How do I adjust snowboard bindings?
How do you know if you are goofy or regular?
You don't position yourself in the same way on a snowboard, depending on whether you are right or left handed. This is what is commonly called the goofy or regular position, which will determine which foot you will put forward, the left foot or the right foot. If you are new to snowboard binding adjustment, you will have to learn how to put your foot in the right place, so that you can determine which side you are on! As you can imagine, this step should not be neglected, as it will help you determine which foot should be put forward, and therefore the type of glide and turn you should adopt accordingly. Still in doubt as to which direction you should place your feet? If necessary, use the writing to your advantage as a guide. Place your board vertically, so that the front is up and the writing is in the right direction.
Other simple tips can help you to see more clearly when adjusting your snowboard bindings:
- The skateboarding technique: if you can and if you have such equipment at home, don't hesitate to get on your board to determine the "natural" position of your feet. If you put your foot straight ahead, you are most likely right-handed.
- The scooter technique: here too, you will naturally find your snowboarding position according to the foot you put forward.
- Chair technique: try to get on a chair without holding on to the backrest, and observe the foot you put in front of it: if it is the right foot, you are most likely right-handed. If you are right-handed, you are most likely right-handed. If necessary, use the same technique on the stairs.
How to choose your stanza?
Once you've determined which way to place the board, it's time to look at the settings of your bindings and determine the distance between them. This is called the stance, which is the distance between the front and back foot. This very personal snowboard binding adjustment should be done with the maximum possible consideration for the sensations you are looking for. So, to know exactly which setting will suit you best, don't hesitate to take a screwdriver with you on your first outing. In this way, you will be able to determine the stance that best suits you during your riding sessions.
If you are unsure, you should know that snowboards regularly provide a recommended stance marker. You will be strongly advised, at first and during your first use, to respect the snowboard bindings as much as possible. You will be able to improve them later on when you are more experienced. Otherwise, you can use the length between your heel and your knee. The more distance between your heel and your knee, the more stability you will have. Conversely, the narrower the gap, the easier it will be to move from one edge to the other.
Which angle to choose and how to adjust your bindings?
In snowboarding, the feet are not necessarily placed on the board in parallel. Depending on how you practice this sport, you will apply a more or less important angle to the bindings, to make your ride as easy as possible. You will have understood this: there is no exact science in the field, and you will certainly need several tries before finding the right angle for your bindings! For example, if you are a beginner snowboarder and you want to practice on the piste as much as possible, you will be advised to orientate your front foot in the direction of the descent (+18 and -6 for the back foot). This measure can also work for all mountain use - both on and off piste.
In the case of a freestyle practice, professionals will tend to recommend the "duckstance". This very common position is also very popular with riders, and allows you to position your feet like a "duck". The front foot has a light positive - usually in the range of 9 to 15°. The rear foot, on the other hand, is positioned in a light negative (between -3 and -6°). Thanks to this position of the feet, it will be easier for you to perform complex manoeuvres and tricks with your snowboards.
The centering of the boot
Before screwing the bindings in completely, taking into account the width of your snowboard boards, you must make sure that your boots fit perfectly in the centre of your equipment. In this way, you will prevent your foot from rubbing against the snow, and you will avoid falls when making tight turns. To do this, place your boot in the binding and find the ideal position so that the boot overhangs both front and back. Then lock the binding while removing the boot, and start to fix a screw in one of the previously drilled holes. To make sure that the binding holds well and so as not to crumple the thread, do not hesitate to screw it in by hand.
Adjusting the straps
Straps are among the fasteners that hold the boots inside the mechanism. Adjustment here can be made lengthwise, by means of a screw on the side of the strap on the part with the buckle. In this way, and depending on the size of your shoe, you adjust the whole assembly by choosing the appropriate anchoring point, and then screw it back on firmly without forcing it. To sum up, the strap is well tightened when the rigid part of the binding (i.e. the metal buckle) is well to the side and there are still a few clicks left in case you need to tighten it during the day. Note that there is also a toe strap, which usually holds the front of the foot in place.
The spoiler is that part located at the back of the binding, against the lower calf, which will determine the angle you will adopt. Thus, the greater the angle, the more powerful and responsive you will be in backside mode. On the other hand, a less inclined spoiler will provide greater stability with increased comfort thanks to a more upright position.
You are now ready to start your initiation, or to perfect your snowboarding skills! As you can see, there are a certain number of essential points to check before you hit the slopes, in order to optimise your safety and increase your comfort. For example, when you first invest in new snowboards, and even before the first outing of the season, it is essential to check the screws. For any snowboard binding adjustment operation you will have to carry out, it is strongly recommended to tighten it by hand, and above all not to use a screwdriver.