So, you’re thinking about getting your kids snowboarding – or they’ve decided they want to learn to snowboard, …what comes next?
Anyone that snowboards knows how much fun it is; and this should be the most important thing to remember when introducing kids to snowboarding. Fun, fun and oh yeah, FUN!
Don’t stress about how far they progress and their technique at first; your aim initially is to get them sliding, smiling and building good, positive links with being in the snow – hopefully setting them up with a passion for riding for years to come.
So you’re keen, the kids are keen, what things do you need to consider?:
When to start?
As toddlers? Aged 3 or 4 or 5? 6 or 7 or 8 and over? At the start, middle or end of winter?
The age children can and should begin snowboarding is continually debated. Getting started then, there are lots of things to think about – following your child’s lead and putting aside preconceptions are just two of them! And what are the differences in teaching a child a winter sport when it’s bitterly cold and when it’s hot with slushy snow?
Where to go?
Ski Resort or Indoor slope? Beginner area or patch of snow? Rope tow, travelator, chairlift?
There are lots of variables here, bear in mind that some ski resorts are better set-up for kids to learn than others. Some have easy and/or free lifts and/or free lift passes for young kids, some have excellent beginner slopes and/or snowboard schools, some not. UK indoor and outdoor slopes can be great but often have age restrictions.
Read more in our Resort Guide section
How to & With Who?
In an instructor led lesson? With parent power?! Using a harness? Or in a Riglet park with a Riglet reel?
Different snowboard schools and instructors will accept children from differing ages. Burton Riglet Parks and reels are a great innovation for teaching very young kids snowboarding, sadly currently the parks are few and far between. Parents are essential in helping their kids learn to ride – there are lots of techniques, advice and equipment that can help you get on track…
What do you need?
A 80cm, 90cm, 100cm or bigger sized board? Hire or buy? Are rocker, camber, flat or hybrid boards better for kids? Where can you find small boots? Helmets & other protection? What types of winter clothing?
Kitting your kids out for the winter can be a minefield! And having the right equipment can make or break a day on the slopes for the kids and you! But is it worth spending the money? Can you source quality hire equipment?