Based on 20 years of researching and testing skiboards (all kinds under all conditions), both from our personal riding experience as well as hearing from customers all over the world), here is how to choose the right skiboards. Since we ride them, hear from customers who ride them, and work directly with the manufacturers, we can continually communicate the performance characteristics of our skiboards.
Quick Selection Method
Skiboards are fun! So just choose a pair of skiboards that call to you, fit within your budget, have your preferred bindings and hit the slopes. You won’t regret it. Skiboards have a natural, intuitive learning curve so you’ll figure it out quickly. Now, enjoy your new found freedom!
Specific Selection Method
If you prefer a more specific approach to choosing your skiboards, here’s our suggestions:
A. Ability Level
With Ski Release BindingsSummit Easy Rider 79 cm; Summit EZ 95 cm; Head Rod 94cm; Elan Freeline 99 cm; Snowjam Five-Forty 99cm
With non-release ski boot bindingsSnowjam (75 cm and 90 cm); Sporten Stringer 99cm
With Snowboard BindingsSnowjam (75 cm and 90 cm); Summit Easy Rider 79 cm; Summit EZ 95 cm; Summit ZR 88
With Ski Release BindingsSummit ZR 88cm; Summit Ecstatic 99cm; Summit Source NRG 96cm; CRZ 106cm; Head Rod 94; Summit EZ 95; Elan 99cm/125cm; Atomic 125cm; Salomon Shortmax 120cm
With Snowboard BindingsSummit ZR 88; Summit Ecstatic 99cm; Summit Source NRG 96; CRZ 106cm; Summit EZ 95cm; Snowjam 90cm
With Ski Release BindingsSummit Ecstatic 99cm; Summit Carbon Pro 99cm; Summit Carbon Pro 110cm; Summit Rocker CRZ 106cm; Summit Invertigo 118cm; Summit Marauder 125cm; Elan 125/135cm
With Snowboard BindingsSummit Ecstatic 99cm; Summit Carbon Pro 99cm; Summit Carbon Pro 110cm; Summit CRZ 106cm; Summit Invertigo 118cm; Summit Marauder 125cm;
4. Special Circumstances:
A. For skaters (easily transfer your skills to the slopes):Summit ZR88cm; Easy Rider 79cm Elan Freeline 99cm; Snowjam 75 or 90cm; Snowjam 99cm; Summit Source NRG 96cm
B. Terrain Parks
Twin Tip Skiboards (with choice of bindings) –Snowjam 75cm/90cm; Summit ZR88cm; Summit Ecstatic 99cm or Carbon Pro 99cm; Summit Custom 110cm; Carbon Pro 110cm; Summit Source NRG 96cm; Summit CRZ 106cm; Summit Rocker 118cm; Summit Marauder 125cm
C. Off Trail/Glades/BackcountrySummit Ecstatic 99cm or Carbon Pro 99cm; Summit Source NRG 96cm or CRZ 106cm; Summit Custom 110cm; Carbon Pro 110cm; Summit Rocker 118cm; Summit Marauder 125cm
D. Skiboards For KidsSummit Easy Rider 79cm; Elan Maxx or Sky; Atomic Vantage
Want to Try Before You Buy?
Check out our “Rentals By Mail” program. This offers you the opportunity to ride different skiboards and try them out to see what you prefer. Read More
More Information About Skiboards
Shorter skiboards are more maneuverable, easier to learn on, great in moguls, glades and have the feel of inline skates. However, they may not handle those long, deep, lay-it-over carves at speed and don’t have the surface area for smoother landings in the parks. Shorter (but wider) shorter skiboards ride great in powder, but not quite as well as the longer, wider ones (like the 99 cm).
Longer skiboards offer more speed and allow for the deeper, shoulder-to-the-ground carves. Big air addicts usually go with longer boards because of the extra speed and surface area for landing tricks. If you like tricks (on the ground and in the air), a symmetrical twin-tip design is also recommended.
Higher quality construction, such as laminated wood cores, triaxial fiberglass layers, rubber dampening, even aluminum reinforcement plates for greater retention of release bindings, yields higher performance and dependability. Sintered bases are faster because they hold wax better which promotes glide, though extruded bases (a little less expensive) are quite durable and fast, but don’t hold wax as well.
Determining Your Skiboard Length
When choosing skiboard length there are a few of factors you need to take into consideration. The most important ones are your height, your weight, your ability level and your personal preference (what types of terrain and conditions you like to ride on).
The basic guideline is to pick a skiboard length that is somewhere around a 2:1 ratio. This is only a rough quide as some people prefer shorter (as they feel more skate-like for example) or a little longer (they like riding powder, are used to long skis or ride in the backcountry). A shorter length will usually make the skiboard more nimble, which leads to quicker turns and more maneuverability at slower speeds, while a longer length will have a longer turn radius and be more stable at a higher speed.
Below chart shows only suggested minimum lengths:
Height Minimum Skiboard Length
5’ 75 cm
5’3″ 79 cm
5’5″ 80 cm
5’9″ 86 cm
6′ 90 cm
6’5″ 99 cm
As a general guideline, taller, heavier people and more advanced riders tend to prefer longer skiboards because they feel more comfortable making longer turns. Shorter, lighter people and less-experienced skiboarders will usually feel more comfortable with the agility of a shorter skiboard.
Imagine turning when you want! Just think about stopping and you stop! Have places on the mountain that elicit fear? Not anymore! Once you feel the confidence that skiboards inspire, you will have to rethink what “Intermediate” or “Advanced” or even “Expert” terrain means. Steeper terrain, combined with long skis or snowboards that don’t turn quickly, make for a challenging combination. Now, rather than having to think how to get down the mountain, you can just have fun —- maybe even notice the scenery for a change. Even better, if you have friends or family that may be more experienced skiers or snowboarders, now you can go hang out with them on the same terrain. Read more about skiboards at Skiboards University.
Always feel free to contact us to speak with an experienced skiboarding specialist for personal recommendations. 800-784-0540 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We’re always happy to help.
Doc Roberts, PhD., President, Skiboards Superstore, Inc.