Snowboard Stomp Pads
This is an item which often causes much debate on snowboarding forums. The ‘Cool Kids’ think they are a waste of time and make you look un-cool.
Others who have had major slips when leaving the chair lift and hitting the icy surface which greets them think they are very desirable.
So a stomp pad is an accessory that you can stick to your snowboard and it allows you to ‘stomp’ your foot down on it to shake off excess snow. When you jump free of the chairlift your back foot is not attached to your snowboard so this is the actual moment when the stomp pad comes into play. You stomp your foot, or scrape your foot against the raised surface of the stomp pad to free-off the loose snow which gives you more grip to be able to snowboard away from the chairlift area to a quieter place where you can attach your boots to your bindings properly. The chairlift area is a busy place rather like the end of an escalator where the first arriving and previously arriving people are always hanging around trying to get out of the way of the next people arriving. It’s good to be able to escape that area quickly and head for a better place to get yourself set for your snowboarding.
So un-cool or sensible?
To some, a stomp pad is an essential piece of equipment in snowboarding. It gives the rider the desired control they feel they need. One reason that a stomp pad is so essential is the regulations governing most snowboarding resorts. In most cases, they will have strict guidelines of having at least one of your feet free from the board when on lifts. Consequently, one needs a way to maintain traction on the board as they dismount the lift. Failing to utilize a stomp pad can cause embarrassing slips, falls or collisions with other people to the amusement of other snowboarding enthusiasts.
The stomp pad is normally placed in the middle of the bindings. The most appropriate place to position them is near the heel. When a rider, especially a newbie jumps form the lift, the pad provides the extra traction to keep one in balance. This allows the rider to glide some distance away from other riders to strap on their foot to the snowboard boot. However, using the stomp pad is not as easy as it sounds. It does require at least a day of practice before getting onto the lift. The best way to practice using the stomp pad is learning to place the heel on the stomp pad without ever looking at it. This involves placing the foot on the stomp pad a few times until one feels they have become a natural at it. The reason for this is that every time one looks down to place the foot on the stomp pad, it causes a lot of delay. In addition, it leads to a loss of balance and maybe an embarrassing fall, thus defeating the purpose of the stomp pad.
If the snowboard does not come pre-installed with a stomp pad, one should acquire it. It is relatively inexpensive and quite easy to install; it requires only a bit of adhesive to stick to the snowboard. When placing the stomp pad, the first step is to place the foot in the snowboard, mark the spot near where the center of the back heel. This is in order to avoid placing the stomp pad too close to the bindings, which will make it difficult to use the stomp pad. The next step is to wipe off all dirt from the snowboard. This activity should preferably be carried out indoors. Any snow should be wiped off the board’s surface. Make sure to position the stomp pad correctly on the marked spot. In most cases, most stomp pads come with their own adhesive material on both sides. Proceed to unwrap it and place it on the spot. If it falls off, the first step would be to glue it back on. If the stomp pad becomes unreliable and falls off severally, the best advice would be to acquire a new one because it is relatively inexpensive.
Types of Stomp Pads
The cheapest stomp pads available are foam stomp pads. As the name suggests, they are made of foam material. These pads do not last long, hence making them great for people on short holidays on a ski resort. In addition to being relatively inexpensive, these type of stomp pads come in a wide array of designs and sizes. Riders will definitely find a pad suited to their needs. The only disadvantage with a stomp pad that it might keep one from showing off their cool snowboard graphics. In addition, the foam stomp pads wear out fast and usually require frequent replacement. However, foam material has a tendency to leave behind an unattractive residue when it comes time to replace them. Consequently, getting rid of it is a long process that involves the application of acetate to the board.
One of the best options currently available in the market are rubber stomp pads. They offer great grip, in addition rubber grips come with a transparent option. For people who love showing off the great graphics on their board, this one of the best options available. Rubber stomp pads are quite long lasting. This makes them ideal for riders who practice snowboarding on a regular basis. They are also recommended for people who work in ski resorts for extended periods. By using studded rubber stomp pads, one can increase grip exponentially. They come in a wide array of designs and shapes which should serve the requirements of most feet
Another way of getting the traction needed on the snowboard is using stomp pad studs. Essentially, these are smaller individual studs, mostly made of rubber. A rider can stick them to the board, as they wish, to create amazing designs. Besides rubber studs, some of them are made of metallic material. These studs can be mixed to come up with creative designs according to the rider’s preference. In addition, these individual stomp pad studs are quite easy to apply. In addition, one can incorporate the board’s existing design when placing their custom stomp pads. Stomp pad studs also occupy a relatively smaller surface compared to traditional stomp pads. Consequently, the glue used affects a minimal section of the board’s surface.
Traditionally, stomp pads are associated with newbies. They are to snowboarding, just as training wheels are to bicycles. However, they are worth the effort. They ensure that one has a lot of good, clean fun on their resort holiday and that they come back home without any nasty bruises. Combined with the right snowboard, stomp pads can be quite useful in helping people advance their skiing prowess. Besides getting off the chair lift much easier, stomp pads are also great when snowboarders want to improve their other skills such as taking sharp turns. For beginners without these stomp pads, it can be quite tricky. The pads give the rider added control and allows them to stop on command. They make the transfer of energy from the foot to the board more efficient. In essence, they allow the rider to become one with the board. However, it is important to note that a rider should always look towards where they want to go and not focus too much on the stomp pad. That last point takes some practice to accomplish but it’s rather like driving a car while looking down at the foot pedals – always keep your eyes on the road!