Written by Aaron Thomas and Simon Jones | Photographed by Aaron Thomas

Snowboarding has its early history rooted in the American back yard. People have been using the sled as an outdoor wintertime activity for many years, however with the help of Sherman Poppen the activity evolved into its own unique sport. Poppen fashioned two skis together and added a rope handle for use as steering reins. He called his creation the Snurfer, due to the fact that his toy was reminiscent of a surfboard yet was used on snow. The Snurfer became a commercial success, and enjoyed a fairly long lifetime throughout the sixties and seventies. The snowboards we are familiar with today owe their success to the vision of one man – Jake Burton. Burton had used the Snurfer as a child and by 1980 he had developed his own unique board, inspired by the skateboard. After developing rudimentary bindings, it was clear how superior Burton’s innovations were for the industry. Resorts during this period only allowed skiers, but over time snowboarding became an acceptable alternative to the traditional wintertime activity. Burton went on to create a phenomenally successful company marketing snowboards, apparel, and all other items relating to the snowboarding lifestyle.

It is clear that snowboarding enthusiasts each have their own individual style, however there are apparent niches that have formed in riding culture. Certain styles of snowboard riding have adopted different fashion trends. For instance the term “tight pants, wide stance” refers to both fashion a trend as well as riding style. Whether tight pants make you a better snowboarder or not is purely speculative, but these different fashions have helped create varying groups in the greater umbrella of snowboarding culture.