how long does it take to learn to snowboard?

How Long Does It Take To Learn To Snowboard? The Truth…

by Fraser

How long does it take to learn to snowboard? The short answer is that it depends. As much as we’d like to give you a simple answer to this question, we can’t.

It can take 1-2 weeks to learn the basics of snowboarding, however there are many variables involved. These include age, experience, fitness and your goals. If your goal is to learn more advanced snowboarding, this could take a lifetime. 

If you ask a pro snowboarder how long it took them to learn how to snowboard, they will probably tell you that they’re still learning a thing or two. 

So how long does it actually take to learn snowboarding? What helps you to learn it quicker and how quickly can you start to snowboard on your own?

I’ll answer all of this (and more) in this guide. Buckle up!

How Long Does It Take To Learn How To Snowboard?

There are several factors that will determine how quickly a rookie can learn to snowboard.

Some of them are unfortunately out of your control… but others are up to you! Let’s take a look. 

Factors Affecting How Long It Will Take You To Learn

1. Age

Your age will play a role in how quickly you’re able to pick up snowboarding.

For teenagers and adults, learning will be slightly easier, however, the biggest potential barriers faced will be things like an injury.

how long does it take to learn to snowboard?

Those under the age of 10 will struggle as they are still trying to figure out balance and co-ordination. I discussed this in detail when answering at what age can you start snowboarding?

2. Experience

Experience in other things can help people to learn how to snowboard with less difficulty.

Sports like surfing and skateboarding are very similar to snowboarding. They require similar techniques and skills – plus they are a board travelling on a surface.

Even things like ice skating, rollerblading, or skiing can help people understand how to use various parts of their body (ankles, hips, core) to direct themselves and maintain their balance. 

3. Lessons

Access to in-person lessons will greatly speed up the time it takes to learn snowboarding.

A qualified instructor will be able to share their expert knowledge and experience to help correct your form as you try to pick up the basics.

Going it alone is possible, however, you open yourself up to a greater risk of injury and developing bad habits

Seeking the help of knowledgeable friends can be good and help you to save money… but the best way to learn is with the help of a pro. In fact, a few lessons can be enough to allow you to take on basic runs on your own.

Find out how many snowboard lessons you need here. 

4. How Often You Can Snowboard

Having access to slopes and ski resorts is a key factor in how quickly you can learn to snowboard.

If you can only head to the snow once a year for a week, your progress will be a lot slower than someone who can spend an entire season mastering the sport. 

How often you can access slopes also impacts the gear you have. If you’re able to snowboard for a full season, buying your own gear will be a good idea.

This means you’ll get gear that fits you well and will give you the chance to get used to it.

Hiring gear, however, means getting used to different equipment every time you want to snowboard. This can slow your progress in learning.

5. Fitness And Injuries

As relaxing and fun as snowboarding can be, it is still a sport, which means it requires a certain level of fitness. After all, you can burn over 600 calories an hour!

Those that are fitter and have better core strength will be in a better position to learn snowboarding than those lacking similar levels of fitness or strength. 

Your core is particularly important as it helps with balance, stability, changing direction, and getting up if you fall over. It also goes without saying that if you get injured and can’t snowboard for a period of time, this will obviously slow your progress. 

6. Goals

Are you planning to be the next Shaun White?

Or simply make it down the mountain alive?

Your snowboarding goal will determine how quickly you can learn the sport. If you simply want to focus on the basics, you can learn relatively quickly – perhaps even in a day!

Whereas if you’re hoping to become an expert, this will obviously take you much longer to achieve!

So when figuring out long it will take you to learn, you need to keep your goals in mind. 

As you can see, there are quite a few factors that will affect your progress and your ability to learn how to snowboard.

For those looking to learn quickly, here are our top tips to learn how to snowboard as quickly as possible.

Three Top Tips For Learning To Snowboard Quickly

1. Invest In Lessons

As we’ve touched on already, getting lessons is one of the quickest ways to learn how to snowboard. With a few 2-3 hour sessions over a few days, you can learn everything that you need to know to start taking on basic runs by yourself. With the help of a qualified instructor, you can get off on the right foot and fast-track your progress.

2. Set A Clear Goal

Having a clear goal will help you to pick things up with greater speed. For example, if want to learn the basics such as how to fall, the falling leaf, J-turns, gliding, and getting on and off the ski lift, you can master most of these in a few short lessons. 

If you’re looking to take on jumps and other more advanced aspects of the sport, you’ll know that you need more time and focus.

3. Commit

Lastly, the more you commit to learning, the quicker your progress will be. Committing means more time spent on the slopes, investing in gear, and giving yourself time to properly practice and hone your skills. As with anything, the more you commit to it, the better the results will be.

Can I Learn To Snowboard In A Day?

Technically yes. With a good teacher and a bit of patience, you can learn enough in a day to begin to snowboard on your own.

However, you certainly can’t become a pro.

This all boils down to what your definition of having “learned to snowboard” means. 

I’m 15-years into my snowboarding career and still learning something new each season. Admittedly landing a new “first” comes around less regularly… but I’m certainly still learning. 

How Long Does It Take To Become An Expert Snowboarder?

calendar showing january 2021

This all boils down to the famous 10,000 hour rule

The principle is that it takes 10,000 hours to become an expert… or 3.5 years of snowboarding 8-hours a day, every day. Achievable? Possibly not. 

Check out the article linked above for the full details. 

Conclusion

Depending on your goals, you may be surprised to hear that you can learn how to snowboard rather quickly!

Becoming an advanced snowboarder though will certainly take some more time.

The most important thing is giving yourself enough time to practice and giving yourself credit each time you nail a new skill.

Don’t forget to be patient and have fun – everyone learns at their pace and you will get there at some point.

Good luck! 

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