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Overall Thoughts on Freestyle Skiboarding and Progression

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  • Overall Thoughts on Freestyle Skiboarding and Progression

    With all of these threads going on I really wanted to dig deep into the philosophies of everything within the freestyle aspect of our sport. I've been doing a lot of thinking in the off-season, not just about skiboarding, but just the whole freestyle vibe in general. And, in the end it led me back to how I look at skiboarding and altered the frame of mind that I was in last season.

    So, for a while now I have thought a lot about progression and change. Is it necessary? It is all based on who you talk to, of course. Those in this realm of our sport look at things very differently. While some opinions may seem similar, the truth of the matter is there are definite areas where great divides with two or more general opinions exist.

    I wanted to clarify what I meant the other day about change in style and such. I would like to see change in some manner. What I'm about to say I definitely am guilty of myself, last season being a perfect example as I was submerged in this Colorado New School ski culture and tried to emulate it so much that I was basically a short-ski skier and not a skiboarder.

    The sport hasn't really progressed in so long, from what I have gathered while watching videos that you all have presented, both currently and in the past, as well as what others have shown me that no longer ride, and of course my research digging through old videos all about the internet. It has more so followed the path paved by skiing, which is totally the wrong approach based on the idea of there being a reason that we ride different equipment. I wouldn't expect a mountainboarder (big wheels attached to a shock absorbing frame attached to a snowboard-esque body with grip tape) to want to follow the same vibe as a skateboarder. There should be separation, in even the parallel that they both exist in similar context.

    I have really looked at what has happened with skiboarding and the trends that have occurred. And, I see it has even caused a split somewhat. Those who followed the paths of skiing typically, but not always the case, ski anywhere from 25%-75% of the time. In several cases we have lost skiboarders to skiing altogether. Those who have tried to stay in the vein of things have some roller background or their mentors/influences in the sport are those in the roller background. I think both approaches can work, but I still think we need something distinct to call our own. What it is I have not quite found yet. But, I am looking for a muse as I stroll through my mind and think, experiment in the off-season, and ultimately make attempts during the season to bring some sort of my unique change to the sport, for at least my end of things.

    By change in the sport I don't mean I feel I am some sort of leader that will take us in a direction nor do I feel that for some reason people should follow suit. I do this more for my own way of presenting the sport and it is more intrinsic than anything. It's for myself, but of course like anyone I would love to have some sort of impact.

    I truly am curious on all of your thoughts, in-depth please, from skiboarders within the freestyle realm as well as those who watch and have any sort of insight at all. I need openness and would not be offended in any way if your views clashed with mine. I am just looking to create an open-ended discussion.
    I'm a snollerblader.

    Go big or go home.

    "Just keep on doin' it if you love it. If you don't, scram!" - Angel Soto, SFA, 1996



  • #2
    very well said , Dave
    from another side of our sport outside of the park .. free ride skiboarding .., besides progression in style .. we have also had progression in equipment ... i also think that developing a distinct look to our sport is very important ... my own feeling is that two of the most important developments , has been the development of a way to make snowboard boots work on skiboards with the Rockerbinding and Revel8 soft boot riser, and the new rockered Condors... my hope is that riders using these two new tools will contribute to a new look and a new style of free riding ....my hope is that there will be feedback between what the new tools will allow riders to do , and riders creating a new look using the new equipment , hopefull y what will come about is something instantly recognizable as not just folks emulating twin tip style on short skis , but a smooth , exciting , new look snowsport all over tthe mountain outside of the park , to complement the new look style within the park ..
    Boards :
    Blunt Xls -SBOL Modified GNU Rear Entry Snowboard Bindings
    Rockered Condors- SBOL Modified Sims Cipher Snowboard Bindings
    Rockered Condors - Backcountry modified RVL8 Receptor Binding -
    Spliffs -Backcountry modified RVL8 Receptor binding
    Spruce Osprey - Center Mounted with Spruce Backcountry riser/ Ambition AT binding
    Spruce Sherpa - Rear Mounted with Spruce Backcountry riser/ Fritschi AT binding

    Boots:
    Ride Insano Snowboard Boots
    Full Tilt Booters

    Comment


    • #3
      I've come to the conclusion that I don't mind if the sport progresses in style or anything else for that matter. What I am worried about with the push of more comps, the push to get better, the push to be noticed is that it's just going to bring more rif-raf into the sport. I like the culture the way it is, honestly I don't really know how it is now as I haven't been on the forum in so long, but the way it was when I started. Back then, I was riding short skis, and the members of this forum welcomed me with open arms. I have noticed that in the last couple of years there have been a few people that have joined the forums and just started causing problems, being assholes, being stupid, making the more mellow riders look like we associate with assholes. I just don't want to get that association, I taught for two years at Brandywine and Boston Mills Ski resorts, I got no respect, I got no acceptance from anyone other than snowboard instructors, and that's only because the one day I did snowboard training they were begging me to teach on board next year.

      I'm not going to lie and say that Park is my game, I wish it was, but I'm a pussy. I know what I can do and what I can't. It's not a matter of mind over matter, it feels deeper than that to me. I'd rather just ride down a hill through some trees, and dive into a huge sea of powder. I may never go pro, I may never be famous, I may never get anything from skiboarding other than enjoyment. I just don't want to see the community change, I know our senior members such as JJue and Mahatma will always be the same, and I know others have their beliefs as well, as long as we don't turn into a group that I don't think I would want to associate with, I will be in the sport. And since the only way to interact with other riders is the forum, I'll be here too.

      And in terms of progression, I don't think taking tricks from skating is going to get us any respect in other sport communities. If we want to progress, we're going to have to come up with new tricks all together, things people have never seen done, be it a double switch linclon loop or something else crazy, we're going to have to be something else we can't be stealing from other sports and hoping it goes over well.

      All in all, as I've said before, I'm proud to be a skiboarder we seem to be one of the most grounded groups in the winter or action sports groups, we tend to grasp that we're at a certain level, and that people will come and go. We're past our prime, sure there will be am ironic flux in a few years to bring skiboarding back to the public eye, but even then we'll end up a mockery of ourselves and I don't want to see that ever happen. That is what my problem is with the entire progression idea, we'll, as an entire group, just end up the weird loser that ironically gets voted the Homecoming Queen...
      Revel8 ALPdors
      Gold Revel8 Receptors
      Kneissl Flexon Pro Boots

      ____
      ____
      Be who you are, it makes you charismatic...
      If life's not beautiful without the pain, well I'd just rather never ever even see beauty again.

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi Dennis,

        Thanks for posting your honest feelings and I want to make sure you know you'll always be accepted here.

        Please everyone, you know I try my best to keep the forum a welcoming, flame free place so if you know of anyone who is being disrespectful of other members please let me know.

        As for Bloom's comments you have to understand Dave is a very driven, self motivated person who is always looking to improve and excel. Also he's very interested in park riding and loves rollerblading so it's what he tends to concentrate on but It's my feeling that all types of riders and disciplines are as important as all others and a great way to set skiboarding apart from other sports is the sheer, unadulterated fun we have, accompanied by a willingness to accept anyone with open arms.

        G

        Comment


        • #5
          I love this sport. I totally agree with you, Jack, on the progression in equipment. I look at older boards, and I see how small they are and weak looking, and I just think to myself "There's noway I'd feel safe on those.". Then I look at the newer boards, and I pretty much want to try them all out! Or even in my short time in the sport already, the progression I've seen. Entering my second season, I've seen: the introduction of more durable boards, improvements to the already new and advanced Receptor bindings, the introduction of usage of softboots, rockered boards, and probably even more that I don't even know about!

          As for pushing the sport itself, I know exactly what you mean, Dave. If we have too much of a ski influence, then we're too close to skiing. Too much of a skate influence will bring us too close to skating. We're on a search for our own niche, and making a name for skiboarding itself. We're not skiing, and we're not skating. Not to say that influences from those sports is completely a bad thing.

          Personally, I feel we need to find our own brand of style. Our own type of tricks. I think it's great that skiboarding, you can feel comfortable enough sooner to go bigger than you can on skates. And I think it's great that skiboarding, you're open up to tricks that you can't do on skis, such as a a slew of skate style grinds. Obviously, I have no clue what kind of style we need to bring, but I have a feeling that it will push our sport. Individuality is what pushes something.

          As for your response, Dennis. New people joining the forums, being assholes, causing problems, etc.? I realize I'm very new here, but I don't see these people as a problem necessarily. Yes, acceptance is good and it's an intricate part of the strength behind this community, however honesty trumps all. I look around here, and I see everyone get nothing but praise for everything. I'm guilty of this myself. When the video of my first 360 surfaced on here, everyone was telling me it was great. When I look back on it, I realize how sketchy it was. I so would have thrived more off criticism towards that. That's the kind of stuff this community needs towards riders to help progress the individuals. And when the individuals progress, the whole should progress as well. As for your desire for acceptance from the other sports? Our sport needs to be more intrinsic. Nobody from another sport is going to praise us, the minority...the uncool guys. You saying our sport needs that totally misses the point of this thread. We're trying to discuss progressing the sport in a new individual way.

          I don't mean to "come down" on anyone, or look like I'm saying any one person has the "right answer" or the "wrong answer". These are just my thoughts on it.
          I Ski 4 Smitty.

          Comment


          • #6
            i feel like our progression as a sport has been at a slow but steady pace.... i feel like our pace is fine the way it is
            facebook.com/dlynamr8

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2s7yBfCTp2M

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Davelynam View Post
              i feel like our progression as a sport has been at a slow but steady pace.... i feel like our pace is fine the way it is
              id have to agree with dave lynam on this one, after all this is a small community compared to the large "new school culture" with all their skiers that SHOULD be feeding off of eachothers progression. the skiboarding community has far less people moving "slow and steady". just like ethan said, he looks back on his first 360 and realized he has progressed far from then, same goes for skiboarding, you may not notice the changes right away, but in the future you'll be able to look back and see how we have progressed.

              Comment


              • #8
                ^Dennis, I'm shocked that that's how you feel about the sport you are so proud to be a part of. Last time I rode with you at the US Open a few years ago, you seemed like one of the guys who was really stoked to be out there riding. I have to admit your park riding isn't top notch, but you were out there having a good time and pushing your limits. It saddens me that you have sort of given up on your own progression and succumbed to the idea that you just don't have it in you. As a wise man once said, "Skiboarding is 90% mental, the other half is physical."

                ^In response to Dave Lynam, I think Bloom is referring more to the direction of progression rather than the pace of it.

                Anyway, Dave brings up an interesting point here. It has a lot to do with what, honestly, keeps me from riding skiboards 90% of the time. I was a skier long before I ever touched a pair of skiboards, so my style inherently leans towards the newschool skier side of the spectrum. To me, it is the culture and community of skiboarding that attracts me to the sport, rather than the equipment itself. To be honest, I actually see the equipment as a hinderance when applied to my style of riding. I like big jumps, I like to go fast, I like to do floaty shifties and tweaked out tail grabs, I like to do nose and tail bonks, I like to lay out butters on rollers, I like bouncing in and out of powder turns, I like having poles. All of these things are either much harder to do or look downright goofy on skiboards.

                This is not to say that skiboards aren't loads of fun. They are a blast to toss around on rails. Laying out short radius hand-drag carves is great. They are sometimes refreshingly nimble in the air, and the lack of poles and light weight makes nailing that mute grab a bit easier. They can access super tight tree lines that would leave long skis tangled up. They fit in the trunk a Sebring convertible. You can even get a pair with Kirk Thompson's name on the topsheet!

                In other words, I don't think anybody should label skiboards as a superior tool to long skis or a snowboard. Or vise versa for that matter. It is all a matter of personal preference. But I digress.

                Basically, skiboards are a tool with very different advantages and hinderances than long skis, and I would love to see more riders take advantage of this. In the park, this has mostly to do with their small size being advantageous towards innovative rail tricks. Some inline-inspired grinds requiring contorted ankle positions are simply impossible on long skis. Riding skiboards with snowboard boots would allow even more flexibility in the ankles for this. Also, the lack of poles and the small size and light weight of the boards open up possibilities for tons of handplants and parkour-inspired stuff. I have seen mark carraro mess around a bit with this, but nobody else really. In the air, the short boards open up some possibilities for screamin seaman double grab combos, since it is much easier to cross/uncross your feet.

                All of this is stuff that I really think could set skiboarding apart. Hopefully with increased participation from the rolling community, the sport will start to have some fresh new influences. I probably wont be the one pushing these limits on skiboards, because like I said I am a skier at heart. But I would love to be the one behind the lens documenting it all go down.
                "If you don't do it this year, you'll be one year older when you do." -WM

                "I'M THE BEST SNOWLERBLADER ON THE MOUNTAIN!!!"

                Comment


                • #9
                  Please dont forget Shredfest. This is one of the major 'progressions' we have had, and is going from strength to strength. Everybody from top park riders to backcountry guys all mixing together, sharing ideas and styles, board and graphic designers on board, wives and gf's. A sound, great friendly community in action.
                  Sticky Icky Icky (go to dream board)
                  Most everything else over time.
                  Go Android

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by valmorel View Post
                    Please dont forget Shredfest. This is one of the major 'progressions' we have had, and is going from strength to strength. Everybody from top park riders to backcountry guys all mixing together, sharing ideas and styles, board and graphic designers on board, wives and gf's. A sound, great friendly community in action.
                    AMEN. the greatest event ive ever been to in my career
                    facebook.com/dlynamr8

                    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2s7yBfCTp2M

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      This specific thread is focusing on progression, so let's not digress so much. I would like to think that none of the opinions anyone has put out yet are intended to look like no one cares about the other realms of the sport. Exactly like Talon said, he draws his influence from skiing, yet he doesn't think a rollerblade influence is wrong at all. This thread itself is simply focused on progression though, so let's keep it at that...not that I'm trying to impose some sort of "authority" (God knows I'm the last to have it here), but I really am interested by this topic.



                      Originally posted by Talon
                      "If it's not broken, don't fix it."
                      As for this...I think that statement completely goes against everything we're talking about here. Not shaking things up is how things turn stale and get boring. If there's no change, and you've already "peaked", what's to stop you from leaving? Don't be afraid to open your mind and try new things. Staying the same equals fear of difference.
                      I Ski 4 Smitty.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Talon
                        I am just saying I am fine with continuing my progression through my influence of skiing, and that is how I choose to define my riding style.
                        This may be getting way too off topic, but let me ask you a question Talon. If you are choosing to emulate skiing style, what advantages do skiboards have to you over long skis?

                        I think a discussion along this vein is relevant to Dave's topic. I think the progression he is talking about has less to do with how many people on the team can do doubles or pretzels or how many grabs can you do with your fakie cork 9s, and more to do with taking advantage of what skiboards have to offer that long skis and snowboards do not.
                        "If you don't do it this year, you'll be one year older when you do." -WM

                        "I'M THE BEST SNOWLERBLADER ON THE MOUNTAIN!!!"

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I feel like this is completely off topic all together.. Ill take my posts down.. IM me on the effBee if you wannna chat it up
                          RVL8
                          \______^=======^______/
                          www.YouTube.com/TalonSei

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Plorr View Post
                            ^Dennis, I'm shocked that that's how you feel about the sport you are so proud to be a part of. Last time I rode with you at the US Open a few years ago, you seemed like one of the guys who was really stoked to be out there riding. I have to admit your park riding isn't top notch, but you were out there having a good time and pushing your limits. It saddens me that you have sort of given up on your own progression and succumbed to the idea that you just don't have it in you. As a wise man once said, "Skiboarding is 90% mental, the other half is physical."
                            This is exactly what I'm talking about, I'm stoked for my own personal progression. Any way you slice it skiboarding is essentially skiing really the only difference is how you position yourself over the boards, sure you can go bigger on skis, sure you can huck the shit out of anything you want on skis, I landed a 45 footer on skis the end of the season before last, but I sure as hell couldn't get past 40 on the boards. What really blows my mind is that DLP is throwing shit over 70 footers in CO and blowing people's minds I mean, he's where the sport is, he's doing that because it's fun and he can. Personally, I have far too much survival instinct and tend to over think tricks when I'm on my way up the jump, Lynam, he'll just sing Kesha songs and hit the jump, he has no fear and that's what it takes.

                            I don't think DLP is really trying to progress the sport, I think he's just having fun and that's what people need to see. If we try to make ourselves popular, and I know this first hand from the time I was 8 until about sophomore year of high school, nobody will accept you. If we're obviously trying too hard people can see, but if we're having fun, like when I was at Mt Bohemia before the first Midwest meet, Brian and I became legends in one day of riding. All weekend people were talking about the snowbladers that were dropping cliffs and racing down shoots between trees. We weren't trying to prove anything, we were just doing what we wanted to do and nobody had a negative thing to say about us the entire time we were there.

                            Progression will come in time, there's no doubt of that in my mind. But what it is necessary to understand is that nothing comes fast, it took snowboarding from somewhere around 1986 I believe to somewhere around 95 to become the legitimate, fastest growing, winter sport that it is today. We're starting with a lower base count, no surfers and no skate boarders to back us up, all we have is skiiers who don't really enjoy skiing, and inline skaters that don't like the feel of the extra length of the skis. I mean no offense to the groups I mentioned, but these are the facts. Hell, skiboarding got me because, even though I'd wanted to try skiboards while I was still snowboarding, I had to hurt myself bad enough that I'd be told to not ride snowboards anymore, which was a crock but anyway, you only really have me in the sport because I couldn't ride my board anymore. But I love it, and that's what matters to me.
                            Revel8 ALPdors
                            Gold Revel8 Receptors
                            Kneissl Flexon Pro Boots

                            ____
                            ____
                            Be who you are, it makes you charismatic...
                            If life's not beautiful without the pain, well I'd just rather never ever even see beauty again.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Style ...

                              To me the discussion of style and progression , is really not about making us look better to the outside world , or of deciding which one of us is part of the " in crowd " and which of us are "outsiders" but more about progression of the sport as a whole ... perhaps a digression into the history of surf culture is helpful , before there were "short boards" all surfers were "long boarders" using big long surfboards . There was an evolution in equipment and new short surfboards were created .. with the new equipment there was an evolution in style as riders took techniques from skateboarding to slash and attack the waves taking advantage of the short new boards ... this resulted in a new look and a new style of surfing ... It was the marriage of new equipment and young energetic riders on that equipment that evolved the new surfing style ...
                              In many ways I think the new modern skiboarding equipment matched with a new generation of riders is just crying out for experimentation in developing new tricks and new styles of riding ... yes there are advantages and disadvantages in our equipment compared to skis and snowboards .. what I see as VERY exciting is a new young generation of riders capitalizing on our modern skiboard equipment and showing what really can be done on it ! I will ,for one, god forbid , not be doing the tricks. As an old geezer ,my personal style will always be that of an old school skier riding his short sticks like his old long sticks because they are easier to turn ! I will , however, stare in amazement as I am schooled by my young friends here showing what CAN be done on the very same sticks I use to cruise leisurely down mountain !
                              Boards :
                              Blunt Xls -SBOL Modified GNU Rear Entry Snowboard Bindings
                              Rockered Condors- SBOL Modified Sims Cipher Snowboard Bindings
                              Rockered Condors - Backcountry modified RVL8 Receptor Binding -
                              Spliffs -Backcountry modified RVL8 Receptor binding
                              Spruce Osprey - Center Mounted with Spruce Backcountry riser/ Ambition AT binding
                              Spruce Sherpa - Rear Mounted with Spruce Backcountry riser/ Fritschi AT binding

                              Boots:
                              Ride Insano Snowboard Boots
                              Full Tilt Booters

                              Comment

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