Snowboard Trick Terminology

Snowboard Trick Terminology

If you are new to freestyle snowboarding, chances are you're a bit confused as to what you call certain tricks. For example, what is Frontside and Backside? Is it a Tucked Knee Indy or a Japan? Learning the freestyle lingo is like learning a whole new language. Don't worry, this blog is your Rosetta Stone to snowboard jargon.

(Narrating/Riding: Duncan Mainland, Nev Lapwood, Connor Palahicky . Film/Edit: Vince Emond. Filmed At: Whistler Blackcomb


Regular and Goofy are used to describe which direction you prefer to ride in. If you're Regular, you'll prefer to ride with your left foot leading. If you're Goofy, it'll be your right foot.

You can spin 2 different directions on your Training Board or snowboard, Frontside or Backside. We're going to break down this terminology for both jumping and jibbing so you don't get confused.

Frontside And Backside - Jumping

Frontside is when your chest faces forward, or down the hill during the first 90 degrees of your spin.

Frontside Spin 
Stomp It Out Like A Boss.

Backside is when your back faces forward, or down the hill during the first 90 degrees of your spin.

Backside Spin 
Landing On A Backside Rotation Will Have A Blind Landing.

Frontside And Backside - Jibbing

You can also jump on to the Balance Bar or park feature Frontside or Backside. However, it has nothing to do with how you spin but the side of the feature you approach from.

If you jump on the feature when it's in front of you, it will be a Frontside trick. 

The Feature Is In Front You, As You Approach.

If you jump on the feature when it's behind you, it's a Backside trick, regardless of the direction you spin.

The Feature Is Behind You, As You Approach.

Rotation Versus Counter Rotation

You can also spin using different techniques. Rotation is where your whole body and board move in the same direction. Counter Rotation is where your upper and lower body move in opposite directions.

Counter Rotation
Counter Rotation Is Where Your Upper And Lower Body Are Twisting Against Each Other.

Switch and Fakie

In snowboarding, the term Fakie and Switch are essentially the same thing. You're riding in your least comfortable position. The term comes from skateboarding where you can easily change your stance, standing near the tail or nose of the board. In snowboarding, you simply don't have that option. You're stuck where the bindings are. 

Switch, Regular and Fakie
You Can't Ride Fakie While Snowboarding, So Fakie And Switch Are The Same Thing.

Basic Jibbing 

A 50-50 is one of the easiest Jib tricks, landing with your board lengthwise or parallel with the box or rail. You can do 50-50's Frontside or Backside.

Flat Base, Going Straight Down The Feature.

A Boardslide is when you pop the nose of your board over the feature, landing perpendicular to it. Boardslides can be done both Frontside (called a Front Board) and Backside, which is just called a Boardslide.

Approaching Backside, Bring Your Nose Over The Top, To The Other Side Of The Feature.

A Lipslide is similar to a Boardslide, except you pop the tail of your board over the feature instead of the nose. Lipslides can be done Frontside, or Backside.

Approaching Backside, Bring Your Tail Over Top To The Other Side Of The Feature.

A Nose Press is when you balance on just the nose of your board. Your board is parallel with the Balance Bar or feature.

Nose Press
The Nose, Knows.

A Tail press is where you balance on just the tail of your board.

Tail Press
If You Lean Too Far Back, You'll End Up On Your Back.

Noseslides are essentially just a Boardslide, where you're centred over your front foot or nose of the board. Like any good trick, it can be done frontside or backside. Think 90 degree nose press.

Coach Duncan Making It Look Steezy.

A Tailslide is the same as a Noseslide, just you jump on the feature with your back foot. Frontside Tailslide, backside Tailslide or just Back Tail.

Frontside Tailslide.

Advanced Jibbing 

Bluntslides are when you jump all the way across the rail or box, landing on just the tail of your board. Front Blunt is getting on the balance bar or feature when it's in front of you. Back Blunt is getting on the Balance Bar or feature when it's behind you.

Hit That Bluntslide

A Pretzel is when you pop off a Board or Lipslide, spinning 270 in the opposite direction you jumped on. Front Board Pretzel, Back Board Pretzel, Back Lip Pretzel, Front Lip Pretzel.

All This Talk Of Food Is Making Me Hungry.

Same Way is when you spin a 270 out of the trick, the same way you spun on. This trick is also called a Bagel, it's even referred to as a Danish. The trick works great out of a Front or Back Blunt.

Switch Ups, or Change Ups, are when you switch between tricks, without jumping off the rail or box in between. Play around with these and see what you come up with.

180's and 270's on and off are self explanatory until you start doing them hard way. Hardway spin is when you spin "the hard way" the same direction as you would for a Lipslide. Some examples would be Hardway Frontside 180, Hardway Backside 270.

If It Was Easy, Everyone Would Do It.

Has your brain exploded yet? No? Good! That means you're more of a snowboarder than you thought you were. Or maybe you knew it all along. If you're as new as Donald Trump in Office, this should be more than enough to get you started. 

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Jesse-Ray Townsend
Snowboard Addiction
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