Are you stuck in the middle when it comes to snowboard sizing?
Trust me, I’ve been there!
Choosing the right snowboard can be a challenge, especially with graphics swaying your decision (guilty as charged).
So let’s dive into the actual difference between men’s and women’s snowboards.
The main difference between men’s and women’s snowboards is the size and flex. Women’s snowboards are generally designed with smaller dimensions, a softer flex and a narrower waist width. This is better suited to lighter or smaller riders.
Want a little more detail? Keep reading.
Flex plays a crucial role in snowboard performance. Especially when choosing a snowboard for buttering or freestyle.
Women’s snowboards generally feature a slightly softer flex. This offers enhanced maneuverability, making it easier to initiate turns and pop.
Stiffer flex options (often found in men’s boards) can be overpowering for smaller, lighter riders.
Women’s snowboards often have a narrower waist width compared to men’s boards. This accommodates the typically smaller boot sizes of female riders.
Men’s boards have a wider waist width to accommodate larger boot sizes and provide stability.
Generally speaking, women’s snowboards are shorter to maintain control and agility. This is well-suited to their typically lighter frames.
Length ultimately comes down to height and weight. This matters much more than gender.
The most accurate way to decipher your length is via our snowboard length calculator.
Graphics on women’s and men’s snowboards usually cater to different preferences.
In the past, these would be painfully stereotypical (semi-naked babes for the Men, flowers for the Women).
Nowadays, there’s a little more crossover between the two.
5. Build Quality
Sadly, men’s boards previously received the vast majority of the design and technology budget.
Men therefore benefited from exciting new tech, premium materials and innovative new shapes.
In recent years, Women’s boards are catching up!
But there’s still a slight tendency for Women’s boards to be on the cheaper end of the spectrum.
Once corporations got their hooks into snowboarding, marketing jargon flooded the industry. This made it super difficult to separate the fact from the fiction.
Generally speaking, Women’s snowboards are highlighted for their versatility, comfort, and graphics. Men’s boards are marketed for their speed, power, and aggressive riding capabilities.
In reality, they are a lot more similar (as are men’s and women’s riding styles and preferences).
Are Snowboards Unisex?
Despite brands offering specific male and female product lines, there is no inherent gender restriction on who can ride a particular snowboard. Height, weight, ability and riding preference and far more important than gender.
You’re therefore free to choose whatever board you like!
I’ve listed some of the best boards of the year below.
Can Women Ride Men’s Snowboards?
Absolutely! When staying within their correct height and weight range, Women can ride men’s snowboards without any issues.
While there are some differences between the two, it ultimately comes down to personal preference.
Finding a board that suits your riding style and abilities takes some time. Go ahead and ride whichever snowboard feels right for you, whether it’s a women’s, men’s or even kids.
Can Men Ride Women’s Snowboards?
I’ve written about this in more detail here.
Can Women Use Men’s Snowboard Bindings?
Yes, women can use men’s snowboard bindings if they find them to be a better fit or more comfortable.
While there are bindings designed specifically for women (with narrower baseplates and smaller sizes) women can just as easily use men’s bindings.
Try out a bunch of different bindings. Particularly models from the more popular snowboard brands. Finding the right fit with your boots is just as important as the choice of binding.
There you have it.
Basically, snowboard gear isn’t gender specific. Yes there are a few common differences, but sizing and personal preference are far more important.
Go with what feels right and what fits the best.
Got a question?
Let me know in the comments.