Is Snowboarding Like Skateboarding: Similarities and the Differences!

Is Snowboarding Like Skateboarding

Snowboarding and skateboarding are highly dynamic sports done on boards and require maneuverable skills.

Both sports have similarities but one question has left many enthusiasts asking: Does snowboarding feel like skateboarding?

The techniques and environmental factors surrounding these activities play some significant roles in their similarities and differences.

During the warmer part of the year, many snowboarders like myself always wished we kept cruising the snow with our boards, but we still had to face the reality that our lovely sports get to go on a break for a while.

Meanwhile, skateboarders remained active with their boards on the concrete ground.

I couldn’t stay sidelined again last summer because I needed to burn off some energy on a board. So, I did something interesting. I got on a skateboard.

At first, I felt the adrenaline rush as though I was trying to perfect a new sport but still doing what I had done before at the same time.

Let me share the similarities and differences I noticed with these boards with you.

Is Skateboarding Like Snowboarding, What’s the Truth

Is Snowboarding Like Skateboarding

You would wonder, since they are both boards, they should be the same right?

Yes, snowboarding and skateboarding have so many striking similarities, especially when you use a longboard during skateboarding. 

Hey, this is not for newbie snowboarders. If you’ve not gotten your balance in either of these boards, you shouldn’t be thinking of cross-training yet.

If you’ve been on both boards, as similar as they are, you will notice their differences because these boards are not the same, to start with.

I will show you where they are similar and where they are not, but first, let me talk about the origin of these sports.

The Back history of snowboarding and skateboarding

Skateboarding, as a sport, began in the late 1940s and early 1950s in California. It was more of an action sport because of the twists and turns involved.

People also considered skateboarding a recreational activity, while some saw it as a means of transportation.

Nobody knows who first produced the skateboard, but it came in wooden boxes with roller skate wheels.

The then California surfers called it sidewalk surf because they ‘surfed’ on the sidewalk. They saw it as a similar activity to surfing and continued with it when the waves they surfed on went down.

In 1960, companies in California that manufactured surfing materials with the likes of Kips, Bing’s, Jacks, and Makaha started making skateboards that came close to looking like surfboards.

Since then, these manufacturers continued transforming the box skates till they got to what it is now.

Events and figures that shaped Snowboarding  Dates of the events that shaped snowboarding
Engineer Sherman Poppen created the first snowboard. His wife named it ‘Snuffers’.  1965
First played in Muskegon, Michigan, U.S.  1979  
Introduced as an Olympic sport.1998  
First played at Paralympics.2014  
Tom Sims and Jake Burton Carpenter pioneered modern snowboarding  1970 – 1980
Tom Sims, Jake Burton Carpenter, Mike Olson, and David Kemper designed and manufactured modern snowboards.  1970 – 1980

Meanwhile, snowboarding was inspired by the combination of skiing, skateboarding, and sledding.

Snowboards were first recorded in 1965 in Michigan, United States when an Engineer called Sherman Poppen fastened two skis together and attached a rope for control on it so his daughters could stand on it and glide down the hill.

This toy an Engineer invented became so popular that he sold the idea to a manufacturer who manufactured and sold over a million pieces.

We wouldn’t know about snowboarding and skateboarding if not for some key figures and events that have massively shaped these sports. Here are some of them.

Events and figures that shaped Skateboarding  Dates of the events that shaped skateboarding
Came into existence in California.  1940 -1950
Skateboarding was first featured in the TV show and hosted by Stan Richard.  1950
The earliest Skateboard exhibition took place in California.  1963
Skateboarding was first featured in TV show and hosted by Stan Richard.  1964
The first skateboarding Magazine was published.  1964
Became an Olympic sport  2020

If you’ve read to this point, it means you’ve learned about the origin and history of your favorite sport.

Come with me as I list the striking differences I discovered as a boarder.

Snowboarding Vs. Skateboarding

Snowboarding is an active winter sport where boarders who are clad in warm comfortable winter clothes and a special type of boots, stand on the snowboard that has an attachment for the feet and descend a hill or slope entirely covered with mounts of snow.

Skateboarding is a popular and almost extreme sport that involves putting on your regular clothes and protective gear to perform various twists and tricky movements on a skateboard.

1. Strapping

Snowboards come with straps to secure your feet. You can perform your tricks with your feet securely attached to the board.

However, you can kick a foot free when you need to push yourself or change direction.

Skateboards are free of straps. You mostly need to work on your balance and spread your weight while using your legs and knees to perform your tricks.

2. Techniques

We have seen boarders stand or squat during both sports. However, the techniques to handle snowboarding are different from skateboarding.

Skateboarding requires you to push yourself in your skating direction while maintaining balance by engaging your core.

There’s a lot of leg movement during this activity because your feet are not strapped to the board, and you can freely maneuver on the board.

In snowboarding, you are gliding down a slope or hill, and that instantly gives you the speed you need.

You only need to use your leg to push when you encounter a flat part during your descent and then navigate with the back of your dominant foot.

3. Boots

Snowboarding requires a special kind of boots with soft soles. Manufacturers designed these boots to aid control while on course.

Skateboarding can be done with boots or sports footwear with strong soles. 

4. Sports learning curve

As a beginner, snowboarding can be an easier choice between the two sports.

First, you decide on your dominant foot and get it strapped to the board for movement and the other foot should be free to help you push yourself. 

During skateboarding, though you own your legs, which enables you to place or remove your feet at will, you may struggle with balance as a beginner.

Learning tricks on a skateboard can be risky and hard, but if you master the art of skateboarding, you may find it easier to snowboard.

Overall, you can’t take away the fact that these sports are challenging and require dedication and determination.

5. Boards

When comparing boards, the snowboards are usually longer and wider than the skateboards.

Skateboards are smaller and have smoother wheels that help control your speed and direction on smooth surfaces.

Snowboards come with straps to aid gripping. You find it easier balancing on a snowboard with the bindings while sliding through.

6. Cost of gears

Snowboarding requires you to get the entire kit, which is more expensive than skateboard kits. With snowboarding, you need a specialized boot for the activity, protective gear, a snowboard, and bindings.

All these can cost you a lot of dollars. Though you can improvise with the yard sales version, it will save you some extra bucks. Skateboarding only needs the board and protective wear.

7. Time and location of sports

You can not skateboard on a snow-filled, sloppy ground. On the reverse, you can’t snowboard on a dry, flat, concrete surface.

While you can skateboard around the year so long you have the sidewalks free of obstacles, you can not snowboard around the year until it snows.

8. Prone to danger and injury

Skateboarding makes you more vulnerable to injury because of the extensive tricks and manipulation that are mainly done on concrete grounds.

Skateboarders have turned their ACLs and sustained worse injuries in this sport.

Aspects SkateboardingSnowboarding
Physical benefits  Flips use binding, coordination, and balance, spins, ride with gravity.Increases agility, trains the core for endurance, aids weight loss by burning calories, builds flexibility, and targets lower body fitness.
Skills and techniques  Spinning, backflips, twists, tricks on different surfaces and ramps, uses the foot to push forward.Burns calories, builds muscles especially the leg muscles, enhances balancing, trains the calves and glutes, and improves focus.
Origin  First built in Michigan by an Engineer for his daughters in 1965. First called Snuffers. First played in the Olympics in 1998.Hard sole shoes, everyday wear, protective gear, skateboard.
Terrain  All year round, concrete ground, parks, rails, ramps.Snowy environment, downhill or sloppy area, resorts.
Sports gear  Hard sole shoes, every day wear, protective gear, skateboard.Special boots, safety gear, bindings, layers of thick, warm clothes, snowboard.

Before you transfer skills or learn either snowboarding or skateboarding, ensure you take time to go through these differences and analysis.

Snowboarding will require adequate preparation because of its expensive kits and also for those struggling with cold environments.

With skateboarding, you can enjoy your sports without worrying about the costly kits and weather. Regardless, both sports are incredibly beneficial to health.

Quick Attention

Is snowboarding like skateboarding or not, they are similar in some ways and different in other aspects.

I have provided all you need to know about these sports, but here’s my final advice: try and give both sports a try.

If you’ve always been a skateboarder, you only need to master a few techniques to have a successful cruise on the snowboard.

I would love to hear about your experience on both boards, your ideas, and which board favors you more.

If you haven’t tried snowboarding or skateboarding, here’s your cue! Ask me your questions and share your doubts and reservations with me.

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