Make sure you get a board that fits you, based on height and weight. This depends on your tastes, but I am 5'7" and I ride a 154cm board. This will go up and down in height with park riding or if you are out west in Canada riding deep powder you want to have a longer board.
Pretty much you want a board that is right around your chin when you are standing straight.
Step 1: Getting a Board That Works for You , and Rules of the Slope
Get a board you feel comfertable with. I suggest you rent a board for first time. Take a lesson from a paid teacher on the hill for your first time to add to the experience.
Also, no matter what, you will fall ! Do not try to learn too fast, you do not want to hurt someone on accident. There are key things you have to know before the first trip down the slopes. They are :
1. Always stay in control, and be able to stop or avoid other people or objects.
2. People ahead of you have the right of way. It is your responsibility to avoid them.
3. You must not stop where you obstruct a trail, or are not visible from above.
4. Whenever starting downhill or merging into a trail, look uphill and yield to others.
5. Always use devices to help prevent runaway equipment.
6. Observe all posted signs and warnings. Keep off closed trails and out of closed areas.
7. Prior to using any lift, you must have the knowledge and ability to load, ride and unload safely.
Since this is HOW TO SNOWBOARD, each of the following things are explained in this instructable.
Step 2: Always Stay in Control
This will come over time with carving. Carving is when you turn, or shift your weight on your toes or heel so that the board will let you go right or left.
Sometimes you will "catch an edge" where you will fall quickly because the boards edge. This is hard to avoid and it is best to know it will probably happen your first few times. There are ways to avoid it though. Keep your weight on your forward foot (except in deep powder). Second, never ride the board flat. You will always ride on your uphill edge. If this is your front (toe side) edge, you will always feel as though you are on tip toe just a bit. If it is your back (heel side) edge, you will always feel as though you're curling your toes up. Third always keep your knees bent - even on the flats. Unlike with skiing where you can stand up straight, sit back and flatten out your skis when you get to the flat parts, this is bad news on a board. Keep your knees bent, your weight forward and keep riding on the uphill edge.
Step 3: The Dreadful Getting Off the Chair Lift !!
Step 4: Clothing and Safety
Wear a head band or a hat (baseball caps don't count). If you catch your rear edge you can fall backwards and will sometimes hit your head. The hat provides extra padding. Though the best thing to do is to wear a helmet. And certainly if you are going to continue in the sport after your first lesson, that should be one of your first purchases!
Some people have also suggested wearing wrist guards like you use when rollerblading and something extra to pad the tail bone. I've never tried it, though.
Step 5: My Favorite - TRICKS !!
A method of getting air without a jump. You just lift your front foot and spring off the tail of your board.
To slide the along almost any non-flat surface (e.g. trees, a picnic table, etc.) on edges of your snowboard.
A simple air with a 180 rotation. Off a straight jump this leads to a switch from regular to fakie or vice cersa. In the halfpipe, you continue the same way you were already riding.
Using one or both hands to grab either edge of your snowboard. Works better if you're in the air at the time.
A snow structure built for freestyle riding build like a pipe sliced longitudinally with flat areas along the sides.
An air with one full rotation. When done in the halfpipe and riding fakey, it is called a Caballerial. Best to do with a grab as well , and a flip, to a rail slide, and then get sponsored by a company.
Step 6: Extra Turning With Picture
This picture is of the heel edge, this is a harder turn then on toe edge. Make sure to be going at a comfertable speed, and the faster you go the better chances of not losing balance. Remember though , it will take time to get used to the speed.
Step 7: Go Out Snowboarding !
Also, if there is a need or want for a skateboarding instructable I am willing to do so , let me know !
I hope this helps, and as you already know, learning from life experiences is the best way to learn!! Go out there this weekend, buy a lift ticket, be a ski bum, get a goggle tan, taste mountain snow, shread the knar, jib the rainbow, and whatever else fancies your mind into stepping onto the board, I am happy you are !