Snowboards

Learning to Snowboard at 30, 40, or 50 Years Old. Can it be done?

If you’re wondering if you can learn to snowboard at 30, 40, or 50 years old, you can. You just need to be aware of the differences in learning to snowboard at each age.

If you don’t believe me, I have proof. The founder of Bally’s total fitness Don Wildman is on record saying “I prefer heli-snowboarding because you can get more air off the cornices.” 

The catch? He was in his late seventies when he said it. 

One article even claims he was logging 80+ days a year on a snowboard in to his eighties. So if you’re sitting there at 30 or 40… or even 50 years old feeling sorry for yourself, don’t. 

You can snowboard well into your sixties, and even get good at snowboarding if you’re a beginner if you follow the tips below. 


Learning To Snowboard at 30, 40 or 50 Years Old


Learning to Snowboard at 30

Taking snowboard lesson

I’m in my mid 30’s and I can still backflip, 720, hit handrails, shred pow and catch 80 feet of air off a jump in the park on my snowboard.

The only difference from my 20’s? I get injured more easily and it takes longer to heal. I used to bounce back from an injury in weeks, even if it was broken bones.

Now, I fall on my shoulder one time and my rotator cuff still hurts a year later. Getting old really does suck, but at least I can still shred like I’m in my 20’s! 

The reason people struggle in their 30’s is because some of you *ahem cough cough, have already started to let yourselves go.

No judgment, but if you want to be able to snowboard in your 30’s and keep up with the crew, you need to start to train off snow, and keep your body in shape.

If you do this, you can snowboard just as well as your 20 year old friends. Just know your limits and work your way up slowly to avoid injuries, because while you might not be able to rip as hard, it still might take you longer to heal if you do get injured. 

Learning to snowboard at 40

mid age snowboarder woman

You can learn to snowboard, and even ride park at 40 if you take the proper measures off the mountain.

At a big air competition in high school, there was a 40 year old snowboarder who was throwing down backside rodeos. 

The kicker? He had only learned to snowboard two years earlier. I saw this guy take some serious hits on a snowboard at 40, but he bounced right back up because… he was a bodybuilder. 

Now, I’m not saying you need to become a bodybuilder to snowboard at 40. 

What I’m saying is, the stronger you are, the harder you can get hit and get back up. If you want to be riding park in your 40’s, you need to be training strength and flexibility to avoid injuries and maintain your prowess.

Check out this snowboarding tips for beginners!

Learning to snowboard at 50

Elderly snowboarder man

My Dad learned to snowboard in his 50’s after I had been shredding a couple years and could no longer allow my father to be a dreaded skiier!

Welcome to the dark side pops. Within a year I had him hitting the jump at our local mountain. Within two he was ripping black diamonds out west. 

If you’re 50 or older and want to learn how to snowboard, it’s not too late. I would just recommend staying away from the rails in the park as those things hurt, and let’s be honest, your rail tricks are really only going to impress the 20 year olds. 

Stick to the pow and your fellow 50 year olds will be stoked for you.

I prefer heli-snowboarding because you can get more air off cornices

Don Wildman

5 Tips To Learn To Snowboard at 30, 40 or 50

Snowboarding gear

1. Wear pads, wrist guards and a helmet

As I’ve said, the biggest difference between learning to snowboard as a kid and learning later in life is your ability to heal after an injury. 

The best way to deal with it? Don’t get injured in the first place. 

The first 3 days are the most brutal when learning to snowboard at 30, 40, or 50 so make sure to use protective gear so you don’t walk away with a broken wrist, or worse.

2. Strength train, do yoga, and don’t forget cardio

Yoga

When learning to snowboard at an older age, the problem isn’t that you’re old, it’s that you’re out of shape. Our lifestyles usually don’t catch up to us until after our 20’s. 

Once you’re in your 30’s or later, that 3 beers a day habit really starts to show, and all of a sudden, your lack of cardio prevents you from completing a full run without stopping for a break. 

Start lifting weights, doing yoga, and working on your cardio and you’ll have no problem snowboarding in your 30’s just as hard as the kids.

3. Train your board sports skills in the off season

As an older snowboarder, you don’t have the luxury of learning mistakes the hard way. 

The way to get around this is off season, off-mountain training. Learn to skateboard, wakeboard, or just use a balance board in your living room on the soft carpet. Jump on a trampoline. 

These things will all teach you crucial snowboard skills to help you learn even faster without getting hurt, even if you’re pushing 50 years old.

4. Know Your Limits

As a kid, I would smash my face off the ground and pop right back up. I would break bones and be out snowboarding the next day in a cast. I would tumble like a ragdoll and think nothing of it.

At 30, 40, or 50, these snowboarding injuries are going to last a lot longer, keep you off the mountain, and probably require physical therapy. 

If you’re already prepared by getting stronger, more flexible, and in better shape, you wear protective gear and train in the offseason, the next best thing is to take baby steps and know your limits. 

You don’t have the luxury of overdoing it and finding out the hard way that you weren’t ready to attempt that backflip. 

Need help? Come learn the baby steps in Shred School

5. Create a practice routine

If you trained in any other sport, you would go to “practice” every week, especially if you don’t want snowboarding to be hard to learn. 

Snowboarding is no different. What do you do every time you get to the mountain? I recommend you start by working your way through each technique you can do one by one.

Start with the easier ones and work your way up. Before the day is over, try to work your way up to the edge of your abilities, and try one thing that’s beyond your comfort zone.

Do this every time you go to the mountain, and you’ll consistently progress.

BONUS: Join Shred School

Want a shortcut to get good at snowboarding at 4o years old?

How about 60? We put together the step by step process to go from complete beginner to backflip in only one year. 

It’s like having your own private online snowboard coach. Whether you’re 40 and stepping on the board for the first time, or 50 and trying to keep up with your adult kids, we have you covered.

Those are my favorite tips for how to get learn to snowboard at 30, 40, or 50. If you can put these into practice, you can learn to snowboard fast, prevent injuries and keep up with the kids out there on the slopes. 

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To learn more about snowboarding, read this posts:


how to backside handplant
how to indy grab
how to ride switch on a snowboard

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