Snowboard is a sport that uses a board attached to rider’s feet to speed down a slope. Snowboard was first developed as a sport in the United States in the 1960s. It was officially adopted as a formal discipline at the Nagano 1998 Olympic Winter Games. Snowboard at the Olympic Games presents a total of 10 individual events:
Parallel Giant Slalom(men and women), Halfpipe(men and women), Snowboard Cross(men and women), Big Air(men and women; newly added for PyeongChang2018) and Slopestyle(men and women)
Type of competition
Parallel Giant Slalom (PGS)
In this event, two athletes depart simultaneously the two gates courses (blue and red) which are installed in parallel. The athlete who comes down faster wins.
The dimensions of the course is as following: Elevation difference 120-200m, length 400-700m (550m recommended), and a minimum of 18 gates (25 recommended). The distance between the blue course and the red course must be between 20 and 27m. The average slope inclination must be 16 degrees (±2 degrees). And the width of the slope must be at least 40m.
The ranking of the qualifying round is decided by adding the two records after one athlete travels the blue and the red courses once a time. From the round of 16, as the departures (a maximum of 1.5 seconds) are made late in the 2nd contest to the extent of the time of coming in late in the 1st contest, the athlete who finally comes in first in the 2nd contest wins.
The Snowboard Halfpipe is an event where athletes perform jumps, rotations, and twists in the air as they glide criss-crossing a semi-circular ramp (shaped like a pipe cut in half lengthwise).
The 6 judges mark the overall performance score according to the height, the rotations, the techniques, the degree of difficulty, with the full score being 100 points. It is an event in which the ranking is decided with the average of the scores of 4 judges after excluding the highest score and the lowest score. The ranking is decided with the higher score after the athletes perform twice.
The course standard of the Olympic Games is as following: The slope is between 17 degrees and 18 degrees, a minimum of 150m, the recommended length of 170m, the width of the semi-circle is between 19m and 22m, and the height is 6.7m.
Snowboard Cross (SBX)
In the SBX, teams of 4 to 6 athletes race down a course organized with various terrain structures such as banks, rollers, spines, and jumps. The ranking is decided by the order of passing the finishing line.
The Olympic standard course for the SBX is as the following: Elevation difference 130-250m, length 1050m (±150m), average slope 12 degrees (±2 degrees), slope width 40m, and track width 6 to 16m.
A total of 32 to 36 athletes qualify for the finals by adding up the time records of the two races in the preliminaries. Then the top 2 to 3 athletes from one team enter the next round.
Big Air (BA)
The BA is an event where the competitor rides a snowboard down a hill and performs tricks after launching off very large jumps.
Competitors perform complex tricks such as frontside 1080, backside 1440 and double corks in the air, aiming to attain sizable height and distance as well, all the while looking to secure a clean landing. Many competitions including the Olympic Games also require a rider to do a specific and special trick to win.
The SBS is held on a course organized with the various objects such as rails, tables, boxes, walls, and jump pads. The athletes can select the objects they want to perform with.
The 6 judges mark the overall performance score according to the height, rotations, techniques, and the degree of difficulty with the perfect score being 100 points. It is an event in which the ranking is decided with the average of the scores of 4 judges after disregarding the highest and the lowest scores. The athletes perform twice and the ranking is decided with the higher score.
The Olympics standard course is as the following: Minimum elevation difference 150m, the slope of the slant is 12 degrees or higher on average, minimum width 30m, with a minimum of 6 or more sections (the objects + the jump), and 3 or more jumping pads.