The fun part
You made it to the top.
Sweet, that was the easy part.
Now you can finally strap in that back foot! You got your feet strapped in and you’re sitting there looking down the mountain. Looks a lot steeper from the top than it did from the bottom, right? Right.
Now you’re sitting there all strapped in looking down the hill. So stand up keeping your heel-side firmly in the snow. Keep the pressure on your heels, and using your ankles and toes, keep your toe-side up, out of the snow. Your weight should be balanced over the center of your board, 50-50 on each foot. Now shifting your weight to about 60% on your front foot, you will notice the board starting to glide in that direction. Your heel-side edge will begin to glide. Now shift your weight the other way 60% on the other foot, and you will notice yourself starting to glide in the other direction. Keep doing this, back and forth, and you are now doing the falling leaf (named such do to the resemblance of a leaf falling), and you are now officially snowboarding in the very barest sense of the term.
Now that you have the falling leaf down, its time to start making turns. Start by shifting your weight back over your front foot again, but this time your going to keep going until your board is going strait down the hill. Keep your knees, hips, and shoulders parallel to the hill. Once the board is flat and going strait, put pressure on your toe-side edge and shift your weight back to the center. Now you will be standing on your toes with your back to the hill. Shift your weight on the front foot again, until the board is going strait, and then put pressure back on the heel-side. You’ve just made your first turns!
Get some air
You have made your first turns and you are confident about riding and totally stoked! You’ve seen, from the lift, those riders getting mad air in the park, and you caught the bug. You want air! Ok, cool, everyone does. First try doing an ollie. This trick is named such do to the similarity of the common skateboard trick. A lot of snowboard terminology is carried over from skateboarding do to the similar ideologies of the sports. Lift the front of your board, called the ‘nose,’ while putting pressure on the ‘tail.’ Give a little hop, and use that pressure to ‘pop’ the board fully into the air.
Jumping is a natural part of the progression. You should perfect the strait air before attempting other, more advanced maneuvers. So find yourself a small hit to jib off of, and stop a little ways above it. It’s always a good idea to check out a jump before you hit it. See what the take-off and landing look like, maybe even just ride over the first time. Once you’re familiar with the jump, approach it from strait on. Keeping your knees bent and your board flat approach it with some speed. Your balance should be centered and as you take off extend your legs a little bit to boost off, reach down and grab your board, spot your landing, extend your legs out and stomp it down flat, you want the nose and tail to touch down at the same time. Flex your knees upon impact to absorb the shock, and you’ve just stuck your first landing. Bam, you’re on your way to pro status.
A real pro has a bag full of tricks at his disposal. Better start practicing your grabs and slides, because there are many tricks to learn.