Ah, the classic rivalry of skiing versus snowboarding! Both activities are exceptional in their own rite, but is skiing or snowboarding more fun?
How do you even determine what makes something fun? Is there a way to measure fun?
Although there isn’t exactly a science behind it, there are certainly many factors that can affect how fun something is. Keep reading to find out the ultimate answer to the question: is skiing or snowboarding more fun!
Let’s Compare: Skiing to Snowboarding
In terms of overall popularity, skiing takes the cake. However, snowboarding has slowly grown into a massively popular winter sport as well.
Both snowboarding and skiing are considered equally cool (pun intended) and are both considered cool skills to have.
As far as trying to figure out which sport is more fun, it honestly depends. Both sports are fun in their own way; it just depends on how you’re feeling, what kind of experience you’re looking for, or even if you’re alone or with a group.
How Difficult is Snowboarding? Skiing?
Honestly, you’re going to fall a lot when you’re learning how to snowboard. While a select few pick it up extremely quickly, the vast majority spend a tough first couple of days learning.
Unless you’re used to a sideways stance from activities surfing, wakeboarding, or skateboarding, it just takes time to get used to balancing in this manner.
Pro Tip: Padded snow pants will be your best friend in the first week of learning how to snowboard. Many snowboard-specific pants have a little extra cushion around the knees and butt for this exact reason!
Wrist injuries are common amongst new snowboarders due to the natural tendency of bracing yourself with your hands during a fall. The awkward angle and addition of your body weight can result in sprained or broken wrists even during minor falls.
Lastly, some people even find that wearing knee pads helps keeps them going through the learning phase. Learning how to snowboard requires investing more time in the beginning stages to enjoy your excursions father down the road.
By comparison, skiing is more technical and meticulous than snowboarding. You’ll always find yourself trying to improve something when skiing, be it your turns or the pressure on your feet or your timing on your ankle rolls.
So if your idea of fun is challenging yourself to keep your form, skiing might be more fun for you!
If you prefer being spontaneous and trying to cut tricks, perhaps you’ll have more fun snowboarding! Of course, you can do tricks while doing either sport once you understand the basics and build up some confidence while going down the slopes.
Truth be told, it’s not the difficulty of the sport that matters, but how much you enjoy doing it.
How Comfortable is Skiing? Snowboarding?
Maybe your idea of fun is based on how comfortable you can be. If that’s the case, snowboarding is more fun because it’s more comfortable than skiing.
For starters, snowboard boots are softer and easier to walk in than ski boots. Ski boots are more rigid, making them less comfortable on the slopes as well as trying to walk in.
In addition to the boot differences, everyone will have a personal comfort preference when it comes to stance. Do you feel more comfortable standing facing straightforward, or does a sideways stance also feel good?
Once again, if you have prior experience with other sideways activities like surfing or wakeboarding, then snowboarding may feel natural.
What If I’m Not an Athlete?
If you’re concerned about your level of fitness, skiing is the better option. If you’re taking it easy, skiing doesn’t necessarily require a lot of athleticism, and it’s up to you how far you want to push yourself if you want to push yourself at all!
Using the forward-facing bipedal stance that we’re all used to from walking around certainly makes balance easier! By comparison, snowboarding requires more adjustment to get used to balancing in a sideways stance.
In addition to stance challenges, many people find getting up and down off the ground while strapped to a snowboard challenging. Because you’ll be strapping your back foot in and out of the binding when you use the lifts, being able to easily get up and down off the ground is more important than you may realize!
Another thing that many newcomers underestimate is the usefulness of ski poles! Not only can they help you keep your balance at times, but you can also use them to help propel you through flat areas.
Should you come to stop on your snowboard in a flat area, you’ll need to awkwardly hop your way along or just unstrap and walk.
When you’ve got ski poles in hand, you can simply give yourself a push and you’re off!
How to Snowboard vs. How to Ski
The saying goes that skiing takes longer to master but is easier to learn, and snowboarding is harder to learn initially.
Of course, before you can enjoy skiing or snowboarding, you’ll have to learn how to do whichever activity it is that you want to do.
Even as a beginner, first-time skiers can probably manage to stand and slide at least a little bit, even when they first start out. Snowboarding, on the other hand, takes more time to adjust to, and you might not be standing and sliding on your first few attempts.
If you’re looking to pick up one of these two activities quickly, you’re better off opting for skiing. You’re likely to be tearing up the easy slopes by the end of your first day! Snowboarding takes more balance and determination to learn how to turn, stop, and control your board.
However, most people think that once you’ve got the basics down, you’ll progress faster with snowboarding than you will with skiing. Still, both activities have their good and bad points to them, making the question of “is skiing or snowboarding more fun?” difficult to answer.
Skiing Equipment vs. Snowboarding Equipment
Unsurprisingly, the equipment used for skiing is very different from the equipment used for snowboarding. For example, it’s not as easy to carry around two poles and two skis as one snowboard, especially when you’re trying to reach the Après bar!
Still, poles come in handy when you’re skiing and need a push over the slopes’ flat parts. It’s not like you get that with a snowboard.
Not to mention it’s harder to take off after getting off a lift if you’re trying to strap yourself into a snowboard. Skiers, on the other hand, can just take off immediately.
What Kind of Experience Do You Want?
Whether you decide to go skiing or snowboarding, your overall experience will also depend on the kind of slopes you’re on. Some slopes are better for snowboarding, while others are more fun for skiing.
Maybe you’re visiting the slopes with a group. If that’s the case, you probably want to do the same activity as everyone else so that you can all keep up with each other and enjoy your time together.
Both snowboarding and skiing can allow you to explore the wintry wonderland and see some slopes’ amazing views. However, skiing will let you get higher up sooner, or at least let you see your beautiful surroundings at your own pace.
Maybe your decision is based on the snow conditions. Skiing doesn’t always give you the same satisfying adrenaline buzz that snowboarding can. If you like the idea of cutting tricks over bumps or slashing through thick, ungroomed powder, then snowboarding is definitely the way to go!
However, if you’re a speed demon, you should definitely stick with skiing! Skiis let you race down the slopes over steep, packed powder. Either way, you’re sure to have a blast on the slopes! Maybe you can take a lesson for each to help you decide?
Snowboarding vs. Skiing: Cost and Danger
Both skiing and snowboarding have similar costs when it comes to the gear used. For either activity, you can also save yourself a lot of money by purchasing used gear.
Of course, the other major cost will be lift tickets – which cost the same regardless of whether you’re skiing or snowboarding. For better or for worse, there’s no opportunity for savings here aside from getting a season pass if you live close enough to ski resorts.
According to the numbers, snowboarding is slightly more dangerous than skiing.
For every thousand average skiing days, there are 2-3 injuries compared to 3-6 injuries for every thousand average snowboarding days. So statistically speaking, skiers can ski twice as long as snowboarders without sustaining an injury.
These numbers are especially true at the beginner level. Beginner skiers are less likely to get injured than beginner snowboarders, with 18% of beginner skiers getting injured compared to 48% of beginner snowboarders.
Keep in mind that a lesson or two when getting started is a great way to start yourself off right and avoid learning bad habits that could increase your chances of an injury.
Technically there is no real answer to whether skiing or snowboarding is more fun because they are both fun in different ways.
It all depends on what you’re looking for! Either way, you’re sure to have a good time on the slopes.
If you found this article helpful, then make sure to take a look at some of my other related articles linked below!