The age old question… Skiing vs. Snowboarding!

For those of you discovering snow sports for the first time, this can be a tricky question.   Our Discover Snow Sports Sessions allow you to try both sports within 2 hours 15 minutes, which is great… but then you have to decide.  Hmmm?  Which one did you prefer?

We would like to help make an informed decision.  So what are the differences between skiing and snowboarding…

Firstly, Skiing and Snowboarding are alike – they are both downhill – but very different sports.

When Stationary:

Snowboarders either sit down or expend energy standing on their heel or toe edge to stay upright.  Skiers on the other hand, can stay still fairly easily with the assistance of their poles (and the fact that their feet are not strapped together).



Walking and skiing are similar, as both require independent leg movements, so for most people ski basics are quickly learned.  After learning to snow plough (very important) and turn you are ready to consolidate your skills.

The one issue with skiing is that you can dodge along with a bad technique on the blue and red runs, but as soon as you try something steeper, it becomes very obvious that you are not a great skier.  It is important to progress through a lesson structure to ensure that you are able to keep up with the pros.  Click here for information on our lesson structure.  

Learning to snowboard is usually tricky to begin with due to the (what can only be described as) unnatural feeling of having both your feet strapped to a board.

Snowboarders use two types of turns – Heel edge (facing forwards) and toe edge (facing backwards).  Click here for information on our lesson structure.   Learning can be a bruising process, with lots of falling on your behind.  But once you have your balance, all the bumps and bruises will be more than worth it.

Navigating Flat Ground:

Flats do not pose much of a threat to skiers – you have your poles to push you along.  Snowboarders on the other hand hate flat ground with a passion.  There is nothing more annoying than having to unstrap your foot and push yourself along mid-run.


For skiers, the worst part of your day is walking in your ski boots (not to mention dropping your skis or poles on the way).  Chairlifts, button lifts, T-Bars do not pose a problem and are reasonably comfortable to ride.

For snowboarders, the dreaded button lift and T-Bar are a pain in the groin (or the source of embarrassment until you get the hang of them).


Pow vs ice:

Snowboarders are all about the POW, whereas skiers are better on ice and hard packed snow.


Which is easier on the knees?

Snowboarding is not as harsh on your knees as skiing, but your wrists and upper body can suffer instead.

Adrenaline Junkies


Angus Malloch – Image Steve McKenna

Most people view snowboarding as the adrenaline junkie’s choice.  Although snowboarding is more popular in the park, skiing is catching up. However, skiing remains top dog if you are looking for speed and only speed.

There are good and bad aspects to both sports… just go with you heart.  Which do you love most?  Are you a skier or a snowboarder?