The Advantages of Reverse Camber Snowboards

The Advantages of Reverse Camber Snowboards

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Reverse camber snowboards are the wave of the future.

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Snowboard design has come a long way since the days of the one-directional, swallowtail boards that dominated the late 1970s and early 1980s. Today there are hundreds of designs, especially when it comes to board shapes and bottom contours. Every boarder's riding style and the type of terrain he or she is riding effects the way the board reacts, so it is imperative that every snowboarder is outfitted with the correct board to fit his or her style. One of the designs on the market is the reverse camber, or “rocker,” design. Beginners, novices, freestylers and powder riders should especially take note and get accustomed to the reverse camber board.

Let's Rock

Although it's considered new technology, snowboarders have been rocking out with reverse camber boards since pioneer and “Father of Freestyle” Terry Kidwell introduced his original rocker design in 1984. Traditional snowboards are designed to have a downward facing arc, or camber, between the board's bindings. In Kidwell's negative camber design, the board's tips gradually rise from the board's center, giving it a “U” shape. Reverse camber boards are called “rockers” because they resemble the bottom of a rocking chair.

From the Bunny Hill

Reverse camber boards are especially beneficial to beginner or novice riders, making it a popular sight on the bunny hill. The negative camber design brings the board's contact points inward toward the center of the board, making it considerably easier to control. Because the board's tips are slightly elevated, the chances of catching an edge are significantly less; and reverse camber boards have a softer flex and are much more forgiving than traditional camber boards.

To the Park

While beginners and novices certainly benefit from reverse camber boards, the most seasoned freestyle riders might be the design's biggest proponents. It doesn't take a physicist to know that softer flex makes for easier jibs and presses; and elevated tips are perfectly tailored for effortless butters. Freestyle boards make up some of the hottest designs on the market today, and nearly every freestyle board is designed with some variation of reverse camber.

To the Backside of the Mountain

Riders are strapping into reverse camber boards all over the mountain, especially on powder days. Just like how they allow for easier turns, raised tips are ideal for riding in deep powder or on ungroomed trails. While camber boards have a tendency to nose-dive into powder, rocker boards float over the top of the snow and provide an element of lift in freshly fallen, unpacked snow. Reverse camber boards should be the design of choice for riders heading out in the morning after a fresh snowfall.