Snowboard vs. Skateboard – What’s The Difference?

Is skateboarding similar to snowboarding? These two sports are similar in various ways and knowing skateboarding can help to learn snowboarding and vice-versa. Snowboarding is a winter sport where the participants ride their snowboards over the slope of the snow. Skateboarding is an action-adventure freestyle sport, where the participants play by riding their skateboards and also performing stunts.

The good news is that there are similarities between snowboarding and skateboarding and hence, many people use skateboarding as a transition to snowboarding or also practice on it when they cannot snowboard. So, does the skateboarding help snowboarding? Today, let us know a few similarities and also differences between these sports.

Snowboarding vs. Skateboarding

Stance & Balance


One of the things that make snowboarding and skateboarding so closely related is the stance that may refer to as surf stance, standing sideways while facing the travel direction. Even though a snowboard is typically longer than a longboard, your stance of the board is similar in width, which is about the shoulder width. Your feet are closer to the tips on a longboard than on a snowboard.

Another key difference is that your feet on a snowboard are strapped through the bindings, whereas they are free moving on a longboard. As a result, balancing is a bit different since you can lean forward or backward a lot on a snowboard without losing your board, something that you cannot do on a skateboard.

The weight of your boots and bindings on a snowboard will also affect the balancing in different ways while compared to the skateboard.

Basic Riding Skills

Your natural balance is similar while you ride a snowboard or a skateboard. However, while you ride a skateboard you have the 4 wheels rolling on the ground. On a snowboard you ride on the edge of the board- you typically don’t ride on the flat except in the more advanced scenarios. Hence, edge riding is a key difference with skateboarding.

The body motion for carving is very similar on a snowboard and a skateboard. For example, using your head, shoulders, and upper body to initiate the turns. On both, shift your body weight to lean onto an edge to turn. On a skateboard, leaning will make your wheels turn whereas, on a snowboard, it makes your board edge into the turn.

Stopping on a skateboard is done through foot braking or bailing and outrunning. This cannot be done on a snowboard as your feet are strapped to the board. Stopping on a snowboard is very similar to power sliding on a skateboard which makes your board skid across the slope by shifting your weight off and pushing out.

Learning Curve

When it comes to the learning curve, most people agree that skateboarding is harder to learn than the snowboarding. Here are a few reasons.

If you fall on a skateboard you risk at hitting the concrete and hence you will get hurt very badly even at a very low speed. On a snowboard, you will fall in the snow and even if there is ice, it is not as bad as concrete.

Anybody can get on a skateboard and toll a bit, but getting the basics down like turning, stopping, pushing requires more effort and time than snowboarding. The learning snowboarders are typically able to ride down a mild slope within a day, whereas safely rolling down the slope on a skateboard will take a lot more practice.

Once you have got the basics down on a snowboard and you are able to link the turns and ride down the hills without falling, the learning curve gets steeper to ride bigger hills, by doing cliff jumps, riding pipe. Likewise, learning freestyle or dancing tricks on a longboard, sliding and bombing skills, transitions and riding ramps, are the hard skills to learn.

Accessibility & Cost

Skateboard does not cost much to get into, typically S100 to S260 for a board depending on the type. You may also want to fork out another S100 or so for safety gear.

A snowboard costs a lot more which includes binding and boots. You also need to factor in expensive snowboarding jacket and pants, gloves and goggles. In addition, the cost of traveling to the mountain and also the lift tickets, adds up to the hefty amount.

Skills Transfer

Do skateboarding skills transfer over to the snowboarding and vice versa? One thing is for sure. Your balancing skills from one sport will no doubt help to pick up the other sport much faster.

Skateboarders who start snowboarding will be able to link the turns and ride down the slope on the first day. Carving turn down the hill on a skateboard is very similar to doing the same on a snowboard. A skateboard mainly has to get used to riding the edge and pivoting on the front foot.

Difference between Snowboard and Skateboard

The difference between snowboarding and skateboarding


Snowboarding is executed on snow. Skateboarding is mostly performed on ground terrains.


Snowboarding is a winter sport. Skateboarding is a summer sport.


Movement is due to the snowboard that slopes down the snow. Movement is due to the wheels that roll at the base of the skateboard.


Bindings are requisite to snowboarding. Skateboarding is normally not practiced with bindings. Exceptions are however made duly in the case of beginners.


Snowboarding and skateboarding are the complimentary sports and most of the riders cross-train for one by practicing the other. Skateboarding or the longboarding can be easily and inexpensively be practiced outside of the snowboarding season.

Skateboarding lets you stay in shape and can also hone your balancing, downhill, carving, and freestyle skills from Spring to Fall. Conversely, snowboarding if you have the budget and time for it, can keep your riding when it is too cold and icy out there to skate.

Snowboarding is a great sport and there is no feeling like being on these slopes. It is very important to remember that skateboarding is also quite similar to the snowboarding and this can be the perfect solution for those who cannot snowboard throughout the whole year-round.

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