What does a snowboard binding consist of?
Snowboard bindings secure your feet to the board and increase the protection provided by your boots. In order to give you optimum user satisfaction, they need to be comfortable and safe while providing you with perfect support and control. You will understand how they work better if you know what they are made of.
The spoiler or the highback
This is the vertical rod at the back of the binding that supports the calf. It greatly influences the guidance of the board, especially whenever you have to negotiate a turn with your heels. Their size varies from model to model. Large spoilers give you good control of the board. They are also quite stiff and offer a very firm support, leaving little mobility in the calf. These high highbacks are designed for experienced users as well as freeride enthusiasts. The shorter models are suitable for freestyle. They are also perfect for novice users. Finally, the inclination is adjustable with a lever or a knob.
The base or baseplate
This is the frame that supports all the bindings and into which you slide your snowboard boots. It is also the frame that transmits the strength of your limbs to the board. It is made of different materials such as aluminium, carbon, urethane or fibreglass.
The heel arch
Located under the spoiler, the arch holds your heel in the binding. It can be fixed directly to the frame or be mobile. It is adjustable on certain models of bindings to give you maximum support. Its material is variable: aluminium for a rigid hoop or plastic for more manoeuvrability and comfort.
The sole or footbed
This is a damping pad placed in the base to absorb shocks and vibrations. You will notice that its position is slightly inclined so that your knees and hip are well aligned.
The gas pedal
Located at the front of the binding, it is a foam piece that you can move forward or backward to optimise your support and comfort. It also helps you steer the board better. Finally, it also allows your toes to transmit their power to the board when accelerating through turns.
The centre disc
This is the room in which you will house the screws to rivet your bindings to the board. It is also on this disc that you will determine the fixing angle of your rear foot and front foot according to your riding style.
They attach the feet to the fastener. This one has two of them:
- the instep (or ankle) strap: it is made up of hooks and cranks for a tight fit around your limb. This soft and comfortable attachment link is often lined with pads.
- the toe strap: it holds the shoe at the front of the binding. It closes with a ratchet strap cap. The different types of fastening and adjustments according to practice
Rear entry or quick release fasteners
This is a very practical clip fastener because it allows you to enter your feet from the back. The strap will lift up when you tilt the spoiler backwards and all you have to do is insert your boot. Then raise the spoiler to close the binding.
Side entry bindings
Here you will need to open the straps and fold them to the side so that you can lock your boots in place. You will then have to close each strap and tighten them for good foot support.
The different levels of flexibility of the bindings
The flexibility of a snow binding is rated from 1 to 10, ranging from the softest to the most rigid.
Soft bindings with a flex of 1 to 4
They are chosen by beginner snowboarders and freestyle enthusiasts. The flexibility of these freestyle bindings gives them a lot of handling and allows you to perform several tricks like slides, flips or grabs.
Medium bindings 4-7
They are all-purpose, comfortable to wear and will help you improve your style and performance.
Rigid 7-10" bindings
These are the favourite snowboard bindings of experienced users, freeriders and fans of alpine snowboarding. They will be your best allies in the creation of perfect carvings.