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New Snowboard a Boon to Newbies

James Callens’14, Staff Writer

Do you see all the snow outside your dorm room window? Doesn’t looking at the overwhelming piles just make you want to shred some powder? But there’s a problem … you haven’t snowboarded before.

Well, have no fear, because Boarder Kontrol will save the day.The Australian company Streetboardz has designed the Boarder Kontrol snowboard for all the novice boarders out there.

The new design takes the intimidation out of learning with instant braking. Naturally, the first time snowboarding is difficult for everyone. Novice boarders meet the hills with terror and pain. One wrong move and you’re eating an unpleasant mix of ice, snow and pride.

Braking and carving can be troubling at first, since it takes a bit of athleticism and technique that beginners might lack. The Boarder Kontrol board consists of a rear-mounted brake blade that digs into the snow. The leash at the end of the brake is activated by the rider and works via an engage and release system.

The brake allows riders to stop and maintain a consistent speed. The leash is detachable so that the board may be used like any other. The brake blade is curved which assists in leaning over your front foot to turn and carve. While descending, the rider can pull up on the leash at any time to activate the rear-mounted brake.

However, the slit across the width (when the brake is removed) would prevent the board from functioning as smoothly as a standard snowboard.

Thomas Roby, a Merrimack College student and avid snowboarder, said the board seemed “innovative and easy to use. But it should only be used for the first day to get beginners comfortable riding.” The Boarder Kontrol board comes in sizes ranging from 110cm to 155cm. The board is set to launch this winter at ski resorts, as opposed to the commercial markets.

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