Many people see snowboarding as the best way to tolerate and enjoy the winter. One could be annoyed with the snow on the road and the daunting task of shoveling the snow from the driveway each day. But for most snowboarders, winter is the most pleasurable and enjoyable season to play in the snow.
Snowboarding can be a good family pastime. You can go snowboard with your family and treat it as a simple winter vacation in the snowy mountains. It’s a good alternative to long strolls in the park and outdoor sports once the snow starts falling because snowboarding is considered as an extreme sport. It offers a great challenge to people who practice it, as this sport requires skill, agility, and focus. Best of all, it boosts the mood of the snowboarders as recent research study reveal benefits of snowboarding in consonance with spending time with nature.
If people will be asked to choose between snowboarding and skiing, one will choose snowboarding without any hesitation. Some of the reasons people would comment for liking snowboarding over skiing is the practicality of the sport itself. With skiing, you can only practice it with one sport. Yet in snowboarding, once you mastered the basics, learning how to surf, to skate and other board sports will be easier. Compared to skiing, where you have to be aware at all times with the pole you are holding, with snowboarding you don’t have to hold anything and just enjoy the scenery as you move down the slope.
Others commented about the gears of snowboarding for liking the sport. A lot of snowboarders invest highly in their snowboarding gear not just to look cool but to keep their best performance. And among the snowboarding gears that you must be keen in selecting which is best, choosing the best snowboard bindings is the foremost step that you should not ignore.
5 Best Snowboard Bindings
1. Flow Alpha MTN 2018 Snowboard Bindings
This one is the latest model from a reputable brand, Flow Alpha. It features a composite plastic baseplate and a low flex of rating 2 due to which it is highly lasting as well as forgiving. The baseplate’s rockered design ensures optimal flex and direct transmission of energy to the board. The baseplate is also padded and fully reclines for effortless entry and exit. The single-piece hi-back and EVA pads ensure additional comfort as well as support.
The binding also comes with the effortless rear entry system of MTN, which means no need of tightening ratchets. Further, the locking cable system enables quick opening of the cable for instant access to the binding. The extra powerful strap locks the boots as well as slap ratchets for giving additional security. Its exoskeleton support gives superb ankle support and precise fit. The binding is ideal for beginners.
- Ideal for all riding styles due to 1-piece baseplate
- Easy to use
- Heavier than several other bindings
2. Burton Snowboard Freestyle Binding
Try this one if you are a freestyle rider. However, do expect a bit more adjustability and flex that found in normal freestyle bindings. With low flex rating, this model is quite forgiving. It also works for other riding styles. Further, the Re Flex design, universal compatibility with mountain systems, and good shock absorption capability make it ideal for beginners.
The baseplate is EVA padded and is composed of the only polycarbonate due to which the bindings are uniformly consistent. The strap with a strong Flex Slider ensures simple entry and exit. For toes, the convertible strap takes care of comfort and locked-in fitting. The bindings are adjustable for a higher forward lean for shaping performance and even zero lean for a relaxed cruise.
- Stable on all terrains
- Easy to use
- Lots of cushioning
- Highly durable
- Zero lean high back for park riders and beginners
- High back not folding appropriately for transport
3. K2 Hurrithane Snowboard Best Bindings
Ideal for surfy twists and immediate and advanced riders, this model from K2 is super fun for those who like the bindings nearer to the freestyle side of the all mountain gamut. Its softness is such that its response is a bit slower than expected. However, the canted, ergonomically-designed footbed give far better cushioning than what is normal.
These K2 bindings are quite flexible. The urethane highback is supportive and is commendably soft to give a highly natural feel of just you on the board. The angle is downwards for ensuring comfort and less fatigue to the feet. The bindings also have a footbed with universal toe straps such that you do not have to take care of many adjustments. If you wish, you can re-align the ankle strap and wear the toe straps in front or atop.
- Easy entry
- Not so strong build
4. Rome Snowboards United Bindings
Full with tech features and form-fitting straps, this model can help you defeat the slopes. The several strap positions with more than two straps for customization ensure an ideal support level. To this, add the flexibility of full highback rotation allows adjusting it for ideal heel side turns regardless of the bindings angle.
Power and twisting ability are due to the bindings’ flex rating of 5 and responsive design. This gives you an ideal blend of liveliness and power for getting the required control and accuracy for a freeriding style. The bindings come with a one-piece baseplate that adds to lightweightedness and smooth response in any direction.
Other salient features are EVA padding and cushioning, rubber-based protection, superlight United Asym Highback aligning automatically, fast adjust strap length, shock absorption, flexible ankle straps for effortless terrain park experience, and instant control over forward lean.
- Responsive and flex
- Highback forward lean
- Toe and ankle support
- Insufficient strap
5. 5th Element Best Stealth 3 Snowboard Bindings
This one is a stylish and economical model for beginners. Composed of plastic, this model features a low flex as well as a forgiving design for those who have just started to learn. The jumbo-sized ratchets make these bindings are easy to install.
The convertible toe straps push your toes for comfort and proper ankle support, while pushing the boots into the heel area. This mechanism ensures effective transmission of energy to the snowboard. Other salient features are fitting to all boot shapes, EVA padding in the baseplate, and 4-hole disc design. The toe straps are usable as straps over the toes or as straps of toe cap style.
The bindings also feature forward lean adjustment for achieving the right stance. The one-piece baseplate brings down vibrations while accelerating or retaining control.
- Soft flex
- Toe and ankle support
- Forward lean adjustment
- Fewer vibrations
- Lack of canted footbed
Best Questions for Snowboard Bindings:
What are the different types of bindings snowboard?
There are different types of snowboard bindings, each of which suits a flex level and a distinct riding style. The major types are beginner, freestyle, freeride, and all-mountain. The beginner bindings are cheapest, most flexible, and come with a reasonable level of shock absorption capability. Meant for the beginners, these bindings help to find out what is best: speed or park. They usually choose speed-entry bindings.
The freestyle bindings are for those who love to spend their maximum time in the terrain park. They typically have a highly soft flex that facilitates easier landings by forgiving more errors. They also flex naturally to ensure better butterability.
Freeride bindings are for those who enjoy steep and deep riding in the backcountry. They are stiff enough to go with extreme speeds and take care of instant energy transfers over a challenging terrain. The freeride riders usually go for strap-in bindings. On the other hand, all-mountain bindings are for those who wish to enjoy a little bit of everything, right from well-maintained runs to park. They typically come with a medium flex for serving the all-purpose usage.
Which snowboard binding is ideal for me?
Well, this answer is dependent on some of the major buying factors such as weight, riding style, flex level, and experience. How heavy are you influences the type of binding that you should buy. In case you are a lighter rider, a not so stiff binding is ideal. In case you are a heavier rider, a stiff binding having great durability and is responsive under your weight is ideal.
Similarly, even the riding style contributes to your binding type. The kind of riding and the terrain on which you will use the binding play a big role in deciding the ideal binding. For instance, if you are mostly performing terrain park laps with landing tricks, a more lenient and softer binding is ideal than a normal one. In the case of riding a big mountain, somewhat stiffer binding is required to go across the varied terrain areas.
You also need to consider your experience level. With the increasing experience, you would need a stiffer and more responsive model that can bear the setback. Otherwise, a softer and more lenient one is simply fine.
One more important factor to consider is the size of your boot. The size of all bindings differs a bit. Thus, it is vital to go through the size ratings for the decided type of binding.
What degree should I set my snowboard bindings?
Let’s face it: There is no one precise answer applicable to all. This is because it is totally a matter of one’s comfort and effectiveness although it may affect performance to some extent. There are no universal directions for stance angles.
You can set the angles for the bindings to be perpendicular with the board. A majority of riders including the naïve, tend to ride with their feet open to some degree.
Any debate in favor of one stance over another is simply an expression of the author’s or wearer’s own preferences. While these stances are not wrong, they are only applicable to them and the way they prefer to ride. It is like choosing a foot, which is more comfortable than the one in front. It is totally a personal preference despite having some more options than right or left with stance angles.
Honestly saying, do experiment with various stance angles to see the impact on your comfort and your control power over the board. Still, you will not find your best angular degree, as minor adjustments for some years would be required due to change in climate, equipment, your own body, and personal preferences.
Consider making a single adjustment at a time to assess precisely the change that either aids or hurts you. If you are a beginner, consider your learning fundamentals. Switching from one stance to another will not help significantly if you have locked knees, bad posture, or weight on the back foot. If possible, do take a lesson for obtaining some fair tips from a professional.
Snowboarders use two numbers to denote their binding angles, such as -9 back, 12 front or 15, -15. In each of these pairs, the first number is front foot angle, while the second is that of the back foot. -15 denotes 15 degrees angle towards the snowboard’s tail, while 15 indicates 15 degrees towards the snowboard’s nose. Similarly, 0 indicates a straight line away from the snowboard’s toe-side.
If you are looking for numbers, consider getting started with 10 and -10. From here, you can twist the settings to find out what is ideal for you. Some sites also suggest 9-15 degrees for the front foot and 0 to 3 degrees for the back foot for being more comfortable.
For advanced and intermediate riders, the back foot remains more open for riding backwards more smoothly. They prefer 6 to 12 degrees and keep the back-foot angle less open. However, you should choose what is most comfortable for you.
What does EST mean for snowboard bindings?
EST stands for Extra Sensory Technology. It is a term given to bindings made by the Burton brand. These bindings are specifically designed to function with the brand’s Channel mounting system. In these boards, the bindings are affixed to a channel such as track or rail that run side to side across the length of the board.
These bindings are capable of going up and down across the width so that you enjoy an optimum fit on your board. They are known for their highly adjustable nature, widest stance range, fast mounting capability, and the assurance of delivering a better connection.
However, these snowboard bindings are only for the Burton channel system. You can easily identify such bindings via their mounting holes being on the exterior instead of the customary four-screw make, underfoot. There are only two screws that attach an EST binding to the channel system.
Currently, many other brands are offering a base plate disc that seems to function with the channel system apart from the traditional four-screw design. So, you need not worry after buying an EST binding.
How do I adjust my snowboard bindings?
You can adjust the bindings in different ways by setting the right board direction and binding angles and positioning the bindings as per the stance. The adjustment can be easily made with regards to width, angles, setback, and forward lean.
Your stance width affects your balance as well as the center of gravity. If it is wider, you obtain more balance and lower gravity. If it is narrower, maneuvering becomes a bit simpler with a more natural feel. When you first buy your right-sized snowboard, the binding inserts’ reference points are perhaps an ideal point to begin. For most riders, it works to have the stance width a bit wider than that of the shoulder.
You can even adjust your angles that determine your comfortable connection with the board and the manner in which you can turn the board. Typically, the front foot has a bigger angle than that of your back. In case of occasional ride switch, consider the back binding to a lower negative angle. In case of park riding, let the angles for both be same and opposite (for example, 10 in front and -10 in back).
Next, adjust for the setback. The bindings’ position on the board modifies the length of the board’s nose and tail along with the position of your weight over the board. In case of the bindings setback, the weight spreads over the tail that is shorter than the nose. This enables the nose to float. On the other hand, in case of middle bindings, the weight is in the center and both the tail and nose are the same in terms of length.
Finally, you can adjust the binding’s forward lean, the angle at which the binding’s high back resides. If this high back is positioned forward, you are likely to bend your knees. This is likely to give more control for riding fast and creating profound carves. On the other hand, no forward lean results in a more informal posture for a comfortable stance but with less control at greater speeds.
What size snowboard bindings do I need?
Bindings act as connectors for transmitting energy from the muscles to the board. If this is not happening effectively, it means that the bindings are of the wrong size. So, it is vital to get the right size of your bindings. Doing so involves ensuring that the bindings you choose are fitting to both the board and your boots. In short, just get the right sized bindings and board for your boots.
In general, the bindings’ size to choose is totally dependent on the size of your snowboard boot. Thus, it is wise to know the boots’ size first and accordingly select the binding size. For instance, a binding of size Medium may correlate to a range of 7-9 size, which means it will fit nicely if the snowboard boot has a size falling in this range.
Now that you know the boots’ size, it is easy to find the bindings of the right size. Almost all brands disclose the sizes of snowboard boots for which their bindings are suitable. There are also size charts for different brands available on their official sites. It is wise and essential to go through one such chart and then proceed accordingly.
Do snowboard boots fit all bindings?
Honestly, no! Not all bindings will fit each snowboard boot. This is because most boots come in different styles and fits. Boots adapt to bindings that, in turn, adapt to boards. Thus, it is obvious that a bigger-sized boot shall not fit a smaller binding. Thus, it becomes essential to match both precisely.
However, it is possible for bindings to fit in any board with precise plates, which are spherical disks in the bindings’ middle area. However, it can be irritating to find these discs so easily.
Conclusion on our BEST Snowboard Binding Reviewed
While there are many snowboard bindings to consider, you should go as per the major factors that are likely to affect your buying decision. From all the aforementioned reviews, we recommend Flow Alpha MTN 2018 bindings due to its all latest features and being an upgraded version of the brand’s Flite collection.
Just a recall, this model is fully padded, provides fatigue-free experience, and transmits energy efficiently to the board. For the beginners, it is lenient enough to forgive all possible errors, which ensures a safe ride. Above all, its locking system and rear entry mechanism ensure security to both feet and ankles, regardless of the terrain.
In short, you are ensured of super ease of use, comfort, and flawless performance at a truly economical price. Still, it does not mean that you should straightaway buy it. Do compare these features and pros with what you want as well as what your budget is.