Let’s rewind to two years ago, it is probably one of the hottest days of (Scottish) summer and I am on my way to Xscape (now called Snow Factor). After months of chat my pals have convinced me to come snowboarding, this will be the first time in nine years that I have set foot on a board – it’s just like riding a bike though right?
I soon realised:
Lesson #1 – Snowboarding is not like riding a bike
I’ve pretty much filed that night into the “never again” section of my memory so it’s hard to recall but I’m pretty sure I spent a humiliating three hours rolling down the hill before drag-wobbling myself back up again on the POMA. With a bruised bum and a battered ego I resolved to make it my mission to master snowboarding.
I am a relatively fit person; I run, dance, stretch and have good core strength. However, snowboarding is one of those unique sports that uses muscles I didn’t even know existed. It requires balance and technique that only gets better if you practise. I remember coming home from a 1.5 hour lesson exhausted.
Which brings us to today. Its a warm-ish (soon to be rainy) summer’s day in Scotland and what am I doing tonight? I’m going to Snow Factor. Two years on from my disaster evening and I am a much more confident boarder and have started to try some freestyle, which is great! This doesn’t mean that I can pack my board away in April and then hop back on again in the winter. During the summer months I like to try and hit the indoor slope once or twice a month. It’s enough to keep my skills up so that when the snow starts falling I’ll be ready for action!
In Scotland we are fortunate enough to have a few year round ski / snowboarding slopes. As I’m based in Glasgow I tend to favour the indoor slope but some of the dry slopes are a more affordable option:
Snow Factor, Braehead
Bearsden Ski and Board Club, Glasgow
Glasgow Ski and Snowboard Centre, Bellahouston Park, Glasgow
Midlothian Snowsports Centre, Hillend
Polmonthill Snowsports Centre, Falkirk
Firpark Ski Centre, Tillicoultry
Aberdeen Snowsports Centre, Aberdeen
Newmilns Snow and Sports Complex, Ayrshire
If you can’t make it to a year round slope, why not try a few of these YouTube exercises, designed to keep the right muscles engaged over the summer.