THE INVENTION OF SNOWBOARDING
The first Snowboard like invention was made in 1929 by M.J. "Jack" Burchett. He cut out a plank of plywood and secured his feet with a length of clothesline and some horse reins. The first "Snowboard" was invented. Before the next step for the Snowboard was taken, it had to wait over 30 years until 1963. In this year Tom Sims, a Student in eighth grade,constructed what he called a "Ski Board", for a class project. Two years later Sherman Poppen invented "The Snurfer" as a toy for his kids . He made The Snurfer by bolting two skis together. Later on he organized competitions with the Snurfer.
The real change was made in 1970 when Dimitrije Milovich gets an idea after sliding on cafeteria trays. Milovich, who was a surfer on the east coast, started developing snowbaords based on surfboards and the way skis work. In 1975 Milovich and his "Snowboard", called winterstick, get an write up in the march edition of "Newsweek" and a two page article in "Newsweek". Inspired by Malcovich Jake Burton Carpenter moves to Londonderry, Vermont and starts making Snowboards with steam bend wood and another version with fiberglas. In 1977 Mike Olsen builds his first Snowboard in a Highschool Woodshop. He keeps experimenting with Snowboards until he quits college in 1984 to form his coorperation "Gnu".
Once an article about the new snowboards was published in the magazine Powder, the intention was moved to this new freestyle movement. The first real ski technology for Snowboards was introduced by Burton and the Winterstick in 1980. Their new prototype had a P-tex base and combined more of the ski technology into snowboards with that.
In 1982 the first International Snowboard race is held in Suicide Six, outside Woodstock, Vermont. The goal of the race apeared mostly to be "survival" because the race consists of a steep icy kamiaze downhill run, called "The Face". In 1985 still only 39, of the approximatly 600 snowboard areas allow snowboards. The same year the first Snowboarding magazin comes out. It's name is "Absolute Radical". Later on the name is changed into "International Snowboarding Magazine". In 1986 Regis Rolland, a French snowboarder, stars in "Apocalypse Snow". His staring launches a new European Snowboarding generation of fans who organize their own regional events, such as the Swiss championship in St. Moritz. Snowboarding is becoming a more and more popular sport.
In 1994 Snowboarding was declared as an Olympic Sport. Now it finally became accepted as a real competetive sport, not only a new trend which would disapear again. In the 1998 Olympics it was the first time ever that Snowboarding was in the Olympics. The new sport snowboarding was a huge success, but there still was something what made some people think they are right with the bad things they thought about snowboarders before: When the canadian boarder Ross Rebagliati ( second picture on the left) won the gold medal in the giant slalom he had to submit an urine sample. This sample showed that he was positive for marijuana with 17.8 nanograms per milliliter. Rebagliati said he did not smoke marijuana since April 1997. He said, he probably ihaled smoke on one of his friends parties in Canada. His gold medal got taken away on the first day, but he got it back afterwards. The International Olympic Committee, lacking an agreement with the International Ski Federation on marijuana use, could not strip Rebagliati of his medal. This event was bad for all snowboarders, because it showed them in a very bad light. Many people now think that Snowboarders smoke Marijuana and that they were right with the things they thought about them.
Two years before, in 1996, Mike Hatchett released a new video, called TB5, featuring riders like Noak Salasneck and Johan Olofson. The riders did incredible stunts and tricks. Filmed in Alaska with its awesome footage the film is state of the art. Now, in 1998, snowboarding is almost 50% of all winter activity. Most of the ski resorts now accept skiers and snowboarders. Snowboarding is finally accepted by everyone !