How to choose your snowboard bindings?

Snowboarding is an exciting sport that takes place in the mountains, allowing riders to glide over the snow while enjoying the scenery and the adrenalin. To get off to a good start in this discipline, it's essential to have the right equipment, including bindings that meet your expectations to guarantee your safety and improve your performance on the slopes. In this article, we offer a comprehensive guide to help you choose the best snowboard bindings for your needs.

The different types of snowboard bindings

There are three main types of snowboard bindings:

  • Plate bindings: also known as "hard" bindings, these are designed for use with rigid boots specific to alpine snowboarding. They offer optimum precision and control for carving and speed, but are less suited to freestyle.
  • Shell bindings: also known as "soft" bindings, these are the most widespread on the market and are compatible with traditional soft snowboard boots. They allow good freedom of movement and are suitable for all types of snowboarding, from freestyle to powder to piste.
  • Hybrid bindings: these combine the advantages of plate and shell bindings, offering greater responsiveness and control without sacrificing flexibility. This type of binding is not yet widespread, and generally costs more than shell bindings.

Selection criteria for your snowboard bindings

To make the best choice for your snowboard bindings, consider the following points:

Practitioner level

Adapt your choice to your level of practice, whether you're a beginner, intermediate or expert:

  • Bindings for beginners: these are generally more flexible, easier to use and less expensive. They make it easier to learn and get comfortable quickly, so you can enjoy the slopes and make progress.
  • Bindings for intermediate riders: they offer a good compromise between responsiveness and comfort, and are a good choice if you want to vary your playgrounds, go into the park or explore the off-piste mountains.
  • Expert bindings: designed to offer excellent performance and meet the demands of advanced riders looking for precision and responsiveness for committed descents on all types of terrain.

The size of your boots

It's essential to choose bindings that match the size and shoe size of your snowboard boots. Most bindings are available in several sizes, generally S/M/L or XS/S/M/L depending on the brand. Make sure your boot fits perfectly into the binding to avoid any problems of comfort and safety when snowboarding.

The clamping system

There are various fastening and clamping systems for snowboard bindings:

  • Straps: this is the most common system, with one or two straps that close with ratchets (notched buckles). This system provides good foot support and fast, precise adjustment.
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  • Clicker system: similar to alpine ski bindings, this system allows boots to be attached directly to the anchors on the board. It offers rapid engagement but less flexibility and adaptability.

How to adjust your bindings?

To ensure your safety and optimize your performance, it's crucial to adjust your snowboard bindings properly. Here are a few tips:

  • Binding angle: the orientation of your feet on the board must be adapted to your riding style and level. For beginners, we recommend a duck stance with angles close to 15°/-15°. Advanced riders can adjust their angles according to their discipline and personal preferences.
  • Centering your boots: to ensure a balanced ride and even weight distribution on the board, be sure to center your boots in the bindings so that the heel and toe protrude equally from each side of the board.
  • Stance width: the distance between your feet must be comfortable and adapted to your morphology. In general, an optimal stance is considered to be between the width of your shoulders and the width of your hips. Beginners can adopt a slightly narrower stance to facilitate edge grip.

By following these tips and taking the time to try out different bindings before making your purchase, you'll be able to enjoy the pleasure of riding safely and with the right equipment for your needs.