• Welcome to AlpineZone, the largest online community of skiers and snowboarders in the Northeast!

    You may have to REGISTER before you can post. Registering is FREE, gets rid of the majority of advertisements, and lets you participate in giveaways and other AlpineZone events!

Snowboarding in serious decline?

Boston Bulldog

New member
Joined
Sep 15, 2012
Messages
779
Points
0
Location
Boston
Saw this in the Globe a few days ago and I was intrigued.

http://www.bostonglobe.com/sports/2...-popularity/FAkg6xIGM0PitZem5TT2uL/story.html

One interesting quote: “Our ski sales have just hammered our snowboards,” said Mike Murphy, Sanchez’s boss at Sportworks in Duxbury, which he manages. “For every 25 pair of skis we sell, there’s maybe one snowboard. It used to be 50-50.”

I really don't know what to think of this because from what I see on the slopes leads me to think that Snowboarding is still on the rise.
 

Bene288

New member
Joined
Nov 25, 2011
Messages
1,026
Points
0
Location
Albany, NY
I don't know much about the technology in snowboards. But all my friends that ride with me have had their boards for 7 or more years it seems. Meanwhile my skiing buddies and I are getting new skis every 2-4 years. I've been told that snowboards don't change as much as skis do, so maybe that has to do with the sales.

I still see plenty of people riding. I'd say its almost 50/50 depending on where you go.
 

billski

Active member
Joined
Feb 22, 2005
Messages
16,203
Points
38
Location
Lexington, Mass.
Website
ski.iabsi.com
I saw some onslope rental shop stats for one area. This year they stock 33% boards, 66% skis.

It's not fair to judge the ski population on how much they purchase. Perhaps boarders, as a group are more frugal, or maybe they don't trash their boards like skiers do, lessening the need for new purchases.

Regarding the overall participation, the other industry wide stat is that the number of boarders have stagnated, while skier numbers are up.
 

thetrailboss

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Jun 4, 2004
Messages
28,610
Points
63
Location
NEK by Birth; Alta/Snowbird by Choice
Though I agree with the suggestion that snowboarding is on a decline (at the moment), I think the methodology here is a bit skewed because their data (sales of boards) has more to do with the demographics of the buyers than the amount of participants. Sure, lower snowboard sales might be indicative of a decrease, but snowboarders tend to be younger folks with less disposable income to buy new gear every year.

A fairer assessment might be to ask areas the breakdown of skiers vs. boarders.

And, FWIW, I did post an article a while back that did suggest that the number of snowboarders was declining with twin tips and rockers being a possible reason why.
 

billski

Active member
Joined
Feb 22, 2005
Messages
16,203
Points
38
Location
Lexington, Mass.
Website
ski.iabsi.com
Here are the numbers for 2012/13

Snowboarding. Snowboarding trended down for the third consecutive season, declining to under 30 percent of total visits. This figure is down gradually from 32.0 percent four seasons ago (2009/10). ...snowboarding appears to be leveling off, if not declining slightly, as it matures as a sport. Snowboarding is not the growth engine it once was, which has implications related to business volumes and spending for the industry.

Snowboarding has declined the most in the Pacific South region, though it remains the region with the highest share of visits attributable to snowboarders (42 percent). The mix of people on the hill who are on a snowboard is lowest in the Rocky Mountain and Northeast regions (24 and 26 percent, respectively). You just don’t see as many snowboarders in Vermont or Colorado as you do in California or Michigan.

Source:
Kottke End of Season Study
National Ski Areas Association (NSAA)

reportage:
http://www.liftopia.com/blog/201213-ski-season-wrapup/


http://www.liftopia.com/blog/snowboarding-stall/

 

thetrailboss

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Jun 4, 2004
Messages
28,610
Points
63
Location
NEK by Birth; Alta/Snowbird by Choice
Bingo:

“I snowboarded for four seasons,” said Sanchez. “The skis then were pretty traditional, and the technology was not advancing. But the past couple of years, the new designs have made skiing much easier, especially in powder and the woods. So I went back into skiing.”

The new technology?
It’s called rocker, or reverse camber (tech details later), and it allows skiers to take advantage of another of the sport’s trends: skiers and boarders skiing the groomed trails in sometimes densely wooded glades where making quick turns in loose snow is the required art form du jour.

To Sanchez and other young skiers, the new rocker generation of skis simply work better.

“It’s not only the turning,” he said, “but that’s important. The other thing is that a snowboard on New England’s icy conditions can be dangerous. With skis, it’s easier to grab the snow with your edges.”


I didn't think about the ice issue.

The Globe article cites the earlier one that we were all discussing.

And I'm not quite sure WTH this means:

“Parents in this town see that the twin tips still have the graphics and the baggy clothes, but they figure that at least their kids are not going over to boarding,” said Murphy.
 

Boston Bulldog

New member
Joined
Sep 15, 2012
Messages
779
Points
0
Location
Boston
Here are the numbers for 2012/13

Snowboarding. Snowboarding trended down for the third consecutive season, declining to under 30 percent of total visits. This figure is down gradually from 32.0 percent four seasons ago (2009/10). ...snowboarding appears to be leveling off, if not declining slightly, as it matures as a sport. Snowboarding is not the growth engine it once was, which has implications related to business volumes and spending for the industry.

Snowboarding has declined the most in the Pacific South region, though it remains the region with the highest share of visits attributable to snowboarders (42 percent). The mix of people on the hill who are on a snowboard is lowest in the Rocky Mountain and Northeast regions (24 and 26 percent, respectively). You just don’t see as many snowboarders in Vermont or Colorado as you do in California or Michigan.

Source:
Kottke End of Season Study
National Ski Areas Association (NSAA)

reportage:
http://www.liftopia.com/blog/201213-ski-season-wrapup/


http://www.liftopia.com/blog/snowboarding-stall/


This really hit the nail on the head Bill.


Sent from my iPhone using AlpineZone mobile app
 

octopus

New member
Joined
May 4, 2008
Messages
397
Points
0
Location
mass
yeah, we're all quitting and taking up super awesome skiing! seems like at least one of these type of articles comes out every year, snowboardings not going away anytime soon. sorry guys.
 

dmc

New member
Joined
Oct 28, 2004
Messages
14,275
Points
0
I'm not sure how I can face my day now...

I guess the skiers won... woah is me... haha...
 

C-Rex

New member
Joined
Mar 4, 2010
Messages
1,350
Points
0
Location
Enfield, CT
I would say it's more because people new to winter sports are now more likely to start off skiing since it's 1) Easier to learn from the beginning and kids are pansies these days, and 2) Now more fashionable than in the past, mainly because the ski industry followed the snowboard industry in terms of clothing. Skiing doesn't have the negative stigma with younger people that it used to. Also, skiers often have a different pair of skis for any given set of conditions, i.e. rock skis, pow skis, race skis, all-mountain skis, etc. Whereas, boarders usually have one, maybe two boards. All-mountain and park. Skiers, from my experience, also tend to buy new gear more often. It seems they're always looking for that ski that will do X a little better. Reminds me of mountain bikers. They seem to look to their equipment to make them better instead of working on themselves. Not to mention that a lot of people are still changing over to shaped skis, and the rocker movement has caught on along with "magne-traction" style edges. You all can thank snowboarders for that too. :wink:

Disclaimer: The above statements are generalizations for the sake of arguement. I'm not trying to offend anyone, and I don't need to read 50 posts about how you don't fit into what I just said.
 

billski

Active member
Joined
Feb 22, 2005
Messages
16,203
Points
38
Location
Lexington, Mass.
Website
ski.iabsi.com
yeah, we're all quitting and taking up super awesome skiing! seems like at least one of these type of articles comes out every year, snowboardings not going away anytime soon. sorry guys.

I know you are being slightly facetious, but a ~7% drop in a single year does not belie doom and gloom. Skier visits fluctuate from year to year even more so than that, due to many external forces such as the economy, shortage of Red Bull ;) , etc. The message I hear in the Kottke report is that boarder visits are flat. Remember, these reports are written for the ski industry. It is telling the resorts to not bank on growth in this sector.

Another piece of data missing from the equation is the demographics by age. There is this "limbo" period where a large chunk of participants disappear significantly due to the child raising years, roughly ages 30 to 50.

Finally, the overall attendance at resorts has generally been flat over the past decade. In and of itself, that portrays that the 1/3 - 2/3 split may be here to day. Nobody is going away!
 

Domeskier

Active member
Joined
Oct 15, 2012
Messages
2,058
Points
36
Location
New York
Also, skiers often have a different pair of skis for any given set of conditions, i.e. rock skis, pow skis, race skis, all-mountain skis, etc. Whereas, boarders usually have one, maybe two boards. All-mountain and park. Skiers, from my experience, also tend to buy new gear more often.

Not really sure how this supports your argument. Skiing sounds pretty costly compared to snowboarding, if this is correct. I guess the prospect of spending more money could cause more people to become skiers, but that sounds counterintuitive.

Edit: I see. You were explaining why there might be more ski sales. Should have read the first page first....
 

billski

Active member
Joined
Feb 22, 2005
Messages
16,203
Points
38
Location
Lexington, Mass.
Website
ski.iabsi.com
Also, skiers often have a different pair of skis for any given set of conditions, i.e. rock skis, pow skis, race skis, all-mountain skis, etc. Whereas, boarders usually have one, maybe two boards. :wink:

Excellent point. Since this thread was started in regard to equipment sales, I say "whoop-dee-doo!" Big deal; sales are down. Go sell something else like GoPro cameras!
 

dmc

New member
Joined
Oct 28, 2004
Messages
14,275
Points
0
I actually own 5 snowboards...
2 are splitboards..
1 is a powder board which I never use..

Only 2 do I use day2day... And both of those are trashed... I have a new one on order...
I've had both day2day decks for 4 years now...
 
Top