After reaching a competition level as a skier and having to be more competitive I began learning to snowboard last year at Tignes, a high altitude resort in the French Alps. I began with my ski boots fixed to a board so my feet were blocked in the fixations like alpine snowboarders have and this probably helped in my getting used to snowboarding. The other people in the group, several of which were eliminated, breaking arms, hurting knees etc. had soft boots so that we may say that it's better to use hard boots at the beginning.
Getting back to learning I didn't find it to hard, at the beginning I wasn't too confidant beginning on the board having the front foot attached and the back boot loose. We practiced going down a hill in this way so that after a while we would balance on the board. At this moment I wasn't very good at snowboarding. Soon the back foot was attached to the board and I started to improve and I finally began to learn. At first doing the dead leaf and then progressing to shifting weight onto the front foot and getting back to the backside and as time went on I started to learn to turn onto my front side and then back onto my backside finally leading to turning confidently.
That's the level I stayed at for the rest of the year since I didn't snowboard until a few weeks a go this year.(it was a week long)
I began from where I left off but this time learning to go in powder and at fist I found it hard until later the same day when I learnt to go in powder snow and carving. We went back to the hotel, this time in Val D'Isère and had lunch after which we got back onto the hills spending time learning to carve the slope and it went on like that for the next few weeks but progressing with the group since some people within it were faster than I was used to (good way to learn to be fast). And I started to move the lower half of my body while at the same time keeping the top half fairly rigid except for the counter balance action in the turns. (it's a little like those skiers on moguls whose legs are like springs, lower half working, top half hardly moving) This was when I began to have my "Gueule de snowboarder", snowboarder's attitude or movements. At this moment I became fairly confident of my skills and I was comfortable until an accident where I was saw a chick and wanted to show off down a hill and I gained speed and it was going well until I hit some ice or caught the back edge at which point I projected my body backwards hitting my head on the snow and sliding a little bit. I felt a little dazed and could still snowboard luckily but it was a slight blow to the ego. Oh well.
Val D'Isère is a large snowboarding domain which is connected to Tignes so that you have a double domain and a few times we went up to a glacier where we found some jumps with powder snow so that we could practice jumps.
Here I managed a few jumps although I didn't yet master any of the moves yet. That would come later. What I mostly learnt was how easy it is to control the board on powder snow and how nice it is compared to the ski pistes.
Moving down from these glaciers were forests which we went through. These are a little challenging if you're not confident on a board or not in cramped conditions such as where there are trees. These tracks are nice if you don't want to worry about skiers and there isn't much noise.
The last two week-ends I've been snowboarding at St. Jean D'Aulps, another resort in France which is part of the Portes du Soleil domain. Here is where I truly learnt to jump doing Indies and even landing a 180 after a little over two weeks of snowboarding.
I guess that since I began snowboarding it has become a passion of mine to become as good as possible, learning to jump, go down pistes etc. I have now seen the spectrum from both sides and so I know how skiers feel but also how snowboarders feel, which parts are harder for them and which are harder for skiers but this is another topic, the clash between skiers and snowboarders and skiers.