How Do I Not Look Like A Jerry? | Mistakes And Pro Tips

A Jerry, or a gaper, is a new snowboarder who makes it obvious they don’t know what they’re doing. Everyone starting wants to avoid looking like one, as Jerry’s are often ridiculed by more experienced snowboarders.

You can avoid looking like a Jerry by keeping a good attitude, knowing that it’s okay to fail and that there’s plenty you have to learn. Maintaining good etiquette, wearing safety gear properly, avoiding common pitfalls, and having a proper stance are key elements to looking like a pro.

It’s easy for new snowboarders to look like gapers and get laughed at as a result. There’s a lot to bear in mind if you want to look like you know what you’re doing when you’re shredding for the first time.

How To Avoid Looking Like a Jerry?

When you’re new to snowboarding, the fear of looking like a complete gaper can feel overwhelming.

You’re surrounded by much more experienced people making it easy to feel like an outcast.

One of the most important things to remember about beginning to shred is that you’re going to fail.

Everyone falls, tumbles, and makes mistakes during their first few times snowboarding, and it’s important to remember that it’s okay to make these mistakes.

It’s also important to remember that you shouldn’t care too much about what other people on the mountain think of you.

Everyone has to start somewhere, and the best way to learn is to make mistakes in order to grow and become the best snowboarder you can be.

You’ll often find other people on the mountain very encouraging in helping you learn, so try to reach out for support wherever you can.

How To Avoid Looking Like a Jerry

Common Snowboarding Mistakes

The best way to prevent looking like a Jerry is to avoid a few common mistakes new snowboarders make on the mountain.

It might seem intimidating, but know that part of getting better is failing, and each time you make a mistake, it’s an opportunity for you to learn and grow.

1. Wearing your Helmet Incorrectly

A common way to identify a gaper is what’s known as a “gaper gap.” This is a large gap in between your goggles and your helmet.

Many Jerrys will incorrectly wear their gear like this, making themselves look silly and making it a potential risk going down the mountain.

Only a gaper will try to appear cool by incorrectly wearing their safety gear.

If you want to wear your headgear correctly, place your goggles underneath your helmet, ensuring that the rounded part of the goggle is sitting on your nose.

Make sure your helmet’s on securely and tight – otherwise, you’ll be at risk of injury if you fall.

Know it’s also possible to have a gaper gap if you’re wearing a beanie with your goggles, so make sure that you tuck your beanie underneath your goggles.

2. Don’t Pause in a Blind Spot

Being considerate of other snowboarders is extremely important.

You’re not alone on the mountain, and you can cause serious harm to others if you don’t pay attention to your surroundings.

If you go to stop somewhere on the mountain where others can’t see you, you are at serious risk of collision with other snowboarders, making the injury much more likely in the process.

3. Be Mindful of Proper Etiquette

When shredding, a specific code of conduct ought to be followed to maintain a safe and fair experience for all snowboarders on the mountain.

Beyond treating people with basic kindness and decency, there are quite a few things to consider when learning to snowboard.

Maintaining control of your board to watch for other riders is crucial, keeping in mind that those ahead of you have the right of way on the mountain.

You should never block the view of a trail and always need to yield to others when you’re merging onto a trail.

You should have a way to prevent your equipment from falling downhill and follow all warning signs. You should also know how to use chairlifts before using them.

4. Having Too Wide of a Stance

Your stance is everything when you’re shredding, and not being balanced properly on the board can make or break your time snowboarding.

You’ll also look silly to other snowboarders if you have too wide or too narrow of a stance, so make sure that you stand in the way that’s most comfortable for you.

Advice To Look More Like a Pro

If you want to look your best when snowboarding, then remember that there are specific tips and tricks you have to learn to be at your best.

1. Maintain Proper Posture

Your posture is crucial when snowboarding, as it’s an essential safeguard for maintaining a good balance on the board and keeping yourself from falling over.

Make sure you keep your feet on your bindings, the same distance apart as your shoulders are. Keep your head focused on the direction you’re going in at all times.

Be sure to bend your knees, keep your back straight, and relax your body – if you’re stiff, you’re likely to lose balance and topple over.

2. Don’t Turn Too Quickly

A common issue for new snowboarders is turning too quickly, causing them to lose balance.

Don’t be afraid to take a longer time on turns – you have to find the precise turning position that works best for you, as it’s slightly different for everyone.

Keep your upper body moving slowly with your shoulders parallel to the board.

It’ll take time to gain control of your edges, and keeping your stance centered and balanced is a good chunk of the battle.

Don't Turn Too Quickly

3. Leaning Too Far On Your Back Foot

It’s essential to keep proper footing in mind when snowboarding.

If you lean too much onto your back foot, you’ll cause yourself to go too quickly and will likely fall over.

Equalize the weight on both feet, maintain proper posture, and reach your front hand over your board’s nose.

4. Keep Your Edge Balanced

Another common mistake is to be unbalanced on your edges.

If you aren’t careful, you could catch either your toeside or your heelside edge, leading you to fall over and injure yourself.

The best way to prevent this is to keep pressure spread across the board and keep the edge that’s not in use above the snow.

5. Don’t Fall Off The Chairlift

You’re going to be riding a lot of chairlifts when snowboarding, so you’ll want to make sure you don’t fall off them when getting off.

Keep your snowboard pointing forward, and get used to gliding with only one foot. Don’t be afraid to use a stomp pad if you find yourself needing them at all.

They’re there for a reason and are a good option if you need some extra help maintaining balance when getting off the chairlifts.

Final Thoughts

You don’t want to look like a Jerry when snowboarding, and there are a few things to bear in mind when snowboarding.

Ensure you’re wearing your safety gear correctly, and be considerate to other riders when shredding.

Don’t pause in any blind spots, and avoid widening your stance. Keep your posture correct, and don’t unbalance your edges.

Make sure you’re using the chairlifts correctly, and don’t turn too quickly or learn too far on your back foot.

Keeping all of this in mind will help you to look more professional.

Shailen Vandeyar

A proud Indian origin Kiwi who loves to plant trees and play with my pet bunny when not digging my head deep into the world of snowboarding, tricks, techniques, and related safety measures.

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