5 things that can ruin your snowboarding career

You don't have to be professional to have a snowboarding career. I'd say anybody that snowboards on a regular basis and uses it as a primary hobby or activity can class themselves as a snowboarder. Just like somebody who plays sunday league can say their a footballer. 

Most of us will snowboard on a regular basis for our whole lives, and that's great. However there is an unspoken number of us out there who, due to unforseen circumstances, have had our release of freedom torn from our grips without any pre notification. Call us bitter, call us non commital, I am pretty sure there are some people out there (myself included) who simply cannot partake in their second love due to the following reasons. 

(For those who are still living the dream, please use this as a guide to prolong your dream even further, and, avoid the below for as long as possible)

1. Money

Lets face it, not all of us can afford to jump on a plane to the mountains every winter or pay extortionate prices at an indoor snowslope. Like it or hate it, snowboard is an expensive sport and which is still a primary factor as to why participation levels will never reach that of skateboarding. My advice, if you're not in the mountains go find a local dryslope which is half the cost and just as fun.

2. Injury

It's horrible, and it's inevitable you will get injured at some point during your snowboarding life. However for a select few of us it's so bad we actually have to call it a day, and I feel for you. It's a tough ask, but try and find something else which can give you the same highs as floating off a booter or first tracks in waist deep pow. Then let me know what that is.

3. You discover cycling

I've seen it a lot, and most snowboarders will use cycling as a lovely summer sport to take a break from the mountains and see them in a different light. This is fantastic, but unfortunately the lycra completely consumes some of us that we develop a case of RCS (road cyclist syndrome). This syndrome is yet to be backed by scientific research but there is plenty of articles out there on how to find a balance between the two.

4. Kids

This can apply to most aspects of life, and the more you have the harder it is to pursue your dreams. Your priorities change, and immediately these little humans require 100% of your attention and focus. There are some people that are probably reading this that think, 'well if you truly love snowboarding you will find a way to still do it', but those people don't have kids.

5. You get a job

Snowboarding is still a relatively small industry and there are some lucky people out there that can make a living out of it. But with the cost of living ever increasing, sometimes life just forces us to stop doing seasons and get behind a desk. It's so hard to keep the motivation to ride whilst your plugging numbers all day in microsoft excel, so maybe set cool screensaver, watch some snowboard videos on your break and it may torture you even more, but will hopefully keep that passion alive.

I'm not bitter, as you may have noticied some of these aspects have happened to me and physically stopped me from riding for a while. It would be easy to give up on snowboarding altogether, but it's about maintaining a passion for it without stepping on a board and one day you'll get back at it I'm sure. 


1 comment

  • This article really hits home. I’m in my mid 30’s, having snowboarded when I was younger in my early 20’s, but had to call time on it due to a knee injury. After many years my knee completely healed and last year I finally decided to dig my board out of the loft and hit the snowdome, just to see whether I could still make it down the slope, let alone pull off any tricks.

    After a few sessions at the snowdome I realised snowboarding is kind of like riding a bike, I was a bit rusty at first, but you don’t lose your ability to snowboard, the muscle memory, motions, balance, they still stay with you after all that time. I then decided to give Tamlands a go, as that is where I spent most of my time when I was younger, and I was surprised I could still boardslide, 180, etc. All pretty basic stuff, but I was really chuffed I could still land some of the old tricks I had learnt all those years back.

    I then started going to the Boobytrap sessions with John Weatherley and co. and that is pretty much when I fell back in love with boarding again. John, all the coaches, the people that train there, they are all brilliant and the whole setup is excellent for developing your freestyle skills, which is the area of snowboarding I have always enjoyed the most.

    A year later, getting back into boarding is one of the best decisions I ever made. Before I started boarding again I was just working constantly, running was my only exercise and every day just seemed to blur into the next.

    Over the last year I’ve met some great people, my boarding has progressed loads and going to the snowdome just gives me that one night a week of regular escapism and the focus I need to take my mind completely off my work, which is something I had really needed for quite some time.

    Coming back into boarding when I am older has had its advantages too. I’m really not bothered if I look like an idiot for messing up a trick and I have a lot more confidence talking to, and getting to know, the people I regularly ride with and see at the snowdome. I honestly think being a bit older, a bit wiser and my attitude towards my approach to learning new tricks has made me a better snowboarder as a result. Also, one major perk of being older is that I have more disposable income to spend on equipment compared to when I was a skint student at Uni. It is nice to finally have a decent pair of boots that aren’t being held together with gaffer tape!

    With regards to having kids, I can’t say things will be the same when my daughter is older, or if I have more kids, but myself and my wife always have our own night off once a week where one of us can do our own thing while the other one looks after my daughter for an evening. So, I still have my own little window of opportunity to get my weekly boarding fix. As soon as I have finished one session I am always looking forward to the next. Who knows, when my daughter is old enough we might end up going to the snowdome together – until she realises snowboarding with your Dad is not cool and asks me to stay at home. That is most likely the point at which I should probably hang up my snowboarding boots for good – but then again, I can live with being an embarrassing Dad, I’d much rather that than donning Lycra and taking up cycling, that’s for sure!

    So yeah, if you’re reading this and are in a similar situation, I’d personally recommend strapping on your board and hitting the slopes again. You’ll soon realise how much you really missed it…


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