Does Skateboarding Help With Snowboarding?

by Ben Smith | Last Updated: May 4, 2022

Yes! Skateboarding is a great way to practice the skills and techniques you need for snowboarding, and it’s very common for people who snowboard to skateboard as well. Learning to ride a snowboard is a complex discipline to master, but you’ll find it much easier to learn the tricks if you’ve practiced on a skateboard.

Continue reading to discover how skateboarding helps you with snowboarding skills, the similarities and differences between each discipline, and why skateboarding is a great summer hobby for snowboarders.

How Does Skateboarding Help With Your Snowboarding?

Snowboarding is a challenging skill to master, but skateboarders have a headstart. Thanks to the core muscles and body movements you use on a skateboard, you may find it much easier to pick up the art of snowboarding. Below we outline some of the skills of skateboarding that help you with snowboarding.

They Have Shared Tricks

The tricks you practice in skateboarding are very similar to those in snowboarding. There may be wheels on the bottom of a skateboard, but many of the skills for executing tricks on both of these boards are similar.

The most significant difference between a skateboard and a snowboard is how we deal with the edges. However, tricks like rails, halfpipes, and spinning are very similar in both disciplines.

There are movements you practice in skateboarding, such as extending your legs to gain speed on a halfpipe or rotating your upper body for hopping on and off boxes, transition to snowboarding very easily.

And you’ll find that if you practice skateboarding in the off-season, your skills will transfer back to your snowboard in the winter.

Both Sports Practice Riding Switch

Riding switch is when a rider swaps from their normal stance – or “regular foot” – to a “goofy stance” – meaning they lead with the opposite foot to usual. When you practice this movement on ramps at the skatepark, it helps you build the skill for snowboarding.

Many of the skills you practice on a skateboard will help you become an all-around better skier.

Increases Your Balance

Both of these sports are excellent ways to increase your balance, thanks to the range of movements and muscles that you use within the discipline.

The muscles you use when you shift your weight to stabilize yourself on a snowboard are seldom used outside of the practice. One of the only other activities that allows you to build and strengthen these muscles is skateboarding.

You can opt for a balance board or Bosu Ball to keep your stability muscles strong, but skateboarding can be much more fun and allow you to do something you enjoy while maintaining your strength and balance.

They Share A Similar Stance

Getting used to how a skateboard feels will help to prepare you for riding a snowboard. By practicing with the former, a skateboard won’t feel so strange, and you’ll get used to the stance in much less time.

The two disciplines also share several similarities in steering, primarily how you distribute your weight between the back and front of the board.

What Are The Differences Between Skateboarding And Snowboarding?

The most significant difference between these two sports is that skateboarding is done on concrete, and you aren’t attached to the board, so you can bail on a trick at any point. Whereas snowboarding is done on snow, and your feet are connected to the board.

In snowboarding, you’ll tend to go a lot faster, and you won’t need to push as you do with skateboarding – this discipline is all about gettings used to the feel of the board and learning how to stay in control.

The Size Of Your Snowboard Matters

When it comes to skateboarding, the size of your board really comes down to personal preference, but when you’re snowboarding, the size of the board you choose is essential.

If you’re riding on powder and need to stay on top of it, opt for a larger board, but if you want to freestyle and practice your tricks, you’ll want to opt for a smaller board.

Slowing Down Is A Different Discipline

When you want to slow down on a skateboard, you can use your foot, which feels like quite a natural thing to do. But, when you want to slow down on a snowboard, you’ll need to press the edge into the snow and lean your weight backward slightly.

The other difference between riding these two boards is that your feet are wider apart on a snowboard as you need to make regular weight changes, but this is not good practice for skateboarding.

You Need To Use Your Entire Body To Make A Turn

When you pivot on a skateboard, it’s relatively straightforward to lead in the direction you want to turn while applying a bit of pressure. But, when you want to pivot on a snowboard, you have to use the weight of your whole body to make a turn.

Which Is More Difficult – Snowboarding Or Skateboarding?

There’s no straight answer to this question. Some people take more readily to skateboarding, while others find it easier to learn how to ride a snowboard.

In general, though, it’s easier learning how to ride a skateboard as many of the moves feel more natural. Getting started is about pushing off the ground with your foot and cruising along. You learn how to distribute balance by making small weight changes and changing the position of your body slightly.

Whereas, when you ride a skateboard, there are several additional challenges. First of all, it’s hard to control your speed and easy to go too fast. Secondly, you don’t know how to stop – it’s not as simple as using your foot to slow you down.

Snow is softer than concrete, but it still hurts when you take a fall at speed.

Having said that, it can be far more challenging to learn tricks on a skateboard than it is on a snowboard. Say you’re attempting a boardslide; you need far more control on a skateboard and have to commit more to the movement.

Completing a boardslide on a snowboard requires a smaller jump and provides a larger sliding area. Plus, your feet are strapped to the board, so you have to commit to it once you start a move, whereas it’s much easier to bail on a skateboard.

You’ll likely find the basics of skateboarding easier to master, but once you practice on both boards, you may find that tricks are far easier on a snowboard.

If I Can Snowboard, Will I Be Able To Skateboard?

Snowboarders hate the summer because it takes away the ability to practice their favorite sport, and that’s why many snowboarders turn to skateboarding through the summer months.

If you’re thinking about picking up a skateboard for the first time – go for it. If you’re used to the maneuvers of a snowboard, you should be able to pick up skateboarding reasonably quickly.

And while the tricks may be more difficult, you might find that this makes snowboarding tricks feel more manageable once you return to the snow.

What Are The Advantages Of Doing Both Sports?

If you’re a skateboarder, there are many advantages to picking up snowboarding as a hobby. The primary reason skateboarders choose this discipline is that it allows them to maintain their strength and balance through the winter when skateboarding pickings are slim.

Not only will you maintain an excellent level of strength and stability, but you may find that the skills you learn when snowboarding translate to your skateboard when you return.

But remember, never push yourself too hard. Snowboarding is not for everyone and if you find you can’t quite master the basics or aren’t enjoying this winter sport, stick to the skateboard.

Final Thoughts

If you’re a skateboarder, you’ll most definitely have an easier time learning how to snowboard than a complete novice. It may take a bit of effort to get started, but your core strength and balance will put you in good stead. And once you master the basics, you’ll likely find that tricks are much easier to perform on the snow than on the concrete.

Ben is the owner of and has been skateboarding on and off for around 15 years now. It is on this site where he documents what he learns in hopes that others will be able to benefit from it. In his free time, he is skating, watching UFC, or just hanging out with the fam.