider needs. Flex, shape, length, construction, materials, design, and intended use are all important when crafting a snowboard for a particular ability level. Be realistic in assessing your own ability when researching and selecting a new snowboard. Finding the right snowboard for your personal attributes, including your ability will help make your riding experience more enjoyable and help speed your progression.
There are many shapes floating around the snowboard world these days. While some snowboards will work nearly anywhere, there are a variety of shapes that are dialed in for making the most out of specific conditions. Check out our snowboard shape guide for more information!
Snowboard Shape Guide
Brands are consistently evolving and experimenting with their boards and offer new profiles nearly every year. Which profile you choose is entirely up to your personal preference and many people have different boards for the different types of riding they will do. For more information, check out our rocker guide.
The amount a snowboard flexes varies significantly between boards. Snowboard flex ratings are not necessarily standardized across the industry, so a "medium" flex may vary from brand to brand. Many manufacturers will give a number rating ranging from 1-10, 1 being softest and 10 being stiffest. Here at evo we have standardized the manufacturers' number ratings as a feel rating ranging from soft to very stiff.
Softer flexing snowboards (typically freestyle and some all mountain snowboards) are going to be more forgiving and easier to turn. A soft flex is good for beginners, riders with lower body weights and park riders. Soft snowboards tend to be a bit looser at higher speeds but can also provide a soft buttery feel at slower speeds.
Stiffer flexing snowboards are usually built for freeride or backcountry use. They provide better edge hold and are more stable at high speeds. Stiff boards can be great for riders laying down high speed turns but tough for lightweight riders to flex properly.
Sintered Snowboard Base vs Extruded Base
Extruded snowboard bases are made from polyethylene (often called P-Tex). The term extruded refers to the process of heating and forming the material into sheets in the manufacturing process. Extruded P-Tex is relatively inexpensive. These bases do not hold wax as well as sintered bases, and so they can be slower than a well-tuned sintered base. However, an extruded base can perform better than an unwaxed sintered base and are very durable.
Sintered snowboard bases are designed for super-fast glide. Like extruded bases, sintered bases are made from polyethylene (P-Tex). But unlike extruded bases, sintered bases are produced by compressing tiny pellets of polyethylene rather than melting and pushing it out in a sheet. Sintered bases are very porous and absorb wax well. When waxed and maintained properly, they are much faster than extruded bases. Often additional materials such as Gallium, graphite or Indium are added to the bases to provide increased impact resistance, durability and glide. Sintered bases are typically more expensive and can be more difficult to repair than extruded bases.
Snowboard Hole Patterns and Binding Compatability
There are four different snowboard hole patterns that you will find on conventional snowboards. The patterns include: 4x4, 2x4, Burton 3D and Burton Channel. 3D and Channel technology are specific to Burton Snowboards, although some board makers have begun licensing Channel technology from Burton. 2x4 is a variation of 4x4 that gives the rider more mounting options.
A while back the world of snowboarding was graced with a universal disc. These days most bindings come stocked with this piece and will allow you to attach almost any pair of bindings to any board. Always check to see if the binding you're purchasing come with a universal disc or a mini disc, if you have an older 4x4 board a mini disc won't work with your board. Check our binding guide to ensure you're getting a setup that works for you.