December 7, 2021

How to Choose Snowboard Bindings

by Kevin

Table of Contents

Given that the binding you choose is a proper fit for your boots, snowboard, and type of snowboarding, it will be able to transfer energy and accurately respond to your body movements. Snowboard bindings play a key role in connecting you to your board. 

Getting to know which binding is the proper fit for your snowboard and snowboarding style is important. In fact, it will result in better control and riding experience.  The guide below will cover everything you have to know concerning snowboard bindings, the types and will help you determine which one suits you best.

Sizing for Snowboard Boots

What's Gender Got to Do with Snowboard Bindings

Your snowboard boot size will directly determine the size of your snowboard binding. You must know the size when choosing a binding. For instance, a typical snowboard binding that’s averagely sized falls between sizes 7-9. In this case, the binding will fit correctly with boots sized either 7, 8, or 9.

Assuming you know the size of your snowboard boots, you can now get the correct size for the binding. Snowboard bindings are somewhat easy to size since various brands indicate what type of snowboard boot a binding will perfectly fit. Each brand will have a sizing chart.

However, not all bindings will fit on the board based on size. Some snowboard boots are bulkier, which results in a fluctuation in the fit. Nonetheless, you can combat this by adjusting the snowboard binding for the correct fit. Adjustment can be made on the straps and the high back area to offer more or less room, depending on how the boot fits.

What’s Gender Got to Do with Snowboard Bindings?

There are male, women’s, and children’s snowboard bindings available, each offering a bit of a precise fit. Similarly, as you’d like to obtain the ideal snowboard, you also have to acquire the appropriate bindings for your gender so you can install the proper snowboard bindings.

  • Male’s snowboard bindings: because snowboard boots for males are bulkier and broader to support their foot type, the male’s bindings will have a wider fit. The footwear size will determine the snowboard binding size. 
  • Snowboard bindings for women: This is a set of slim-fitting snowboard bindings designed for women to fit better with their snowboard boots. They differ from the men’s binding and even guarantee a perfect fit for ladies’ feet. The binding can be sized based on the boot size. 
  • Snowboard bindings for children: Children’s bindings are smaller than adults, but they provide the same benefits. Such bindings are intended to fit children’s boots and can be adjusted accordingly when kids are snowboarding, occasionally with just one strap depending on the sizing.

Choosing Snowboard Bindings Based on Snowboarding Style and Level of Flex

Snowboard Binding Options by Using the Following Riding Techniques
  • The flex of a snowboard binding ought to be optimal for your skill level and the surface you ski. It must also be compatible with the flex of your footwear.
  • Novices and freestylers prefer bindings with shorter, pliable high backs (plates placed vertically on the ankle) for a gentler, smoother ride and quick recovery during leaps and flips.
  • For accurate control in fresh snow, at high speeds, and on challenging terrain, riders and downhillers prefer bindings with rigid high backs.

You Can Narrow Down the Snowboard Binding Options by Using the Following Riding Techniques:

  • All-mountain: suitable on all terrains, especially groomed trails, powder, parks, and pipes. Binding flex limits vary depending on your level of experience and desired depending on the intended fit. Most riders prefer mild to moderate flex, whereas racers want firm flex.
  • Freestyle: ideal for leaps, flips, acrobatics, and park elements like half-pipes, rails, and boxes. Freestyle bindings usually have a gentle flex for easier turning and mobility.
  • Freeride and split boarding are ideal for exploring unlabeled backcountry and side-country areas. Bindings are firmer to provide more maneuverability.
  • Powder: these bindings are often firmer to provide more maneuverability on broader, longer boards that float in fresh snow, snowboarding on powder is a great experience.

Which are the Snowboard Bindings Categories

Choosing Snowboard Bindings Based on Snowboarding Style and Level of Flex

Strap bindings

These are the most popular types of snowboard bindings. A strap binding has a ratcheting strap that locks your footwear in position; the high backs remain unmoved. Strap bindings offer a variety of adjustability choices and good stability and padding.

However, physically buckling and unbuckling the strap can be difficult, besides taking a lot of time, if you are wearing gloves or in extremely cold weather. The strap binding works well with both softer and firmer-flexing footwear.

Speed-entry binding

This binding resembles strap binding but includes tilting high backs, enabling fast in-and-out footwear ingress. It’s a favorite for casual riders. It features a yoke mechanism that ensures your feet are stabilized in these bindings by distributing consistent pressure throughout the forefoot.

However, its con is that it is considerably bulkier than strap binding and, according to performance-oriented riders, it hinders board maneuverability. A Speed-entry binding works well with either soft or firm-flexing footwear.

Split board bindings

The split board binding is only intended to be used with split board-style snowboards. If changed to ride mode, this binding allows the rider to “split” or ski up the steep and ride down. Split board binding hinges at the toe tip of the baseplate during upward tour mode, enabling the “split” to lift the heels in a much more comfortable striding move. 

The heels are closed down whenever the bindings are switched to ride function. As a result, it acts like typical snowboard bindings. The main advantage of a split board binding is that it is frequently responsive. It caters to intense mountainous riding and includes a range of functions and settings that traditional strap snowboard bindings lack.

Interoperability of Snowboard Bindings and Boards

A binding baseplate is made of bolts that connect to a binding contact on the snowboard and allow you to adjust your posture on the snowboard. So, make sure that you check if the baseplate works with the contact on the selected snowboard. As with snowboards, there are four different designs of binding mounting mechanisms. Both types allow for varying degrees of postural flexibility.

Which are the Snowboard Bindings Categories

The four holes

The “2 x 4” and “4 x 4” mounting mechanisms are the most prevalent and used by most companies. As a result, many snowboard bindings are generally interoperable with most snowboards.

The design of the “2 x 4” and “4 x 4” mounts have a four-hole mountain setup. The bindings in his case are bolted to the board with four screws. 

The 3D mount design

The 3D mounting design is somewhat rare. The insertion design is unique, and just three screws are needed to secure the binding on the board.

Several binding companies design their binding discs (what secures the baseplates of the binding to the board) to be suitable for the four holes and three-hole mount methods, allowing their binding to be used on both.

The channel design 

The channel design makes use of channels or tracks that run the length of the board at the insertion points (points where the holes on other mounting systems would be).

The Channel design features almost infinite stance possibilities and little dead-zone interaction with the snowboard. That way, the snowboard can flex without interference from the bindings. Further, some manufacturers use “universal discs” to make their binding compatible with all mounting designs.

Depending on the binding, you may have to purchase a separate disc to ensure it is Channel System capable. Although other brands also appear to produce these, acquiring the converter disc appears to be an additional cost.

Fitting Tips for Snowboard Bindings

A snowboard binding must be able to suit your boot’s size. An appropriate binding should grasp a boot firmly and securely without pushing or squeezing the footwear into position. The binding should enable your boot to bend but not wobble or move.

Once tightened, a binding strap must not dangle excessively. If the straps end up being too long when the bindings are tightened to your footwear, search for a new pair of bindings. Bindings for landing feature proportions and high backs tailored to a female’s calf and boots.

The most popular style of snowboard binding is the strap snowboarding binding. They normally have two straps, one around the ankle and one around the toes. The ankle straps run over the top of the boots, securing the feet in the binding heel cup region on the high back.

The toe cap straps ratchet over the boot’s toe, guaranteeing that the tips and middle of the feet are firmly fitted into the bindings and limiting any unwanted forward or lateral motion. The strap-in binding is available in a range of comfort, padding, and pricing levels, giving them an excellent choice for all riding styles and ability levels.

Final Thoughts on Snowboard Bindings

Now, you have a better understanding of selecting a snowboard binding. When choosing a binding, you have to narrow down your specifications. It’s not just about flex; you have to consider the upsides and downsides of the binding you select. Again, choosing the right size and ensuring compatibility with the board are factors you must consider.

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About the author 

Kevin

Kevin loves bouldering. Mainly because he can practice it alone without considering other people. Although he rediscovered this hobby in the last three years, the boulders turned out to be his most visited landmarks.

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