Olympic snowboard gear: What the best of the best ride

If you think strapping into the same board as Shaun White or Kelly Clark will get you to their level, think again. Unless you put in the years of hard work and dedication that they have, you probably won’t be taking home a gold medal from the Sochi Winter Games. But just because you won’t become an Olympic rider overnight doesn’t mean you can’t try to get their look and use their riding tips.

Shaun white has his own Burton line, The White Collection. Complete with boards and outerwear, The White Collection outfits men and women. Olympians boarder Torah Bright and Gretchen Bleiler teamed up respectively with Roxy and Oakley to create their own lines of functional outerwear. But not all Olympians have their own line.

Many boarders, like Louie Vito, prefer custom boards. Vito tops his custom made board with his “LV” logo and Burton’s Malavita bindings. Chas Guldemond rides a Sentury made custom Rockstar board with a light South African wood core for better responsiveness. Although the Olympians need to know their board like it is an extension of their bodies, some don’t mind buying the many quality boards on the market. Scotty Lago rides a Flow Maverick with NXT-AT bindings.

Burton outfitted the snowboarding team in the 2006 Turin and 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games. Will Burton, one of America’s most well known snowboarding brands, rise to the opportunity again in 2014 for the Sochi Olympic Games?

Don’t grab a board just because the pros ride it so well. Each board has its individual pros and cons and can change with each rider’s abilities. Invest in a board based on your riding style, experience and personal feel for the board. Everybody is different, and your board should respond to yours.