Over the weekend I went to The Snow Centre in Hemel Hempstead to try snowboarding for the first time. As someone who is addicted to the Winter Olympics I have used many a daydream on winning gold at the Halfpipe and breaking the world record to boot. It didn’t matter that I hadn’t even touched a snowboard in my life, of course I would win gold. So I was pretty excited to give it a go and also pretty terrified because daydreams aside, I had absolutely no idea what I was doing.
A group of us went and we had all booked ourselves into a beginner’s class. Our teacher Jamie introduced himself to us once we were in the waterproof clothes and had our boards. He seemed like a lovely man and as we trooped to the ‘slope’ I wondered if he would hate me very much once I fell on him (because of course I was going to fall.)
Jamie explained that there are levels in snowboarding and his goal was to get us to complete as much of level 2 as possible. Which sounded really exciting and really fun but I had serious doubts about my own ability to get there. Enthusiasm is one thing but being blessed with no balancing skills at all is another. Nevertheless I threw myself into it and pretty soon I found myself moving from a very small slope to a much bigger one and to level 2.
I think I fell about 4894579457 times (but thankfully never on Jamie). I fell on my bottom and on my front and every single time picked myself up and threw myself into whatever we were doing with the biggest grin on my face. I have never done any winter sports before besides ice skating and this was so much fun. Even clinging onto Jamie’s hands for dear life was entertaining and to his credit his didn’t grimace at my grip once (surely I can’t be the only person to have tried to stop circulation to his fingers?)
The last thing we did was snowboard from the top to the bottom. I wasn’t able to do the whole run without falling over (there was one run which was going ridiculously well and because it was going so well I chose to fall over – I am a tit who couldn’t quite believe I could do it so I didn’t) but as I have said before I genuinely had the best time. We all did and when our session finished we were all raving about it.
Note: Apart from paying for the session you also need to pay to hire the clothes and to buy the gloves. So if you want to give this a go and have suitable clothes and / or gloves, remember to take them with you.