Let me introduce myself. My name is Laura. Here’s what you need to know about me before reading on. I’m a girl. I snowboard. I’m good at it. Actually, I’m great at it. I’m not good at it like- I’ve done it a couple times and can get down the bunny hill in one piece. I am good at it like- I have been snowboarding since I was seven years old and crush the mountain. My twin sister Sara and my girls (friends) are great riders as well. Every time we are on the mountain we push each other … challenging each other to the next thing. So why is this always the conversation I find myself in?
Boy “I love snowboarding. I go all the time.”
Me “Awesome! Me too! Where do you go?
Boy “Wait. What? You snowboard?”
Me “Well, yes I do.”
Boy “You snowboard for real or you sort of know how?”
Me “I snowboard for real. And if I felt like continuing this conversation- which I don’t- I would tell you I’ve been snowboarding for almost 20 years and I would beat you to the base spraying you in the eyes the whole way down.”
There’s no doubt that snowboarding is a male dominated activity. The culture itself is very masculine. Big clothes. Charging mentality. Reckless behavior. Well guess what? Girls want a piece of that too. So why is it that girl riders are either Burton sponsored with Olympic medals around their necks or they’re showing up to the hill in leggings with no experience?
LISTEN! There is a middle ground here and it’s me! I ride a #Burton Feelgood board - one of the first generation models. Ride as much as I can every season. Footing- regular. But can ride goofy a bit too. I love powder but a nice sunny day in the park is more my style. Although a big West Coast powder day is probably the most incredible moment of life: helmet on, buds in your ears, usually listening to Biggie. Nothing beats it. I’m definitely more of a rail rider. But the older I get, the more I appreciate cruising down the mountain with my sisters.
All that, to say this. My whole life I have felt like I need to justify the fact that I am a great rider. I have felt like I need to prove to people that I can really snowboard. That ends here. Girls, if you ride- awesome. If you want to learn- awesome. If you’re already a monster- awesome. But let’s stop explaining to easily confused males that we can ride “for real.” Deal?
Weigh in ladies. I’d like to hear your stories.
Safe and happy riding. #Snowboarding. #BoardBootie. #SomeThingsJustShouldntBeNaked. #LauraHaefeli.