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What’s the difference between SNOWBOARDS and MOUNTAIN BOARDS?

December 29, 2008

I think you know all you need to know about snowboards, but what do you know about mountain boards? and how many of you are keen and avid participators of this sport?

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This photograph was taken two years ago as our son disappeared 7kms up the beach in Mozambique to join up with some friends – useful things mountain boards!

Back to the discussion…

Mountainboarding is also known as dirtboarding or all-terrain-boarding (ATB), and is a well established extreme sport. It started in 1991 when Jason Lee and Patrick McConnell started making boards to help snowboarders cross-train during the summer months. They subsequently set up the company MBS Mountainboards which is still the industry leader. Almost 18 years later the company is still going strong selling boards into over 30 countries around the world. Many of mountainboarding’s key innovations have been developed by them.

Mountainboarding has developed into a sport in it’s own right with it’s own culture and history which includes racing, freestyle, freeride and kiting disciplines and it is one of the most exciting and fastest growing board sports.

From the early days there has been a competitive element encompassing racing and freestyle. Competitions have been organised in USA since 1993 and in the UK since 1997.

This was posted by humour50 and gives you a very good idea of what mountainboarding is all about.

As you can see from the video,  mountainboarding is snowboarding but done on all-terrain –  grass, dirt or pavement.

It is quite easy to learn particularly for anyone who has good balance. In fact, they say it is much easier to learn than snowboarding. Within one hour most people can carve in both directions and in total control. You only need a 5 degree slope to have enough speed in which to carve and it goes without saying that grass hills are an ideal place to learn! Anything for a soft landing…

It is adviseable to wear protective clothing as you will fall. If you want to go for the whole protective package, mountainboard suppliers have it all: helmet, elbow pads, wrist guards, leather gloves, long pants, knee pads, sturdy shoes, eye protection!

One of the fastest growing areas of mountainboarding is combining the board with a kite or sail. Thanks to fredstem for this video.

Mountainboards range in price from $150 for an entry level kids board with brake system to $550 for the ultimate downhillers board and there are, of course, many price models in between. There are more expensive models too, but beware that you are not being ripped off, if  MBS Mountainboards say the price should be between 150-550 then I think they probably know what they are talking about!

As with any sport that we talk about, mountainboarding can be as extreme as you want it to be. Of course you can go and leap off a cliff within 5 seconds of strapping on a board… but it is adviseable to know what you are doing before you go xtreme.

And if you don’t have enough slope to get the speeds you want, you can always turn to an alternative source of power…

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and this one…

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5 comments

  1. […] View original […]


  2. Nice write up


    • thanks a lot. always nice to have feedback.


  3. we’d love if you’d link us up so people can talk or ask questions about Mountainboarding and get answers from one of our knowledgable members.


    • Thanks, and OK, we’ll work on that link.



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