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Snowboarding is a boardsport on snow. Riders equipment consists of a snowboard, boots, and bindings. It became a Winter Olympic Games medal sport in 1998.

Snowboarding involves descending a snow covered slope with a board attached to your feet. The board is commonly known as a snowboard.

There are three primary sub-disciplines in snowboarding:

This covers most snowboarders - the object is just to have fun cruising down the mountain. This is also known as All-Mountain Snowboarding[?]. Another variant of Freeriding is Extreme Snowboarding.

Freeride snowboarding is influenced significantly by surfing, where the focus is on making clean lines in the water. Many freeride purists attach an almost spiritual connotation to carving down the mountain.

Though the term itself is rather nebulous, it is mostly used to describe snowboarders who prefer to spend most of their time getting air[?] with jumps and halfpipes. Freestyle can of course mean anything, but for historical reasons the term has come to be associated with this style of riding. Typically, a wider & shorter snowboard between 130 and 170 centimeters is combined with soft-shelled boots to afford the rider with more flexibility. The flexibility of the snowboard allows it to flex on the transitions of a half pipe or obstacle, while the more flexible boots make it easier for the rider to make tight turns.

Freestyle snowboarding is influenced greatly by skateboarding. Many ski areas operate terrain parks[?] which often simulate the urban skateboard environment, complete with handrails[?], funboxes[?] and machine formed jumps.

Relative to freestyle and freeriding, there aren't very many people pursuing the Alpine subdiscipline. Alpine snowboarders use longer (170cm+), pointed, narrow boards and the hard-shelled boots which resemble ski boots[?]. The alpine board is designed purely for carving down pistes, both feet are angled sharply forward and the style of riding almost has more in common with skiing (particularly mono skiing[?]), than it does with other kinds of snowboarding

Each subdiscipline tends to favor a slightly different snowboard design.


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